Often, the strength of a web is not held by its center, but by the quality of connections around its edges. At Berkana, we’re noticing that when we weave a strong, coherent center, many meaningful connections are able to emerge in the margins.
These days, we are witnessing creative collaborations arising between different initiatives, communities and individuals throughout our web of relationships. When we choose to collaborate across our individual and cultural differences, work styles and locations, we acknowledge that we are wiser together than we are apart. We know that the solutions we need right now arise out of our collective intelligence and shared leadership. As our Hub colleagues Tatiana Glad and Alycia Lee suggest in their article below, collaboration becomes easier if we think of it as an “authentic promise to each other to together host the emerging future.” As co-creators of the future, it is in this spirit that we share the latest news, events and activities happening in the Berkana Web.
What’s Happening at Berkana
Berkana Re-Launches Learning Journeys
In synchronicity with the upcoming release of Walk Out Walk On: A Learning Journey into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now, a new book by Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze, The Berkana Institute is excited to announce two real-life learning journey opportunities this fall. Join some of the charismatic, pioneering leaders featured in the book. From September 18-25, Sergio Beltrán of Unitierra and upcycler Aerin Dunford will host a journey to Oaxaca and Chiapas, Mexico focused on the power of self-determination and the wisdom of local traditions. Meg Wheatley and Marianne Knuth of Kufunda Learning Village will host a journey to South Africa and Zimbabwe exploring the role of women in transforming community from November 1-12. Sign up for the Mexico Learning Journey or the Southern Africa Learning Journey. Contact Lauren Parks to learn more.
Collaboration: The Courage to Step Into a Meaningful Mess
The Hub Collaboracy is a pilot initiative of the Hub network in The Netherlands created to inspire and support social innovators to realize imaginative and enterprising initiatives for a radically better world. The vision is to create a “collaboration lab” to activate and incubate innovative and collaborative projects within The Netherlands (and eventually globally) through a talent pool of Hub members and social entrepreneurs from diverse sectors and mediums of work. Contributors gain a deeper understanding of collaboration processes rooted in the Art of Hosting as well as practices for hosting emergence by building capacity for life-affirming leaders at a local level. Berkana has been a thinking partner with the Hub Collaboracy, offering support and sharing experiences in this inquiry around how to encourage true collaboration. Tatiana Glad and Alycia Lee, with support from Bob Stilger, share some of their reflections in Collaboration: The Courage to Step into a Meaningful Mess. Download the PDF.
“Walk and there is no path. You make a path by walking it.” —Antonio Machado
The New Prosperity Initiative, the most recent learning partner to join the Berkana web, has developed a workshop aimed at rethinking career development during times of widespread systems change. In an economic recession, with most major institutions failing/transforming, and with technology changing the way people communicate and work, NPi asks, “How do we find or create jobs we love that also pay the bills?” Rooted in the belief that rewarding career opportunities come through relationships, not job boards, NPi provides a powerful new framework for taking ownership of one’s own unique and often winding career path. In a highly interactive session, participants explore how to identify and communicate their own unique offerings whatever their field may be as well as how to establish and cultivate meaningful work relationships both online and offline. This workshop is well-suited for students, recent graduates, social entrepreneurs and individuals looking to make a career change. It will next be offered to the public in June 2011 in the greater Boston area. Learn more. To bring this workshop to your community or organization, contact Jeanne Dasaro.
Calendar of Community Events
We find the following events of interest. We think you will, too. Some are hosted by us; others are hosted by our friends and partners around the world. Please spread the word!
World Café Teleconference: Community for the 21st Century, April 1
The World Café, in partnership with with Peter Block, Nancy White, Maria Scordialos and Sarah Whiteley, launches the first in a series of “Conversations for the 21st Century,” interactive, free public events designed to stimulate collective innovation and new patterns of thinking in response to key issues we face as global citizens today. This first session will be a teleconference focusing on the topic of community and featuring the voices of three “conversation starters” who together offer a rich diversity of perspectives on the subject, and will help seed the interactive World Café discussion that will follow. Learn more.
Art of Participatory Leadership: Harvesting for Sustainable Change, April 6-8, New York City, New York
Please join us for this opportunity to co-learn with Berkana board member Tuesday Ryan-Hart and with Toke Møller and Monica Nissén who have been developing powerful harvesting practices in their change work with the European Commission, the Danish and UK public sector, rural communities in Africa, Europe and the Middle East. Together we will study lessons and patterns from their deep practice of harvesting for sustainable change and offer stories and questions from our work and communities in this interactive learning. Register or learn more.
Axladitsa-Avatakia Spring 2011 Events in Pelion, Greece
“The Mystery, Mastery, and Artistry of Living Wholeness,” May 6-15. Vanessa Reid, Maria Scordialos, Sarah Whiteley and others invite you into a powerful learning container, a field of practice that combines the power of place, Axladitsa-Avatakia, and the body of work of Living Wholeness through intentional evolution and collective learning. Participants are invited to listen to and learn from the land, share their artistry and deepen their mastery in a unique area of learners, practitioners, hosts and masters. Register or learn more.
“Apprenticing to the Earth,” May 25-June 1. Join Janell Kapoor, Penny Livingston-Stark and Filiz Telek in Greece in their exploration of the question: “How can we open ourselves to re-membrance with the Earth, cultivating our capacity to source the wise actions needed at this time of transformation? “Permaculture and natural building will be the embodied practices in this gathering, along with contemplative practices of listening to land and connecting with both the visible and invisible aspects of nature. Participants will experiment further with the conscious kitchen and engage the modalities of conversation, silence, writing, artwork and other creative expression. Learn more.
Walk Out Walk On Book Events & “Deep Dives”
Meg Wheatley and Deborah Frieze’s new book, Walk Out Walk On: A Learning Journey into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now is coming out next month! Join the authors in the Bay Area on April 11, Chicago on April 22 and Toronto on May 9. Support the Walk Out Walk On bestseller campaign by purchasing the book and inviting others to do so through Amazon on April 13. Deborah Frieze, Tim Merry and Tuesday Ryan-Hart are hosting two-day “deep dives” into the ideas and challenges that confront us when we begin to walk out and walk on, the first of which will take place in Toronto, May 9-10.
As we prepare for the book’s release, we invite you to become a fan on and to follow The Berkana Institute and Deborah Frieze on Twitter at @berkanainst and @dfrieze. Join the Walk Out Walk On movement at walkoutwalkon.net.
The Berkana Institute works in partnership with a rich diversity of people around the world who strengthen their communities by working with the wisdom and wealth already present in their people, traditions and environment. As pioneers, we do not deny or flee from our global crisis. We respond by moving courageously into the future now, experimenting with many different solutions.
Whatever the problem, community is the answer.