[OSList] Summer research project idea: 'self organisation'

John Baxter via OSList oslist at lists.openspacetech.org
Fri Nov 28 20:20:02 PST 2014

Hi Kari

We might be thinking more in parallel than aligned.

I very much doubt I will submit anything to an academic journal... I can't
imagine many processes less pleasant!  Though I could find parts to spin
off into trade journals and the like.

But if others are already researching in an aligned field (are you
yourself?) I would be very happy to partner or pass on anything I produce
for publication.  Could you imagine a situation like that?

In the context of the rigours and process of academic research, my own
thoughts are closer to a literature review than a genuine research question.


*John Baxter*
*Cocreation Consultant & ​Co​Create Adelaide Facilitator*
jsbaxter.com.au <http://www.jsbaxter.com.au/> | CoCreateADL.com
0405 447 829
​ | ​
@jsbaxter_ <http://twitter.com/jsbaxter_>

*Thank you to everyone who came, helped or spread the good word about City
*Summary and links: cocreateadl.com/localgov/grill-summary/

On Fri, Nov 28, 2014 at 2:25 AM, Kári Gunnarsson <kari.gunnarsson at simnet.is>

> Hi John
> As an academic researcher I say ... yes, this needs to become, ... I like
> to see theorizing and testing, and more papers in academic journals for me
> to site.
> If we take the hypothesis from Owen that there is always self-organization
> at work, now in what conditions is this self-organization not functioning
> well.
> I would argue that we can find cultural elements that are toxic to
> self-organization, site lining it, driving it away from open discourse.
> When is such toxic environment the only solution, even if it dose not work
> seems to be to get ride of the people dealing behind the curtains and
> enforcing a strict and over-bloated management scheme to squeezes the
> profit out of the people.
> An example from ecology.
> Like lets say I grow round up resistant GMO feed grass, and I plant out
> the GMO seeds and put the chemical fertilizers and the roundup to kill of
> anything else. I have created a toxic environment but there is this one
> homogenous thing that can survive it.
> Now lets say my brother is not as addicted to proprietary DNA crops and
> has chosen to select many plant to grow in harmony where they feed off each
> other and reads all these aquaculture journals. He saves a ton in crop
> interventions and is more resilient to weather changes and pest attacks,
> loosing only 5% or perhaps 10% in a bad incident, while my toxic homogenous
> growing is devastated while I am ruined.
> ok... fun example.
> If we can identify the cultural elements that makes the space hostile,
> that is not-safe or simply closed, then we can offer the middle managers a
> tool to measure there cultural aspect of there organizational health,
> innovation, learning and efficiency. Then we can propose an intervention
> (in the form of an open space), on how to move the organization from
> unhealthy culture to a healthy one where we marginalize the violence of
> silencing and where we keep the space save for us humans to grow and
> prosper. As this is needed for all leading organizational cultures.
> ...
> so for the questions...
> To find what one needs to know to do self-organization, I would argue that
> one needs to understand how to make the space safe and how to invite
> participation for a bodily real theme. This is a sponsors job, but he
> sometimes needs a teacher to help him know the difference. Basically the
> precondition and the how to stuff we preach as open spacers every day.
> To find out what one needs to know in order to be an expert in
> self-organization, I would argue that one needs to understand many of the
> different ways one can throw a spanner in the works and be able to identify
> when it is the cultural norm of the management and/or owners to do so, and
> also for what reasons this is done. This is interesting for me as I would
> love to grow in understanding on when things are wrong in the culture but
> tolerated for the cases I work with. It could bring out new themes to open
> space on, and to energize people to open it everywhere where the
> preconditions are present. I think a little research will help us do just
> that.
> / Kári
> On 27 November 2014 at 01:25, John Baxter via OSList <
> oslist at lists.openspacetech.org> wrote:
>> Hello facilitators of self organisation
>> Let's take a moment to consider self organisation, as 'field' or
>> 'practice'.
>> I am scoping a summer project at the moment (in the southern hemisphere!).
>> I have been reading and learning all I can about self org.  There is less
>> than I expected at the heart of self org practice, but much more than I
>> realised in intersecting fields (e.g. in governance, democracy, community
>> organising, management, change, systems...).  There are also unanswered Qs
>> about what 'self org' *is* (indeed, if it is anything at all).
>> It might be worthwhile formalising this, through a focused research
>> project, and sharing the results in a report or the like.
>> Possible focus questions that come to mind for me are
>> - what does someone need to know to say "I do self organisation"?
>> - what would someone need to know to be an 'expert' in self org?
>> Would appreciate your perspective, as a practitioner-facilitator-fellow
>> wave rider:
>> What (if anything) do you think deserves to be done?
>> Who should be involved in doing it?
>> ​Thank you for contributing to the quest!
>> *John Baxter*
>> *Cocreation Consultant & ​Co​Create Adelaide Facilitator*
>> jsbaxter.com.au <http://www.jsbaxter.com.au/> | CoCreateADL.com
>> 0405 447 829
>> ​ | ​
>> @jsbaxter_ <http://twitter.com/jsbaxter_>
>> *Thank you to everyone who came, helped or spread the good word about
>> City Grill​​!*
>> *Summary and links: cocreateadl.com/localgov/grill-summary/
>> <http://cocreateadl.com/localgov/grill-summary/>*
>> _______________________________________________
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> --
> Kári Gunnarsson markþjálfi
> kari.gunnarsson at simnet.is
> https://www.facebook.com/heimsmynd
> (+354) 864 5189
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