Ecovillage Designer Education A Project of “Global Ecovillage Education for a Sustainable Earth” Training of the Trainers Meeting 12-22 June 2005 Galgafarm, Hungary
In Attendance: Geza Varga – Galgafarm, Hungary; Hildur Jackson – Gaia Trust, Denmark; Ross Jackson – Gaia Trust, Denmark; Massimo Candela – Torri Superiore, Italy; Ina Meyer-Stoll – ZEGG, Germany; Kosha Joubert – Sieben Linden, Germany; May East – Findhorn, Scotland; Jonathan Dawson – Findhorn, Scotland; Daniel Greenberg – Living Routes, USA; Will Keepin - Satyana Institute, USA; Liz Walker – Ecovillage at Ithaca, USA;; Max Lindegger – Crystal Waters, Australia; Giovanni Ciarlo – Huehuecoyotl, Mexico Christopher Mare – Village Design Institute, USA
12 June, Sunday, Day 1____________________________________________________________ • Will opens the ToT with a meditation involving listening, a simple introduction to meditation. • Max recalls Nightwalk at Crystal Waters, opening up all the senses – hearing, smelling, etc.; imagine a ball in front 12 inches from your eyes; walking with unfocused eyes you begin to sense things without relying on sight. • Design is all around observation, says May, so toning down the sight can enhance other senses. • Jonathan mentions including touch. • Listen to the rhythm of the river, pulsing. • Give students tools for observing in less common ways. • Will says that by focusing on listening, you have to be present in the moment – this induces an open meditative state, the moment to moment unfolding of existence…In some ways, listening is the fundamental practice of spiritual life. • Practice the receptivity – sit still and wait for the sounds to come, open and attentive. • Try silent hand meditation with a partner. • Christian mystics have written poems about meditation that can overcome aversion to it. • There is a challenge in the EDE curriculum overcoming resistance to spirituality – introducing practice without the (potentially objectionable) ‘s’ word. • Some people may choose to not have Spirituality modules, per se, but may choose instead to talk about new paradigm shift, etc., especially to ‘mainstream’ groups. • Always allow open time for reflection – silence is OK. After Break (There is a community of world changers here) • May offers exercise of chanting the vowels of one’s name, as a way of starting the day. • Hildur facilitating: offers modified Futures Workshop to clarify our time together. • Groups meet to clarify their presentations. • Content of Social modules, and their titles, need to be addressed and re-arranged. • Need for discussion about meta-questions. After Lunch • Process group has created agenda organizing our time, incorporating meta-questions into the content presentations, for the purpose of making efficient use of our time. • Social modules are primarily ‘the process.’ • Presentation: “Science and Spirituality” by Will and May: - Transition from Mechanistic to Holistic worldview - Ecovillage as embodiment of holistic paradigm, within context of settlements - New theme emerging in many disciplines of science: “something transpires behind that which appears” – opening itself up to spirituality - Add these references to curriculum: movies “What the Beep Do We Know?” and “Mindwalk; writings by David Suzuki and Richard Tarnas (new book about astrology) - Atman is Brahman - Cosmos is flowing whole - Implicate and explicate orders - A hidden order may be present in what appears to be random - In spiritual traditions, implicate order is the only reality - Three foundations of reality: Consciousness, Energy, Matter - Consciousness is fundamental – consciousness or meaning is an inherent part of reality and not just an abstract or ethereal quality in the mind - May: Ritual is the meaning that connects consciousness to the other two. Ecovillages, by drinking from the ancient well, are able to reweave the primordial connection. - Reality has a holographic structure - Who am I? We are merged with the essence of the entire Cosmos - Reference William Blake and Plotinus in curriculum After Dinner • Liz facilitates a dialogue about “How to be most effective in real change.” • One effective strategy is for the ecovillage and ecovillagers to think and work regionally – socially, economically, politically – to nurture strong regional networks.
