Tag Archive: Monitor Institute

September 26, 2013

Flipping Orthodoxy


|Photo by Denise Krebs|http://www.flickr.com/photos/56041749@N02/6505676869/in/photolist-aUTi5z-b8fQp6-8vP3az-8vS5Gw-8vP6yc-df3uDo-9ajyDy-9ajyGj-9uwZsS-8xEyPM-a9Sswa-838T1L-838T29-838T2o-7EEiRH-9K1FZL-dPJmcY-9z759H-9qnBXs-aoqz7f-aonL2P-aonJXi-aonNiT-aoqwaS-aonMhc-aonLrp-aonMWr-aonKPK-eRPkFi-7HdeeN-8LifKY-7SSJvk-8giPCy-7HzRRr-7HzRXp-7HDMMm-7HDMRs-7HzRZH-7HzRVB-8TVkao-8brUvi-7AvmtM-7Az7Xm-7AvmvZ-8SNtK4-aoqvKQ-aonMJz-aoqy3L-aonLRP-aoqxBW-aoqvXy|

During his presentation at this week’s Council of Foundations Conference for Community Foundations, the Monitor Institute’s Gabriel Kasper talked about the need for innovation in community philanthropy. This included a call to examine orthodoxy in our organizations and communities, that is, the behaviors and procedures that we often take for granted with respect to the way we go about our business.  This notion of orthodoxy was developed by the innovation firm Doblin and is further outlined in an article in Rotman Magazine.  Gabriel then encouraged attendees to, essentially, “steal like an artist.”  So in that spirit, I wanted to share the plenary exercise he had participants go through that I am particularly interested in bringing to some of the networks with which I work: Read More

March 13, 2013

A Plan is Not a Plan is Not a Plan


|Photo by Alper Cugun|http://www.flickr.com/photos/alper/5222966685|

Last week I posted an entry on this blog about the myriad ways that people and organizations are engaged in “net work” for social change, by profiling three different initiatives focused on strengthening local food systems and food security.  Not only is there a difference in the process, but there is also variation in terms of so-called ends or outcomes.  The topic of “planning” has come up quite a bit in these networks and many questions asked about what “a plan” looks like in the context of multi-stakeholder/organizational initiatives tackling complex issues.  Once again, the answer is that it depends.  In both direct experiences at IISC and in additional research about other initiatives, there is a wide variety around what constitutes a plan for social change. Read More

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December 28, 2011

A Year of Multitudes


|Photo by ad551|http://www.flickr.com/photos/aaddaamn/5196833268|

As 2011 comes to a close, we here at IISC can look back on a year full of multi-stakeholder change work. I think I can speak on behalf of the entire team when I say that it has been our pleasure to contribute our process design, facilitation, and collaborative capacity building skills to a range of differently scaled social change efforts, linking arms with convenors and catalysts in a variety of fields.  These have included (to name a few): Read More

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March 3, 2011

AMP-ing Up Our Work


Over a year ago, during a network building community of practice meeting, future IISC board member, Idelisse Malave, suggested that I take a look at the RE-AMP Energy Network as a successful example of a multi-organizational network.  I made some initial calls to their coordinator and ended up dropping the ball (oh look, a squirrel).  Then a few weeks ago I was alerted to a new case study from the Monitor Institute about that very network.  And so we have Transformer: How to build a network to change a system, a wonderful report about what has contributed to the successes of a regional network that has been making great headway in reducing greenhouse gas reductions in the Midwest over the past six years.  Lead author, Heather McLeod Grant, a past participant in our network building community of practice, renders a great service in elucidating six key and contributing principles to RE-AMP’s success, many of which have great resonance with our experiences at IISC around designing and facilitating complex and collaborative multi-stakeholder change efforts. Read More

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