BOOK OF PROCEEDINGS

 

 

Canadian Centres for Teaching Peace

 

Open Space Technology Meeting November 22, 23, 2004

National Culture of Peace Program

 

Held at McMaster University

Hamilton , Ontario

 

Prepared by

Pono Consultants International

 

People Conversing

 

 

 

Facilitator:  Judith Richardson, MA, BEd, CCC

 

Guiding Principles for our meeting: 

Whoever comes is the right people

Whenever it starts is the right time

Whatever happens is the only thing that could

Whenever it is over, it’s over’

 

One Law for our meeting:

Law of Mobility – if you are neither learning or contributing in your discussion group, move to another one !



The Book of Proceedings is a compilation of the raw data (uncensored/unedited) that arose from the Open Space Technology Meeting of November 22 and 23, 2004, to which participants were invited.  It is a snapshot of the brainstorming sessions recorded at the moment they were spoken (cranial eruptions!). Some of the conversations were recorded on handout sheets and others were taken from flip charts.

 

For a full report see the web site at http://www.peace.ca/CanadianAgenda2004.htm    

 

"The path of violence moves from sharp to sharper to sharpest, while the path of nonviolence moves from gentle to gentler to gentlest."

Dwarko Sundrani, last active disciple of Mahatma Gandhi



INVITATION LETTER - NATIONAL CULTURE OF PEACE PROGRAM SYMPOSIUM

 

Dear Canadian Peacebuilders and "Concerned Others",

Re:
November 21 - 23, 2004 Open Space Symposium; Theme: Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program in Canada -- Canadian Peace Initiative 

As a result of discussions among many peacebuilders and peace educators in Canada , Senator (retired) Douglas Roche and the Canadian Centres for Teaching Peace will be hosting an Open Space Conference with a theme: "Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program in Canada -- Canadian Peace Initiative ("CPI")".    We will be following the principles of the United Nations Culture of Peace and Non-violence Program.
  
The Symposium will commence at
4:00 pm Sunday November 21, 2004 with Guest Speaker David Adams (past director of UNESCO/UN International Year for the Culture of Peace) and continue to 5:00 pm Tuesday November 23, at McMaster University in Hamilton , Ontario . We will be utilizing an Open Space Technology, to encourage the particular participation of key stakeholders (institutions and individuals) whose mandate and passions impinge upon peace and non-violence in our families, communities and world. We are inviting representatives from Federal Ministries, Provincial Governments, Education, Religious Organizations, NGOs, business, unions, etc.   The simplicity and creativity of Open Space Technology is briefly described at: http://ponoconsultants.com/management/what_is_ost.html    and an Open Space Technology conference is discussed in http://www.ponoconsultants.com/management/what_is_an_ost_conference.html .  The professional facilitator for this event is Judith Richardson of Halifax .

I would like to take this opportunity to invite you and/or your delegate to participate in our Symposium. The Agenda and background information is available at the web site http://www.peace.ca/nationalcultureofpeace2004.htm .  The Earlybird Fee prior to October 31 is $200.00 for the 2.5 days ($250.00 after; Registration Form at http://www.peace.ca/registrationformCPI.htm ; reduced rates for students and retirees).  The Fee is designed to cover our costs, and any surplus will be contributed to the Canadian Peace Education Foundation. Coffee and juice will be provided during the morning and afternoon.

You may also be interested to know that we are hosting two other major concurrent events at
McMaster University :
(1) Peace and Leadership 3-day workshop
November 15 - 17, 2004         http://www.peace.ca/leadershipworkshop.htm
(2) Third Annual Peace Education Conference in
Canada November 18 - 21, 2004         http://www.peace.ca/CanadianAgenda2004.htm    

You may wish to take some or all of these into account in your planning to visit Hamilton . Our conferences and symposium are a rare chance for Canadians from all across the country to high-light peace education, research and a Culture of Peace in Canada . We hope you can see your way clear to join us and/or advise your colleagues of this interesting and valuable opportunity and event.  The time is ripe to act on a National Culture of Peace Program in Canada .  Such a Canadian Peace Initiative will have a positive impact on your programs, as well as a general reduction in violence.

