Reflection piece #1 on this week’s BIG gig

Posted by  GeoffBrown —November 13, 2011
Filed in Facilitation, How Stuff Spreads & Changes

Last week I had the priveledge of working in Sydney with a very large room full of people who are passionate about their work. Mostly, they are change-agents in the environmental sustainability space. Some were from health and others from policy. They came from government, private industry and NGO’s. 150 people in all.

This gathering was called the ‘Behaviour Change for Sustainability – National Congress‘ and was hosted by the 3 Pillars Network. Next year it will be staged in Melbourne and my vote for the conference name would be something like … ‘Beyond Behaviour Change: Finding the new edges in our work’.

This week’s event was at the traditional-end of the conference spectrum. Speaking truthfully, I felt there was an overdose on presenters and opportunities for the group to go deep into questions were a bit limited. However, most of the presenters were really good and they kept to time. The facilitated activities were designed to nest between presenters and topics. Group processes like ‘150 Tweets’ and ‘Jumpstart Stories’ helped to build energy (when the group needed it) and they added another dimension to the learning experience.

This event marks the first time I have worked with a team of social media scribes. Their role was to tweet everything they saw/heard and have conversations with participants. Their presence and activities did not distract from the main focus. Mostly, they were invisible and I’ll writing a more detailed post on this aspect of the gathering very soon.

One of the most tweeted moments was this video on flocking Starlings called Murmuration. Matthew Parnell and I designed a quick presentation on Living Systems and Complexity and this video (after a game of Sun & Moon) kicked off our efforts … it’s like magic!

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