Behind the Scenes: Storytelling and Group Process

One of the great ironies of designing highly participatory, emergent processes is that they require a lot of work. We walk through and¬†practice design scenarios. We scrutinize every last detail, from the wording of each question to the layout of the physical space. It’s exhausting, but it’s also incredibly fun and gratifying, and the results more than make it worth it. We’ve written a¬†rough description of our design process, but the best way to understand it is to experience it […]

The Skillful, Intentional Practitioner

Last week, our team was preparing for our September Delta Dialogues meeting. As part of our standard preparation, we went over the room layout and discussed how we wanted to configure it. We had arranged in advance for a room that was configurable (movable chairs and tables) and that had a projector and screen. The room was rectangular in nature, with the screen on the shorter wall of the room. The natural thing to do would have been to arrange […]

Our First Year

Tomorrow, on September 15, 2012, Groupaya celebrates its one year anniversary. It completely snuck up on all of us. We’ve had our noses to the grindstone this whole year, focusing on doing great, meaningful work, on learning as much as we can, on exploring innovative ways to make a greater impact on the world, and on living our values. It’s been incredibly intense and an absolute joy. We all feel very lucky to have had this experience together this first […]

Finding the Simplicity Embedded in Complexity

My friend, the amazing designer and facilitator, Gail Taylor, often exhorts people to find the simplicity embedded in complexity. I’ve been puzzling over this advice over the past few weeks, as I’ve been reflecting on our own practices for working with groups on complex problems. I recently came across two resources that I’d like to share. The first is from my friend, Jeff Conklin, who first introduced me to the notion of Wicked Problems a dozen years ago. This past […]