Saturday, November 22, 2008

Kicking Butt: The New To Get Things Going After Building Your Organization

As a result of seeking paradigm shifts, I am becoming more open to the idea of creating and enhancing change-agent organizations beyond those found in the public sector. There are a variety of challenges though. Jessica Andors, one of the authors o, was part of a MIT panel DUSP 75 years diversifying cities. The article focuses on community development in cities. Paraphrasing what they said, rather than making a product or providing a service it is creating an organization that will build indigenous power and encourage engagement to energize a barren public landscape in our communities.

  • diigo tags: community-planning, networking, activism

    • Our response to this situation is a “network organizing” strategy that connects people to each other and to opportunities for people to step into public life – from the neighborhood group to the City Council – in a way that feels safe, fun and productive. Our approach is a hybrid of many of the established practices of community organizing. The principal twist is the application of network theory, a set of ideas that come from the technology and economics fields but that are proving useful for understanding and shaping our community environments. Applying this thinking to our work has helped us to challenge some of the common obstacles to genuine engagement, and shape a strong demand environment for change.
Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

It is not enough though just to build the organization regardless of how engaged and empowered everyone feels, it must also have an impact on its environment, political, social and economic to cause change.

Kicking Butt: The New Organizational Model? an article by Kristin Clarke was featured back on 10/30/08 in Acronym. It discussed how social movements start, stall, or succeed and used the success of the September 5, Stand Up to Cancer (SU2C;) telethon as a successful template. Here are the lessons that I took away from her article, it is a re-blogged summary. Acronym is a publication of ASAE (American Society of Association Executives) and the Center for Association Leadership. I am still having trouble with getting my head around who they are, while they seem to be an association of change-agents their scope seems to defy concise definition, still they consistently come up with great ideas.
  • First, take radical steps to overcome barriers among the interrelated sectors to build an entirely new space in which leading professionals collaborate and take risks. Kristin termed this as, blow up the "let's all get along and just work better together" niceties in favor of "Dream Teams" rallied around a kick-butt attitude of "We're not leaving this war room until we solve this sucker!
  • Second, create a heavy-hitting leadership team. Heavy-hitting means not only well-known but those who have a long term stake. With the SU2C's leadership team, Kristin points out, "Cancer has touched each of them personally in some manner, making them incredibly determined, knowledgeable, and impatient for progress (hence, the sparks for innovation)."
  • Third, be smart enough to know that you are not smart enough to solve all of the problems. Partner with others who have been doing it longer and better. SU2C unsurprisingly chose the American Association for Cancer Research
  • Fourth, leverage social networks in a big way. Hopefully you have considerable social networks or can get them allowing one , bringing in Kristin says, "the kind of major donors that cause envy among us all--AARP, Bloomberg Philanthropies, Alliance for Global Good, and the Milken Family Foundation, for instance—and then convinced an unprecedented number of media partners—from online powerhouses like WebMD, Facebook, and AOL to ye ole traditional Hearst Corporation and The New York Times Company—to help jumpstart "a new movement." It didn't hurt that more than 100 celebrities also leapt on board."

I am getting to appreciate her conclusion more now that the Obama campaign has succeeded. Unlike some, I see this as time to realize opportunities.

Maybe a wildly new bring-it-on attitude and fearlessness truly are the secret ingredients.

Belief and Ritual Finding Common Ground Through Difference

My objective in creating this blog was as a learning tool for myself through finding websites of interest and organizing them for further study to create my own personal paradigm shifts. One of the main sources of interesting material continues to be TED. Recently, I have had a desire to go back to the original motivations for this blog and broaden my explorations again. This is done with the belief that it will help my gaining more understanding of the Millennium Development Goals dealt with in my other blog. Below are a collection of TED talks I found inspiring on a personal level.

Wade Davis: The worldwide web of belief and ritual
Anthropologist Wade Davis muses on the worldwide web of belief and ritual that makes us human. He shares breathtaking photos and stories of the Elder Brothers, a group of Sierra Nevada Indians whose spiritual practice holds the world in balance. Watch this talk >>

Stefan Sagmeister: Things I have learned in my life so far

Rockstar designer Stefan Sagmeister delivers a short, witty talk on life lessons, expressed through surprising modes of design (including ... giant inflatable monkeys?). Watch this talk >>

Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi: Creativity, fulfillment and flow Mihaly Czikszentmihalyi asks, "What makes a life worth living?" Money cannot make us happy, he says -- instead, he looks to people who find pleasure and lasting satisfaction in activities that bring about a state of "flow."

Watch this talk >>

Global Warming means bannas in Iceland is a good thing?

Achieving a sustainable environment is both a paradigm shift and a Millennium Development Goal. The issues raised here also involve economics and trade. This post deals with the broader basic research from sources complied through diigo.

  • MIT World » : Global and Regional Climate Change: Underlying Science and Emerging Riddles diigo tags: MIT, environment, greenhouse

    • The most recent UN report on climate change predicts that greenhouse gases already in circulation have committed the planet to a warming of 2.5 degrees. “No matter what we do today to reduce emissions, the planet will still heat up,” says Ramanathan. But, through a quirk that Ramanathan has spent 10 years uncovering, the planet actually manifests only ¼ of the warming it should based on these climate models. Air pollution, specifically brown clouds from burning biomass, Ramanathan has learned, act as a global warming mask, reducing sunlight on the ground. “On the one hand, it has protected us, but also prevented us from seeing the full blast of the greenhouse effect,” he says. “One of the dumbest things we can do is to reduce sunlight,” because it reduces ocean evaporation, which cuts down on rainfall, and shifts weather systems everywhere, shrinking harvests and glaciers.

    • We are left with “Faustian bargains,” says Ramanathan. If we cut airborne pollutants such as sulfur, the mask will drop, temperatures rise rapidly, and climate tipping elements come into play. Curing one ill causes another.
  • Energy Probe, raises questions regarding food miles. The issue is what is the net benefit of growing bananas in Iceland as opposed to growing them in Chile. Reason Magazine chooses Chile because its climate is naturally suited for doing so, the right choice in many instances but not sure it necessarily is here.

    diigo tags: environment, economics, sustainability, energy, green

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.