13 June, Monday, Day 2___________________________________________________________ • Dream sharing (so warm the feeling here this morning). • Affirmation arose concerning inner change/transformation as key to controlling outside situation; also just be. • Meditation in the Now. • Bring Eckhart Tolle teaching into the curriculum; also Kahil Gibran “The Prophet” • Presentation: “14 Principles of Spiritual Activism” by Will Keepin • Martin Luther King’s “4 Stages of Social Change”: 1) Documentation of injustice 2) Take it to powers that be 3) Crucial step: Purification (come from foundation of Love and Compassion) 4) Action • Essence of spiritual life: from being a human agent to being an instrument for Divine purpose or will. • The victory is in the doing and not in the results. • Integrity is protection (psychic aikido). • Love your enemy. • Add Spiritual Activism or Engaged Buddhism to curriculum, as exemplified in the works of people or groups like Vandana Shiva, Sarvodaya, Sulag, or Daniel Coleridge. • Then we all went for a tour of the farm component of Galgafarm, and then to the site where the ecovillage is to be developed. • Presentation by Organizational group: different versions of the course: Format Audience________________________
3-week summer, semester, and multi-year college students 6-month internship professional ecovillage designer aspirant 4-weeks Ukraine/Hungarian rural youth
14 June, Tuesday, Day 3 – Social group_______________________________________________ • Dream sharing, by the Social group – Kosha, Ina, Giovanni, Massimo – offering a Dream Forum. • Sharing insight from meditations. • Touching in passing is a potent way to keep glue in community. • Ina and Kosha introduce “Dolphin Game”: Music played, people moved around touching, mostly with eyes closed, touching respectfully. • Then Gio led a song in Spanish about arriving • Then we played the “Buddha Game” of inner circle/outer circle, taking turns asking important questions of one another while sitting straight across. Inner or outer circle rotates after each question. • Giovanni: “Facilitation, Consensus, and Other Group Work Skills.” (Referencing Bea Briggs). • Facilitator – impartial guide to the process – thinks about the needs of the group as a whole. • Qualities of a good facilitator: - Ask questions - Balance participation - Maintain focus and flow of meeting - Select the appropriate dynamic - Pay attention to language – both physical and spoken - Create atmosphere of security and safety - Provide effective feedback • Consensus is a decision-making process which strives for non-violent resolution of conflicts and the cooperative development of decisions which everyone can support. • Essential elements: - Willingness to share power - Common purpose - Need to make a decision together - Trained participants - Strong agendas - Effective facilitation • Sarah West (Australia) has documented decision-making process from 8 different communities. • Consent vs. consensus decision-making. • Reference www.iifac.org. After Lunch • Song and “Goofy Game” out on the covered terrace. Hildur was the only one not saying goofy. • Massimo: “Larger Community” (Module 5) - Community includes ancestors - Sustainability includes strong relationships with neighbors - Ecovillages need to take root in greater eco-cultural context • Geza has great story concerning relationships with greater community. • Then Ina directed a genuine Forum (Chris, May, and Hildur went in there). • Overview: - Add games inventory (see www.newgames.org) - Satchy Satchy - Create Set of Principles for Ecovillage Design - Evaluation - Weave Social exercises through whole training
15 June, Wednesday, Day 4 – Economics group________________________________________ • Very powerful “death and dying” meditation, which evoked strong emotions. • Jonathan: Economics introduction - Ecological Economics is the mainstream - Neo-liberal economics is a small, temporary eddy - Challenges us to ‘think outside the box’ with the 4-line riddle • Ross: Globalisation - Part of a paradigm shift. This one began in 1920 with Heisenberg “Uncertainty Principle.” Last one was the Newtonian shift. - There are two faces of globalization: evolutionary and political • Neo-liberal economics (goes back to 1980s Reagan/Thatcher): - Monopolies - Unrestricted capital flow - No social/environmental costs in prices - High tariffs for developing countries - Large EU/USA subsidies • Free trade and democracy are not compatible. • Reference to “Confessions of an Economic Hitman.” • Neo-liberal results: - Greater inequalities - Slower growth - Increased poverty - Undemocratic global governance - Destruction of local communities worldwide - Terrorism/social apartheid - Booming stock market • 1950 ratio of CEO to average worker 12:1; 2004 ratio of CEO to average worker 350:1 • Battle for the Global Commons. Who controls our local resources? • Free trade (really forced trade) – strategy of strong country to exploit weaker; protectionism – strategy of weaker country to develop competitiveness. • Geza: Agricultural Aspects – approach of a farmer - Charging interest is when economy began moving in wrong direction; “renta” means interest - Food sovereignty very important • Reference to www.rewdefiningprogress.org • New Economic Order Principles: - Capital flow controls - “Internalisation” of social and environmental costs - No monopolies - No forced” trade (i.e. national sovereignty re-established) - Accept protectionism for developing countries - Government regulation of large corporations • Change begins when small number of countries act together and decide to do things differently; OR – change could occur with change of informed buying patterns by global consumer class • As for the EDE: after economic session, do recall exercises, like one-on-one discussion about what we learned • Kosha suggests mixing emotional/deep ecology components within Module 1 – Global Economics, because these issues