Issue:Participative Planning & Open space Convenor:Sheila T. Isakson

Participants:Gabriela Ender, Eva Broms, Michael Pannwitz Jr., Judi Richardson,Eva Schwarz, Jan Feil, Michelle Cooper, Ulrika Eklund, Alexander Kjerulf, & Agneta Setterwall

Summary of the meeting: 1. What does the topic mean to you? Participative planning can have several meanings: a) Using Open Space for Planning, b) Participative Planning for an Open Space Event and c) Convergence and planning the next steps. Obviously participation requires that people are engaged in making choices.

2. Participation in deciding on the theme for an Open Space Event could be similar to the transparency provided by the Institute of Cultural Affairs (ICA) Technology of Participation (ToP?) Methods, especially the Focused Conversation.

3. Planning an Open Space Event begins with participation in a pre-meeting (1/2 day process is recommended) with the sponsor. Michelle Cooper invites the planners to sit in a circle and engage in story telling. The key decision makers must participate along with persons who will represent various organizational parts.

                           Pre-Meeting  _________________ OPEN SPACE ________________ Post-Meeting
       Givens= What is the freedom of the                                            What is the story after the event?
               participants?  How big a 
               space can I open?

4. Ethics of Participation - Planning the event includes more viewpoints than just the Sr. Executives viewpoint.

5. Burning Questions: Where did the need originate? What is the purpose of the Open Space Event? Often it is difficult for people to talk about purpose. Purpose has three parts: Dreams, Challenges, and Consequences (What do we want to leave behind)? It is also important that planners have an opportunity to move around. Jens suggested putting a paper with a focus question on the floor and ask planners to identify the sub-questions. This is a meta-question process. (These are the questions that help to clarify the real purpose--the whys behind the focus question). Jens suggested that 'quiet time' be provided to reflect on the focus question and then walk around. Participative Planners are invited to organize the papers.

6. Participative Planning for the Pre-OS Meeting takes time, i.e., there are streams of conversation and then a consensus about the theme. Convergence can include participation by questions like who has the most experience? or help in counting votes from an invitation to identify priorities.

7. Participative Planning for Convergence: What should we be looking at to move forward? This process introduces other ways of working together. One possibility is to see the planning process in three parts: a) Divergent Conversations in Open Space and then Close this space, b)open a new space to post projects or ideas for action, and c) identify the resources and to make arrangements. Do convergence with a 'sustainablilty' context. The energy level of the group does wax and wane. Consider these to be transition points.

8. Ideas to support traditional convergence: sticky dots, computer, and simply standing under the topic paper. Jan suggested that it is important to think about the transition points of the process. Also, there are resources available in addition to the Users Guide, e.g., go to Convergence at <> to find some things that Michael Herman has written about convergence.

9. If a short open space, invite planners to identify topics/projects and do the actual planning at another time. Sheila shared that a planning time from October until May worked in one instance. The May meeting involved Open Space with a second convergence.

10. Another possible way to do convergence: face-to-face converstations in Open Space with convergence, which is followed by online Open Space for planning. This approach requires use of special software (Openspace-online) from Gabriela Ender's company.

11. Another participative planning approach was from Future Workshop: If something is going to happen...who (will accept responsibility)? what? when? where?

12. Participation requires that people are engaged and 'do something.' Sponsors must be informed that during an open space event things can come up that are suprises. We ended by noting that 2 % of the entire process is the pre-planning. In order to ensure that a whole process is involved, include this, along with follow-up. to an Open Space event.

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