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UCD-STAFFORDBEER  March 2007

UCD-STAFFORDBEER March 2007

Subject:

Re: Reflections on participation

From:

"Wright, Steve" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford Beer <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 22 Mar 2007 19:39:36 -0000

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (112 lines)

Dear Luc,

I hesitate as many others may have done to enter into the ferment of
debate on participatory virtual networks, because I lack the level of
erudition to fully understand.....Yet I can see by the energy the alst
seminar has generated that the topic has generated much postive energy
and can take Metaphorum into new directions with potentially lots of
synergistic co-operation.

You mention tools and many people not connected with Metaphorum are
attempting to address the ethos of Stafford's work that we create more
effective platforms for change. But there is a real translation issue
here between those who know and are fluid with the relevant paradigms
and the newbies on the periphery. I have only one rather simple minded
plea, if this whole thing takes off......

Lets take one prototype project with a paid worker already exploring and
needing new "toolkits" for advancing social change and one who
preferably has no familiarity with VSM of Stafford's work. The challenge
is to translate our metaspeak into step by step advice on how such a
newbie could apply the models in a meaningful and educative way so that
she would perefer to use those models again rather than any other. In
other words if we can create exemplars of willing but ignorant future
players who can be shown to have adopted and adpated these models - we
have the beginnings of positive proliferation - and I have someone in
mind.....

I guess what I am struggling to say in a rather Cack handed fashion is
that to be successful to a wider audience of participants we have to be
able to show success stories of using these approaches from scratch to
completion. I know w ehave mmany erudite people in the group who have
applied the models with more or less degrees of success but the
challenge is can we succesfuly persuade others especially in the peace,
security  development and environmental fields that VSM makes sense and
can be applied - so a VSM guide for dummies convincing enough for people
to read and apply it.....? But maybe writing something that simple is
too difficult?


Steve

-----Original Message-----
From: Forum dedicated to the work of Stafford Beer
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Luc Hoebeke
Sent: 22 March 2007 17:20
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Reflections on participation


Dear all,

We already have some material to reflect on participatory virtual  
networks.

1. Naturally there is no obligation to participate. If there is no  
interest in the topic, the topic disappears.

2. Because participation requires an effort. Tools will never replace  
these efforts. But there is apparently a tendency to jump quickly on  
tools. Group studies have shown that participants start always with  
the discussion about means, before objectives can be defined. Virtual  
means is becoming a very important topic when looked at the number of  
reactions about them.

3. Participation in what? is clearly an issue to put effort in. I  
propose that the subject matter in the header of the LISTSERV mails  
clarify as much as possible the topic. This is the first filter on  
which I decide to contribute or no. I hope that you also use that  
filter.

4. LISTSERV in its totality only is useful to launch a topic. The  
discussions after this launch should only be done through sublists of  
interested people. Can LISTSERV work with sublists related to topics?  
If not, there is a need for a first tool, partial lists. The  
combination of names and topics seems to be a key feature.

5. Browsing randomly through all the material may be an entry for  
those who want to join or rejoin the discussions. Good idea of Vanilla.

6. Perhaps, as in the syntegration there is a need for some chaos  
before choosing the Statements of Interest. What could be a good form  
to have a virtual problem jostle? I downloaded FREEMIND and found  
that it may work as a visualization of a problem jostle: names and  
remarks are easily added to the central Statement of Interest. Good  
idea of Enrique.

7. The proposal of Susan is tempting, but I have my doubts about what  
students can achieve when trapped in a double logic: to work in time  
on their credits and to be customer oriented. My experience is not so  
good how that is mostly managed. And we introduce a third party,  
whose participation is not free any more. Those who participate must  
be able to develop their own tools in functions of what is needed.  
The mails show that there is plenty of feasible ideas. Thanks Susan  
for your effort.

I would like to continue what has already started and to use it again  
and again to learn more about the dynamics of participation in a  
virtual network.

All the best,

Luc

For more information go to: www.metaphorum.org
For the Metaphorum Collaborative Working Environment (MCWE) go to:
www.platformforchange.org


To view the terms under which this email is distributed, please go to http://disclaimer.leedsmet.ac.uk/email.htm

For more information go to: www.metaphorum.org
For the Metaphorum Collaborative Working Environment (MCWE) go to:  www.platformforchange.org

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