affect people so deeply. • Reference: Global Commons Institute After Lunch • Who are we? EDE is a very complex, fractalized system. • A nautilus seashell spiral drawing was made that listed all the potential lengths of delivery of the EDE: 4-days, 1-week, 4-weeks, 6-month internship, 1-2 years mentorship, 4-year degree, and life-long learning. • Sub-committees were created to address specific audiences of the EDE, and the focalizer of each sub-committee was asked to write a report for the curriculum concerning how the EDE could be applied to these audiences: - North-South – Max - Urban-Rural – Chris - Academia – Daniel - Virtual – Ross - Specific needs – Liz • UNITAR has endorsed 4-week curriculum proposal • Biosphere Reserve = natural habitat (undisturbed) • Brainstorm: Accreditation/Certification. Proposal included the following entities: Academia, UNITAR, Ecovillages, Certification Board, EDE Curriculum, Instructors, GEN, Friends of EDE, EDE Team, Gaia University. • What followed was a big, big discussion concerning certification and the relationships amongst the various entities. The group process was strong. Expert facilitators managed the process very well…finally, at 4:55 pm local time, agreement was reached on the flowing: • “We agree to the principle of certification of courses based on the EDE curriculum. A small group appointed by the EDE team will further develop this process.” • During break, Jonathan clarifies the discussion that took place concerning organization and relationship with other bodies. • Ross outlines strategic initiative for organization and relationship within bodies, including steering committee and program director. • Lots of discussion working out details of organization. • Group leaning toward having GEN as oversight body. GEN board will meet as subcommittee. • Session closing with the need to reconvene to discuss specifics of EDE relationship with GEN. • Finally came the evaluation of “What went well?/What can be improved?”
16 June, Thursday, Day 5 – Economics (cont.)_________________________________________ • Global Economy Games (to relieve tension on this subject): - Fruit Salad - Product Biographies - Commodity Prices - Ecological Footprints - Indicators: versus traditional indicators, what indicators could we use to measure real well-being, e.g. – local food grown, local currency exchanged, number of hugs, amount access to clean water, number of giggles per gigabyte, soil fertility, time for leisure… • WIKI is interactive website. • Ecological Footprint Analysis by Living Routes (part of Module 1) - With 6 billion people, 1.6 Ha/person = our fair earth share - With 2 billion people, 5.2 Ha/person = our fair earth share - With 10.4 billion people, 1.0 Ha/person = our fair earth share • At Living Routes, students write a letter to themselves, what will they do to reduce footprint? Later, letter is mailed back to them so they can measure their progress. • GEN CSA – Community Sustainability Assessment • Reference: Frtijof Capra “The Hidden Connection” and E.F. Schumacher Society, Vermont After Break • Module 3: Nurturing Local Economies. • Leaky bucket tool and www.zeri.com • L.E.T.S. systems – not asking permission to give services • Local currencies at Damanhur and Findhorn: At Findhorn, issuing 20,000 pounds generated turnover of 150,000 pounds, over 8 spending cycles. • “The Gift Must Travel” – Permaculture principle • “The first step for any community aiming to become more self-reliant is therefore to establish its own currency system.” – Richard Douthwaite • Dance Game with May: Play music, everybody dances, stop music, ask question that can be completed, like “My favorite food is?” When music stops 3 or 4 people stop, hold hands and complete the question. • In village economy, there is a deep, rich interconnectedness of goods, services, economic functions. This all has been replaced with long lines of distribution. After Lunch • Modules: “Social Enterprise” and “Legal and Financial Issues.” • Social entrepreneurship is enterprise activity and structure that supports social well-being. • Social auditing: Triple bottom line = Profitability, Social Impact, Ecological Impact • Geza: “Social Enterprise in Practice” - Cooperative way of doing business - Gaia Foundation (Magyar) also runs some businesses, e.g construction - These contribute to local economy and use of local currency • Brainstorming criteria for Business Plan: To whom? Competition? Resources? Demand? Market? Product? Budget? Financing? Time line? Delivery? Customers? Human Resources? Training? Staffing? Uniqueness? Life cycle analysis? SWOT? Organization? Vision? Purpose? Mission? Feasibility? Enrichment? Environmental impact? Social impact? Meaning to people? Allies? Partnership? Technology? Sustainability over time? Local area effect? Life quality? • The came small group work drawing up hypothetical business plans. • Business plan = How can good ideas be turned into money? • Ross and company produce executive summary for launching of “Galgabier,” with the slogan “eco-friss” (eco-fresh). • Evaluation of Economics curriculum: - Non-profit and land trust – is this info included? - Fund raising needs to be added; also proposal writing - Suggestion adding Aurobindo perspective on money - How does localization influence globalization? - Economics is HOT topic in ecovillages – who gets a job, who has money - Can we include case studies? Yes, of economics working in ecovillages. - What was presented was “Ecovillage Experience” material. Curriculum may need to be modified for actual “Ecovillage Design: course - Exchange “neo-liberalism” for “globalization” for precision sake – so as not to confuse political globalization with evolutionary globalization - Add websites of hope - Have we created a ‘design’ curriculum? - Should EDE be called something else? - Should EDE be expanded with new modules? - Include equitable payment system in ecovillage - Jonathan should write a book
