Gathering prep
You don't have to be great to start,
but you have to start to be great

Welcome to Gathering 5!
February 15-16 2020

This gathering, we shift our attention from Relations to Systems. Time to focus on the bigger picture, and our part in it!

On Saturday the focus is on better understanding the world around us: how does it work? what are the most important issues and changes today, and how are they related?
On Sunday, we focus on understanding our own role: How do I see the world? What is most important, and what do I actually care about? What direction do I want to take, and who do I want to go together with?

You are expected to prepare for this gathering - the quality of the gathering depends on all of our effort.

Below you will find the prep materials. There are two parts:
  1. Shared prep (1,5h)
  2. Your personal prep: (1,5h)

Shared prep materials
Here's a collection of videos and articles for us to have a shared foundation for the weekend's topics and discussions. Prioritize the ones with an asterisk *, the rest is extra. Some topics have a shorter and longer version to choose from.
In total this will take around 1,5h :)

Systems Thinking
How to make sense of today's complex world?
Systems Thinking is a framework for making sense and approaching our world in terms of systems. Systems Innovation channel on Youtube offers some great general intro courses! We recommend following a whole playlist - but start with these intro videos:
For a more graphical and fun explanation, Sarah Firth offers an intro to making sense of complex systems and problems in this comic: *

Prefer a cute video? Try this simple visual story that explains how systems work, with the example of personal relationships.

Meadows 12 leverage points to intervene in a system
Iceberg Model
What are the root causes of our issues, and where can we make most impact?
This model from Systems Thinking helps us understand and find ways to have more profound impact in the world around us, taking us from addressing individual events to also addressing the underlying structures and worldviews that cause them.

Short intro The Iceberg Model for Systems Thinkers (1min40) *
Longer explanation Iceberg model (7min)
World context
What is most important to know about world context, today?
Technology is impacting our lives like never before - this shift is called the 4th industrial revolution. Intro video by World Economic Forum (11min) *

Humans are now a fundamental force of change on the planet. Johan Rockström explains how this happened, what our exponential growth means, and what is required for resilience Beyond the Anthropocene | Johan Rockström (21min) *

Our biggest issues are connected in many ways. World Economic Forum has created this interactive database for exploring these connections and their impact.

Thomas Twaites explores our interconnected society in this Ted talk: How I built a Toaster - from scratch (11min)

Concepts for the 21st Century
What mental models can support efforts towards a thriving world?
Regeneration. This is researched and promoted by Daniel Christian Wahl, a designer working with how we as humans relate to our surroundings. He offers the principle of regeneration as a foundational mental model, for going beyond sustainability. We have talked about what gives energy and creates health for us as individuals, in relations and teams - Wahl takes a similar approach at a planetary level.
- Short intro (1,5min) - From Sustainable to Regenerative Design *
- For a longer explanation, see (27min) Human and Planetary Health

Planetary health. This concept helps to see and sense how health and wellbeing at individual, societal and planetary scale are connected - Howie Frumkin- What is Planetary Health?(3min) *
What can leadership be in the context of systems?
Daniela Papi-Thornton explains the approach of systems-led leadership - this is about starting with understanding the change we want to contribute to in the system around us, its context, and only then choosing appropriate action. Video (12min) *

Collection of articles by the World Economic Forum about Leadership in the 4th Industrial Revolution. Link
Personal prep
On Saturday we will have self-organized sessions around the most important issues around us. We ask everyone to prepare in advance to make the most out of our time together.
Expert knowledge
Who do you want to learn from?
On Saturday, we are holding a session called FISHBOWL, where we invite people to join us for an interactive discussion on:
What do we need to understand about the current state of the world, to work towards a better future?

To make this session as interesting as possible, we have shared responsibility to invite guests. Who would you like to be there? Anyone from your network? Among alumni? Someone in your city you've always wanted to talk to?

Reach out to your pioneer if you have anyone in mind!
(you can use this template for reaching out (you are welcome to change wording, we just want to make this easier for you :))
Your knowledge
What is some important knowledge that YOU want to share with others, to support all of us working towards a better future?
What you choose as important is up to you - this can be global, local, personal.

We expect you to prepare for hosting a session on a topic you find important.

On Saturday, we will have two sessions for knowledge sharing and discussion.
  • During FISHBOWL everyone has a chance to join in discussions
  • After that we are holding an OPEN SPACE where you can host sessions in your preferred format. Want to host a discussion? Teach a topic? Make a workshop? Prepare any materials for sharing you would like to bring along. (and if you have questions, reach out:))