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Methods for Strategic Collaboration


Methods for Strategic Collaboration

Please join the conversation if you are interested in blending The World Cafe with other methods and models such as Open Space Technology, Appreciative Inquiry, Polarity Management, Spiral Dynamics, Theory U, the Enneagram and more.

Members: 243
Latest Activity: Jan 23

20% discount for World Cafe Community ~ Phoenix or Berlin for Methods for Strategic Collaboration Foundations Training

Hi all,

You are cordially invited to Phoenix, April 13-16, or Berlin, June 8-11, for the Methods for Strategic Collaboration Foundations Training.  Since 2003, change leaders from 5 continents have enjoyed collaborating while learning about how to blend and scale Appreciative Inquiry, Open Space Technology, World Cafe, Polarity Mapping.  This year, I'm introducing ROC-Return on Collaboration, which builds on the best of Appreciative Inquiry.  

If you are interested in receiving a 20% discount, as a member of the World Cafe Community, please contact me directly at  

More details can be found here:

Warm wishes from the fragrant desert,



May I enter?

Started by Maria Amélia Martins-Loução. Last reply by Christine Whitney Sanchez Feb 2, 2015. 4 Replies

openmind kfe

Started by Xavier Ginoux. Last reply by Xavier Ginoux Jul 9, 2013. 9 Replies

Mindful Relationships

Started by Christine Whitney Sanchez. Last reply by Susmita Barua Jun 25, 2013. 8 Replies

Help me pitch a World Cafe to my town!

Started by Jarett Sanchez. Last reply by Cheryl Lyon Jan 23, 2012. 9 Replies

Comment Wall


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Comment by Maureen McCarthy on August 19, 2009 at 7:15pm
Hello ~

I have been facilitating World Cafe's in many parts of the world as well as Open Space and I am the creator of The State of Grace Document. I am most passionate about blending tools that hold space for others to do whatever they desire. Lately my husband and business partner, Zelle Nelson, and I have been studying Dynamic Governance, a.k.a. known as Sociocracy (having nothing to do with socialism) because it's another tool that holds space and allows organizations and communities to be run using servant leadership as it's model. We are currently combining World Cafe, Open Space, the State of Grace Document, the Work and now Dynamic Governance at the Institute we're part of in Asheville, NC, USA called Collaboration in Community. Our desire is to build, in essence, an incubator to create and test possibilities for creating healthier communities and a wiser future...together. Western North Carolina where we are located has been known as a sustainability capital for many years. The Institute's physical location is on a gorgeous mountain/lake piece of property (200 acres) called Highland Lake. So if you have anything you want to test out and then gather people from around the world to learn, come see what's happening here. David and Juanita were just here and they fell in love with it.

Dynamic Self Governance Flyer 9-09D.pdfWe decided to bring John Buck, the US expert on Dynamic Governance and author of "We the People: Consenting to a Deeper Democracy" to Asheville for a 3-day weekend workshop September 18-20 so we could learn more. Attached is all the info in a PDF file or you can go to: Dynamic Self Governance Workshop Asheville for info.

Is anyone out there combining World Cafe/Open Space and Dynamic Self Governance (Sociocracy)? We'd love to hear other's experiences.
Comment by Tenneson Woolf on August 18, 2009 at 8:43am
This is a great question -- thanks Christine: “What are the underlying principles and practices that bring your favorite method(s) alive and how can we use them to manifest strategic collaboration across a full range of developmental stages to serve the highest good for each and all?”

I'll live this one as I host / work then next few weeks, and offer what I can back to the center. I like the virtual OS. However, I'm largely off line through Sept 7. Will share as I can. Will look forward to the rich drink when I can. Thanks all.
Comment by Ulrich Soeder on August 18, 2009 at 7:15am
How could we best reach out to other communities and invite them for collective cross-pollination?

Every method / group / organisation representing one table within the World as Café?
This, of course, is an incredibly World Café centric notion ; ) ...
Comment by Siobhan Champ-Blackwell on August 17, 2009 at 6:47am
I have been combining WC with Open Space, with Christine's help. My goal is to bring community groups and libraries together to work on common projects increasing access to reliable health information. we start with the WC conversations as a way to get to know each other, learn what each brings to the table, learn about the community we are all a part of. We then move into Open Space as a way to further network with the people we have just met on topics identified during the "harvest round. " I have used this process in several communities, and have had numerous and varied outcomes, none of which i would have predicted when i started!