17 June, Friday, Day 6 – Ecological Dimension_________________________________________ • Max: Crystal Waters case study: “Sustainable Human Settlements: Concept to Realization” • Selecting land for communities. People expect Paradise from Ecovillage Design. • What are our basic needs? Consistent hierarchy across cultures and times: - Clean air, water, food (land) - Adequate shelter - Spiritual freedom - Social interaction - Meaningful activity - Safe play • Slide show of Crystal Waters: the world’s first permaculture village. • Max insists, “Crystal Waters is not yet an ecovillage but an emerging ecovillage.” • Suggestion to make case studies key to pedagogy. After Break • Liz: Presentation on Food/Diet, part of Module 3 of the ecological curriculum. • Liz opens with excerpts from a Barbara Kingsolver book, then follows with excerpts from her own just released book: “Ecovillage at Ithaca: Pioneering a Sustainable Culture.” • Exercise making two lists: one column for food we eat now and the second column for food we ate while growing up. Then we split into small groups to discuss how things may have changed. • Brainstorm: Eating locally in ecovillages: CSA, bulk purchase power, local farmer’s market, own vegetable garden, own animals, designated processing kitchen, informal food production, freezing/preserving, wildcrafting, regional friendships, edible landscaping. After Lunch • Accreditation and Certification discussion had unanimous interest. It will be moved from subgroup to major topic. • Hildur introduces 4 Keys: 4 Ecovillage Designer Education books/booklets. • Proposed Editors: - Spiritual: Maddy - Ecological: Max, Lloyd - Economic: Ross? Jonathan? Helena? - Social: Marti • How to publish? Resource on Internet. • Proposal to split into 4 groups to discuss the 4 Keys/4 Dimensions individually, including actual proposed articles, titles, etc. • Emerging questions: Market? (supply side or demand side), Format? Audience? Translations? Purpose? • Jonathan, Gio, Will, Kosha, Max to form subgroup to engage emerging questions – needs more organization and purpose to proceed further. • Chris: Curriculum: Draft 3 - Draft 3 for GEN+10 at Findhorn - Previous Curriculum Committee: Gio, Hildur, May, Maddy, Chris - Proposed timeline for Draft 3: July: Proposals sent out to writers; August: Dialogue, comments, initial editing; September: Final editing - Hildur: During Sept. it should be laid out and printed - Jonathan: Too little time to come up with a good product - May: We have to launch it now to be in flow with the DESD - Max: How is the 4 Keys different from the curriculum? - Answer: Short description vs. textbook • Agreement reached to have Draft 3 of the curriculum ready for the GEN+10 meeting at Findhorn. • Jonathan presents WIKI, a website that can be easily edited by users (www.wikicities.com). • Robert Gilman is using this format to engage participation in local government on Whidbey Island. • Daniel has agreed to set up WIKI page for EDE curriculum development, perhaps before we depart. • Next discussion is about brochure – Hildur sees brochure as printable curriculum. • Max says typical brochure is used by different learning centers to describe what Ecovillage Design curriculum is. • May affirms brochure is different from curriculum. • Daniel wants packet to offer educators. • Ross wants flyer; Max will be focal point, possibly printing at Sarvodaya. • Jonathan will write press release of this meeting; he will add deep quotes. After Break • Jonathan: GEN Board proposal • EDE will be GEN project • May will assume position of Program Director • Next came a big, long discussion about organization, including various relationships and roles. - Geza proposes to eliminate oversight Board as unnecessary - As Program Director, May would like to work closely with two associates - Will, with nonprofit experience, supports Board - Ross insists Board provides protection for Program Director - Gio reaffirms commitment to values, including respect for GEN; clear communication to GEN members absolutely vital - A continually recurring question is: “What is relationship with GEN?” - General Assembly is current EDE group. What will be criteria for others to join General Assembly? • Finally, at 6:20 on this evening, the following organizational structure of the EDE was approved by consensus: - General Assembly of current EDE elects Board Members - Board oversees activities of Program Director - Program Director coordinates and is supported by subcommittees and working groups
18 June, Saturday, Day 7___________________________________________________________ • Will leads awesome visualization meditation in which each of us met the Divine face to face; then we let the Divine come into us until we became the Divine – beaming and effusing love from our center. We then looked around the room at our “spiritual brothers and sisters,” and everyone’s eyes were bright indeed. • Liz: Ecovillage at Ithaca (EVI) Case Study - Liz emphasizes the regional influence of the ecovillage and encouraging this influence for regional sustainability - Ithaca College, influenced by EVI, is now striving to be one of the leading sustainability schools in the nation • Chris: Presentation of Evolutionary Biology in context of Honoring Nature module. This was presented outside in the park/cemetery across the street from Gaia Hotel - There is an evolutionary impulse to reach higher for greater complexity and diversity, as evidenced by the history of life on Earth - Echoing Aurobindo: There is also an impulse for Spirit to descend downward into Nature. Ecovillage can be considered as next stage of evolutionary development, as well as vessel for receiving descent of Spirit • Everyone self-organized into 4 groups creating small altars in honor of the 4 directions • Then we took off for the afternoon to go to Budapest for some sightseeing and a river boat ride, followed by a wonderful dinner. This was Will’s last day at the Galgafarm meeting.
