Methods for Collaborative Regeneration, Transformation & Cocreation
This is a conversation I recorded on September 17th, 2019. Tony Hodgson has been a friends and a mentor for 12 years now. We first met through a UNITAR & CIFAL Scotland workshop I helped to organise in early 2007. Once we discovered many shared interests and friends — like Henri Bortoft and Brian Goodwin — we soon ended up collaborating on a variety of projects. Each a huge opportunity for me to learn from Tony’s decades of experience, research and practice.
We experimented with new ways to apply the World Systems Game developed by Tony at the Findhorn Foundation. Then offered a 3 part course in Applied Systems Thinking together through Findhorn College which I co-directed between 2007 and 2010.
Tony got me invited into the International Futures Forum and this lead to a number of different projects over the years ranging from a seminar on the difference between Adaptive and Transformative Resilience, consultancy for UK Foresight on Climate Change Impact mapping and systems mapping of environmentally induced migration, to work on second order science and policy, and some collaborations in the early days of H3Uni.
In the one hour video below Tony first presents how thinking about the connection between his work and regenerative practice — provoked by both my work and that of our IFF colleague Bill Sharpe — he discovered a new way of relating the significance and generative potential of the five core practices in the H3Uni repertoire of generative thinking methods.
Together they form one methodology (or set of methods) that can be used to stimulate collaborative regeneration and the co-creation of transformative solutions. There are many other useful frameworks and approaches to regenerative practice which I recently reviewed in a piece on ‘regenerative leadership’.
Tony relates the World Systems Model, Hexagon Mapping & Influence Diagramming, the 3 Horizons Pathways Practice, Dilemma Navigation and the (indigenous) Wisdom Council into a connected journey of exploration where one process builds on another and together allows people to generate a much deeper individual and shared understanding, transcontextual awareness, and future consciousness about ‘the system in question’.
More than that, if we really understand what Tony means with ‘the future potential of the present moment’ with its multidimensional qualities of “time” we can start to see that the very process itself is a repatterining of the future in the present through the transformation of self-world-collective caused by engaging in generative thinking as a lived practice together.
If this the above is a bit much to take in, well, buckle up for this conversation. It will require some focus and might need some exploration of the hyperlinks provided here to give you the necessary background to evaluate the potential held in working through these methods with a group committed to creating elegant solutions that are carefully adapted to the biocultural uniqueness of place.
For me personally Tony has been an important teacher. He is one of the few who has not only expanded what I think about and what ideas I draw from, but has actually expanded my mental repertoire of how I think and integrate and synthesise insights from different ways of knowing and different disciplines into new tapestries of meaning.
At the end Tony briefly introduces his forthcoming book ‘Systems Thinking for a Turbulent World’ that will be published by Routledge in early 2020. I wrote a review of an prefinal draft of the manuscript earlier this year (see below). The book explores the unity of systems practices and theory and how it can be practiced to inform wise action in the face of not knowing.
Qualitative systems thinking as a reflexive futures practice
Advanced praise for Anthony Hodgson’s forthcoming new book
Further links to Tony’s work:
Here we go:
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Daniel Christian Wahl — Catalyzing transformative innovation in the face of converging crises, advising on regenerative whole systems design, regenerative leadership, and education for regenerative development and bioregional regeneration.
Author of the internationally acclaimed book Designing Regenerative Cultures