That, for me, is the thing that I find most important about this blending process. Taking the WC further into the Open Space process moves the group into a place where they begin to do more than network and learn, but instead start to act. And they act in ways that have come out of the interaction of the WC. No one comes to the workshop with an agenda of what they are going to leave with, so its all open to the moment. A very scary and powerful process...
Comment by Donald Proffit on August 17, 2009 at 6:12am
Thanks for the invite!
Comment by Christine Whitney Sanchez on August 16, 2009 at 5:58pm
Thanks, Ulrich, Eugene, Edna, Doug, Kelvy, Pat, Tenneson, and Ria for showing up and sharing your wisdom about the "fusion of the nutritious food and drinks" we offer to the world.

I’ve been thinking about a potential way for us to organize an experiment that could riff off of Kelvy's idea to have the “essence of each method/framework in one place - a phrase and a key image - kind of a touchstone.. ?”

It sounds like all of you are familiar with Open Space Technology. Imagine that we are sitting in a big circle that reaches around the world. In the center of the open space are virtual sheets of paper and markers inviting each of us to take responsibility for our passion by hosting a breakout discussion as a conversation thread, as Ulrich has already done in the "Conversation" section above.

At the end of this message, we will open the space for your conversation threads that respond to the question, “What are the underlying principles and practices that bring your favorite method(s) alive and how can we use them to manifest strategic collaboration across a full range of developmental stages to serve the highest good for each and all?”

For those who are interested in participating in this experiment as the convenor of a “breakout conversation thread” - your commitment is to host the conversation on your topic (naturally referring to the World Café principles) and then report back to the whole Methods for Strategic Collaboration Group on September 1 by posting the highlights/harvest on this “Conversation Wall.”

Just a reminder that whoever comes are the right people, whatever happens is the only thing that could have, whenever it starts is the right time and when it’s over, it’s over.

Have fun as bumble bees, cross-pollinating the conversation threads and as butterflies, in personal reflection.

The space is open. Enjoy!
Comment by Ulrich Soeder on August 15, 2009 at 5:20am
Hi all, dear Christine,

This is a meta-communication comment.

I'd like to suggest to continue the very interesting conversations that are emerging here in the conversations section. That would make it easier to navigate through the contributions. We then can add tags to the different threads so the contributions become visible in the whole internet.

The different topics I have heard so far are around

• personal experiences with blending different approaches / good practice / best practice
• benefits of blending different approaches
• the essence of different approaches / knowing about different approaches
• principles for blending different approaches / underlying premises for blending different approaches
• theoretical aspects of blending different approaches
Comment by Tenneson Woolf on August 14, 2009 at 6:07pm
Hi Everyone. Peeking in for a bit here before several days on the road. Have always found it helpful to blend methods -- all the regular reasons of purpose, group size, sometimes a shift in form of interaction. Much of my experience in such is from an Art of Hosting perspective. Hosting learning events. Hosting client gatherings.

Earlier today I was in email exchange with a client who wanted a few tips on how to use the AoH for an upcoming meeting over 2.5 days. I offered the following framework, which speaks a bit for me of practice (what to do at levels of scale) and underlying framework (emergence and selforganization). For your stirrings...

Here's a set of principles...

1. Be present (help people arrive to more that just a meeting. Arrive with intent to work on the specific purpose. Arrive with invitation to work multiple realms of learning together -- mind, heart, spirit.... And over the course of 2.5 days, reinvite presence in each of the sections.)

2. Have a good question (have always found it helpful to have some level of big question about context and need so that it is felt among the group. Some people feel shy about getting to specifics -- "this issue of project xyz." Don't be. Invite the intelligence in the room to the big and to the specifics.)

3. Choose a listening tool (with the assumption that the wisdom you need is in the room, the work is finding ways to access it. Not just to pry it out of people, but to let the wisdom of each co-mingle into a whole. What is available to the group is always more and different than what is available to us as individuals. Café, Open Space, Circle -- these are forms of listening.)

4. Harvest (make visible what you create together. I tend to give attention to content -- yes, be creative about how it is captured and shared, process -- yes, process is the work and helps us all work with more communal capacity, relationship -- convene conversation, harvest relations, and energy field -- yup, that sense of energy, spirit. The latter three take more to name but are really helpful).
Comment by Pat Taviss on August 14, 2009 at 12:02pm
As I reinvent my practice, I am moving into post merger integration with a friend of mine who is a high-level strategist. My role is on the culture side of successful integrations. My intention is to combine aspects of World Cafe with appreciative inquiry, and of course some open space techniques.

I will keep you posted as we move forward with our new venture, Maestro and Associates.
Comment by Kelvy Bird on August 14, 2009 at 7:01am
Somehow would be useful to have the essence of each method/framework in one place - a phrase and a key image - kind of a touchstone.. ?

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