19 June, Sunday, Day 8____________________________________________________________ • Hildur open with discussion about the Spiritual dimension, providing useful material that can be added to the modules. This material will eventually appear in book form. • Max: The Design Process - Emphasizing observation using observation slides - When setting up an ecovillage, first thing to do is set up a weather station – accommodate different micro-climates - Observe the Sun through all its cycles, the 4 seasons - Amount of data collection will help to make a better design - Out of observation comes sector analysis – energy flows through landscape - Method of exclusion (after Ian McHarg’s Design With Nature). After all exclusions have been made comes a “window.” This is the design area where the ecovillage can appear - Base map needs scale and north point, roads, infrastructure, plant communities, slope, etc. - Competition among design teams does not depend on outcome but rather on process - Auto-photo map has contours on top of aerial photo - 1 in 5 maximum slope for building - Generally speaking, we don’t spend enough time on design • Then we went up to the ecovillage site where Geza was surrounded by cameras and press, part of some kind of official opening that included representatives from government. • Chris facilitated a discussion on site about peak oil and the role of ecovillages – including ecovillage concepts and principles – in setting a standard for retrofit in a post-carbon scenario. It was agreed that peak oil phenomena should be addressed in the curriculum. • Max began the design process by demonstrating observation skills on a walk through the proposed ecovillage site.
20 June, Monday, Day 9___________________________________________________________ • Kosha began the day by facilitating a spiritual ceremony in the park for Giovanni’s birthday. We lifted Gio high into the air while chanting, as some of the townsfolk looked on in wonder (or was it disbelief?). • Subcommittee meeting: Feedback on short and long-term objectives: • 18-month pilot phase – grounding the curriculum. Ecovillages can apply, as many as possible. • Max emphasizes action – within 18 months we need to have implemented some (6?) EDE courses in the field, from now to Dec 2006, which will be midterm evaluation for 3-year project. • May wants series of launches of the curriculum synchronized with launches of the DESD, including official launch in Paris for UNESCO. • May thinks it important that EDE is seen as contributing to DESD, not only within GEN. • Achieving and strengthening endorsement from UNITAR/UNESCO includes and depends upon a clear procedure for working with these UN bodies. • May wants to go beyond the ecovillage level, reaching out to touch the world. • Ross: Very important, within budget, to carry out this program in a number of places. Budget for now is flexible, needs to be fine-tuned by Board, because current budget may not cover unseen expenses. • 4 Keys as supplementary publication. • Max: Regional offices of UNESCO have no money; nothing happening on the ground in Asia. Do not put all eggs in UNESCO basket. • May: By having UN endorsement, we can go to other funders having strong credibility. This will make it easier for individual fund-raising at the regional level. • Jonathan: What we need is strategic planning. • Liz: What are our goals? Mission statement? Liz wants test runs and high quality curriculum before “training trainers.” • Jonathan: Value-added presentations happen in between UN and ecovillages. • Liz: Make it applicable to professional in mainstream. • May: Framework of 18 months. Test curriculum on the ground in as many places as we can, in many contexts. At the end of 18-months, review meeting, come back and use feedback to develop clear vision. • Ross: We do no know the market, so we cannot create business plan, so we need to test in many variations to discover this. • Geza: Create demand by promotion. • Jonathan: We are entering an information gathering phase. Do not scatter resources. Better to concentrate and focus on what we can do best. • Synthesis: Test driving the curriculum and grounding it at different places around the world. • Job Description of Program Director, as articulated by May: To connect people with people; weaver of change, dancer; building our capacity for fund raising. Graphically portrayed as a triangle, responsibilities are three-fold: 1) Bring international opportunities, 2) Grounding applications, 3) Endorsement from UN system plus academy; also support regional funding. • Proposal for Strategies subgroup to also create job descriptions. • Next subgroup: Certification. • Recommendations: - Certify only courses, not instructors or ecovillages - Create “job” descriptions - Designate “ideal” ecovillages for international network - Research other certifications - Create pathways for training - Instructors bios - Ecovillages descriptions and information • Course outline: - Greater than or equal to 20 days; greater than or equal to 6 hours/day (format flexible) - Strong intention to hold all modules (rationale if otherwise; initial guideline 80%) - Strong intention to hold all dimensions equally (initial guideline greater than or equal to 3 days) - End of course instructor report and evaluations from participants • Jonathan: This is focusing on what we want to offer instead of focusing on the demand. How can ecovillage education attract more people? • Max: Suggests standard form for feedback from students. This should be confidential – form given out by committee and sent back to them. • Ross: In the first 18 months we need a lot more flexibility. Try out shorter courses. • Liz: I need flexibility on the time in order to reach out to professionals. • May: We have to be able to reach out to the world, so use 20 days as a template and adapt to needs. The word ‘instructor’ is old paradigm; how about ‘educator’? • Ina: Quality control: Shorter teachings should be encouraged but cannot be the ‘certification’ course. • May: UNITAR has given endorsement for 4-week course. Other formats can be outreach seminars that pull people into the 4-week course. • Hildur: 4-days Outreach, 1-week Experience, 4-week Designer Course • May: Smaller programs may still be endorsed by UNITAR. After lunch • Ross – Budget – 3-Year - Total Budget = 111,000 Euros - Program Director = 49,000 - Publication curriculum = 7,000 - Publication 4 Keys = 14,000 - 6 Pilot Studies, including brochure, expenses, product development, other = 40,000 - + 4000 for brochure left over from last year • Travel budget for Program Director needs to be added. • Liz: I would put more money into grounding the curriculum and less intro publications. • Daniel: Consider seed money and program development support. • Geza: How to attract money from outside to co-finance? For instance for translation. Give priority to those who can attract their own funding. • May: I can support you by getting out all the letters of endorsement. Emphasize regional co-financing. • Ross: Technically the money may flow through the account of GEN-Europe to support funding from the E.U. • Jonathan: I can’t think of E.U. funding that that might fit our education. • Ina: We might need a fundraiser. • May: I will be looking for fundraising possibilities, how to support you. • Hildur: Gaia Trust Board was very enthusiastic about the EDE initiative! • Discussion about Board: - Suggested limit 3 - Representative of regions, gender, GEN Board, audiences (North/South, academia) - Three main functions of Board: 1) Make decisions (buck stops here), 2) Mandate
( Board prescribes to Program Director), 3) Support, for Program Director on ongoing basis, including oversight
- Board delegates and maintains really important decisions - Board approves budget; Program Director decides how to operate within budget - Board sets priorities • May: I would like to check with the Board whenever I am in doubt. I do not want to run on mandate – middle ground. • Jonathan: There are similarities with GEN Europe set-up. • Max: Design Process II (an extremely abbreviated version, due to time) - Communication 80%, Actual Design 20% - Rough design: Thumbnail sketch; broad strokes; start with rough sketch – not finished product! - Needs of land plus needs of client - Designer may be only representative land will have - Client needs to make a profit (how about designer?) - Allow for copious revisions - See the elements working together, allow them to come together - Right time, right place – everything fits within these parameters
21 June, Tuesday, Day 10__________________________________________________________ • Choosing a name; going around discovering first choices. • Geza: Names can be cultural specific, so difficult to reach consensus on any one single name. • Wide ranging discussion on various strengths and weaknesses of different names and their connotations. • Going around for the vote: - Sustainable Village Design – numerology #9 – strength: simplicity – votes 2 - Sustainable Settlement Design – numerology 36 – strength: outreach – votes 4 - Ecovillage Design: Educating for Sustainability – numerology #9 – strength: integrity, alignment – votes 6 - Motion taken to let the decision rest until after lunch • Subcommittee Session: 5 Groups (first person in each group is focalizer): - Curriculum: Chris, Gio, Massimo, Maddy, Will, Hildur - Certification: Daniel, Ina, ask Marian - Strategy: Max, Jonathan, Geza - Communications: Kosha, Hildur, Maddy, Daniel, Duane Elgin? - Board: Ross, Liz, Marti - Funding: Jonathan, Marti? Marian? • Concerns over time restraints and commitments, ability to offer leadership. • Need to attract help from outside this circle (the General Assembly). • Board stayed empty till Ross moved in and volunteered himself. Group urged Liz to move to Board after she originally positioned herself on Strategy. (Marti was recruited later, at consent of General Assembly.) • After some discussion, May recognizes that the essence of the Board continues to shift over time, as does her relationship with it. May wishes to have active Board that she can work with, like her originally desired 2 associates. • At one point, when Board still remained empty, suggestion was made to ask Ted Trainer or Bill Metcalf to represent Asia/Oceania. • Committees were agreed upon at this hour, 11:20 am. • Redesign or revision of Modules and Dimensions: • Economic: - Module 1: Shifting the Global Economy to Sustainability - Module 2: Right Livelihood - Module 3: Nurturing Local Economies - Module 4: Complementary Currencies - Module 5: Legal and Financial Issues • Social: - Module 1: Building Community & Embracing Diversity - Module 2: Communication Skills: Conflict and Resolution - Module 3: Personal Empowerment and Leadership - Module 4: Health and Healing - Module 5: Bioregionalism • Worldview (changed from Spiritual): - Module 1: Holistic Worldview - Module 2: Listening to Nature - Module 3: Awakening and Transformation of Consciousness - Module 4: Celebrating Life: Creativity and Art - Module 5: Spiritual Activism • Ecological: - Module 1: Ecological and Social Aspects of Ecovillage Design - Module 2: Green Building and Retrofitting - Module 3: Local Food - Module 4: Appropriate Technology - Module 5: Restoring Nature • Add “Designing for Social Ecology” to Ecological dimension. After Lunch • The Name: New Vote • Contenders: - Sustainable Village Design – 0 votes - Sustainable Settlement Design – 2 votes - Ecovillage Design – 5 votes - Ecovillage Design: Educating for Sustainability – 2 votes - Ecovillage Design Certificate - 1 vote - Sustainable Design: Learning from Ecovillages – 2 votes • The followed another long and animated discussion about the strengths and weaknesses of various names. • Daniel: What are we naming? Are we naming the program? • Geza asserts that in his cultural context, in order to be successful, he must use the phrase “Sustainable Settlements” – Ecovillage will not work for him here. • Another round of name-storming: - Sustainable Human Habitat: Designing Villages and Ecovillages - Sustainable Human Settlements: Designing Ecological Villages - Ecovillage Design: For Urban and Rural Settlements - Chrysalis • This name was chosen as the current champion: Ecovillage Design: For Urban and Rural Settlements. • Max: Design Process 3: - Introducing a wild idea can break a gridlock in design process - Example portfolio from China Walls Ecovillage - Oversize reports get more attention - Use color and photos for effective presentation • Then we did an eye contact exercise, gazing into a partners eyes. • Finally, design process was cancelled for lack of time.
22 June, Wednesday, Day 11, Summer Solstice, Full Moon, The Last Morning________________ • Hildur starts day with touching-partner, moving-joints exercises. • May offers insight to meaning of Full Moon. • Chris offers insight to meaning of Summer Solstice. • Max has insight about use of the name and makes a proposal: - Each Education Center decides the name they want to use for their presentation - What is common is a statement at the bottom saying: “This Course is endorsed by UNITAR and approved by GEN” • May says we already have approved a name. [see above] • Gio: Endorsement statement comes with certification. • Liz: Max proposal makes sense for flexibility. When do we say GEN approved? GEN agrees? What is the name of our group? • Hildur: We should design beautiful certificate only approved by Certification group. • May: UNITAR does not endorse courses; UNITAR endorses the curriculum. • Max: Emphasizes diversity of course titles. • Ross: How do we refer to this in shortened form? How about Ecovillage Living: Designing Urban and Rural Settlements. • Jonathan: Important to have a good clear name. We need a strong center, a good hub like Gaia University. Jonathan draws wheel with numerous spokes and well-defined center to emphasize his point. • Max: Why not GEN-ED? GEN has been working for ten years to develop reputation. • Hildur: Other people want to use GEN education. How about Ecovillage Academy? • May: Coming to agreement: Do we agree to diversity of titles/headings of courses while having common endorsement block? • Kosha: Wants common name for courses – more visible “brand” name. • Jonathan: We need a strong center. • Liz: Likes “Living Earth” as short name for us. • Max: But people already know GEN. • Ross: Concurs with Max. • Liz: Can we combine, so GEN’s “Living Earth” program? • May: We are now running over time. • Ina: Proposal: Leave it here as it is. Too important to have name to run this process into another ten minutes. There is not enough time. • OK – we need a subgroup to agree on name. • May: We have frame but not the words. Board takes responsibility for deciding on name after this meeting. • Then came a Fishbowl discussion – Relationship to the World – addressing such concerns as relationship to Gaia University and wider circle – more people would like to be part of this group. • Hildur: We can give this group a certificate for having completed first ToT. • Jonathan: What is certificate for? • Ina: Showing that you have authority to be a teacher. • Gio: It was agreed that we would certify courses. • May: We can offer ToTs for income. • Ina: I invite a couple more teachers who are already certified to offer training for more certified teachers. • Hildur: wants to spread certificates to more people. • Ross: Second issue: Advisory Board for approving honorary certificates. • May: We will trust Board to convene Advisory Board. • Jonathan: Wants to find a way that GEN members can be respected – included in working groups. Need to put out invitation to greater GEN to participate, so that they feel ownership. • Ina: Is it still possible for GEN to contribute to curriculum? Do we open our working groups? • Max: Leave this up to the focalizers. • Daniel: Yes, at the discretion of the focalizer. Include people from around the world. • Ross: Anyone wanting to join working groups should be encouraged to contact focalizer. • Daniel: Focalizer creates job description and wish list. • Kosha: If we want to create impression that we are open and democratic, then we need to back that up with action. • May: It would create great momentum to open up. If you are focalizer, be prepared to take on more energy. We need to invite everyone to get some momentum. • Max: We could open a blog to do this. • Daniel: Let’s create forum for communication between Project Director, Board, and focalizers. • Kosha: Do we need Public Relations Director? Or is this part of Communications group? • Ina: Two different levels – focalizer can invite people related to working groups. • Hildur: Certifiers need to have a certificate. • Daniel: This would be a rocky road. • Gio: This is really a diploma rather than a certificate. • Daniel: We are certifying a course…… • May: Time to talk about Gaia University - the need for distance. “First the leap, then the consolidation of ground.” Keep focus on our own projects – no collaboration. • Max: Our individual relationships are separate from group, yes? • Jonathan: Possibility of two sister educational initiatives under GEN. • Daniel: Not necessarily mutually exclusive – could be ways to be flexible. • Ina: We are open but not involved in organizational relationship. • May: Could be confusing to have two educational initiatives under one umbrella – need to be protective. • Ina: Could Andy join working group? • Jonathan: Not enough to sit patiently – need to articulate relationship. Should enter dialogue and communicate with world. • Massimo: Wants to support initiative to have contact – they’re doing good stuff. • Kosha: It would be more respectful to ask from GEN Board for endorsement. • Gio: As heartkeeper, worse that can happen is divide and conquer – do not damage anybody else. • May: Synthesis: Suggested as way to go forward with certifying teachers: One of us plus two other members. Role of focalizer to decide size of working groups. • Liz: People who co-facilitate a course will be considered to have taken a course. Focalizers need to write job description and wish list. • Ross: Regarding relationship with Gaia University: All we need to say is that ours is a 2-3 year pilot study to develop educational program. After Break • Split into Working Groups to discuss next steps. • Curriculum Committee: - Need to synthesize before moving forward - Need to get Minutes first – by 30 June - Re-identify Modules - Solicit contributions from writers by end of July - Rewriting in waves throughout August - Committee intensive refinement work during September - Goal to have Draft 3 completed by Autumn Equinox, finished in time to make publications for GEN+10 • Communications Group: - Will join with Curriculum Group after curriculum is finished - Concentrate on local name, brochure, curriculum – then move into 4 Keys, trying to finish up by beginning of October • Strategy Group: - Producing a Strategy Statement within 2-3 weeks - We see other groups working on supply side whereas Strategy Group works on demand side - Supporting May and Board but also ensuring field work is ongoing • Certification Group: - Certifying courses not trainers • Board: - Applications for first pilot studies by 1 Sept. Need process for applications. - Communications highest priority is making flyer (maybe at Sarvodaya), stationery, logo - Decision from GEN Board very quickly - May should produce quarterly report - Advisory Board: people with prestige receive quarterly reports, help us network - Expand membership of us – how to do that? - Reach out to people with experience teaching in this field - Monthly check-in with Project Director • Funding: - Brainstorming with key people to prepare a short Concept Plan • Both Geza and Ina express concerns about the need for translations of the curriculum • Final Circles and Intentions • ToT closes on 22 June 2005 at 12:33 local time.