If you would like any further information, I would be pleased to discuss it. I would also be interested in your input, feedback, comments and suggestions. I can assure you that your participation will be well appreciated by Canadian peace educators (and Canadians generally), and look forward to your response.

Yours truly,

CANADIAN CENTRES FOR TEACHING PEACE

 

Robert A. Stewart, C.A. , C.M.C.  Director  (email: stewartr [at] peace.ca )

and  Douglas Roche, Canadian Senator 1998 - 2004 and Chair of the Middle Powers Initiative


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

 

A Two-day Open Space Technology Meeting following a week of previous meetings, including engaging Youth! (see http://www.peace.ca/CanadianAgenda2004.htm )

The first day opened with remarks from Doug Roche, retired Canadian Senator, Chair of the Middle Powers Initiative and author of the book ‘The Human Right to Peace’.

Judith Richardson opened the space and invited Topics for discussion to be generated by participants.

 

Issues and Opportunities for a

National Culture of Peace Program

 

The workshop was facilitated using Open Space Technology. Open Space Technology is one of the leading large group methodologies used around the world by corporations, community groups, public sector organizations, and associations. The process creates the conditions for the agenda to be built during the meeting and for all identified issues and opportunities to have a chance to be discussed by whoever is interested. The meeting starts with the chairs arranged in a large circle and breaks into small groups. The methodology ensures that all participants have the greatest opportunity to learn from the expertise amongst participants, to problem solve together, to be innovative and creative, and to identify any issues and opportunities. Open Space Technology enables people to connect and create a community of practice in a constructive and supportive manner like few other meeting methodologies.

What happens when you take the tools of dialogue, self-organization, learning communities, presencing, and profound change, and apply them to community engagement?  Deliberative collective conversation, at its essence, is the inner experience of interconnectedness.

Many of us have experienced moments of participatory consciousness in a group that suddenly found itself on the same wavelength, moving in synch, creating effortlessly, or connecting in warm silence. Deliberative collective conversation is a pattern of such moments. Through small daily acts of engagement, practiced actions become “habits” that grow into new cultural patterns of interaction.  A master plan, experts, or government officials do not create deliberative collective conversation, small daily acts of engagement does.  Imagine how the following three habits, if embedded in our culture, could build the basis for respectful workplaces:

• the habit of listening to understand the “other” before advocating a position

• the habit of reflecting on, and revealing, one’s own assumptions, agreements and values

• the habit of sensing together the emergent future of the collective, the whole.

An important catalyst to deliberative collective conversation is the process leader—the one who facilitates the experience of participatory consciousness.   Process leaders create the container for building trust and shared understanding amid diversity and difference.  The process leaders embody the values and attitudes of deliberative collective conversation, model the practices, deepen the conversation, and raise the octave for the transformation from separation to connectedness to occur.  Robert Stewart played a role as process leader in nurturing the capacity of individuals and the group to find their voices and connect with others, as well as the conveners in the groups.

People describe times in the group when the boundaries normally experienced between them seem to dissolve.  At these times, people seem to make the deliberate choice not to see their interests as separate from anyone else’s, and in so doing they begin to experience the sweetness of unity, and the harmonious forward movement of the whole.  The gathering settles into a graceful and profound flow of communication, understanding, and knowing with all present.  There is no loss of identity; rather there is a heightened sense of each one’s essential part in the whole, and rightness about every word that is offered and every action that is taken.  This is a liberating formation in which people are able to practice knowing their sameness, and simultaneously offer their unique gifts.

 


Open Space Technology

The law of mobility in OST is central to encouraging participants to be intentional and responsible with regard to their own energy -- their learning and contribution.   If the "connection" is not there, move to a new group, have coffee.... -- thus making new patterns of interaction possible.  Of the four principles, “Whenever it starts is the right time and Whenever it’s over, it’s over”, encourage participants to take responsibility for using the time and space productively -- rather than having the time and space (meeting format) manage what they can do.  “Whoever comes are the right people and Whatever happens is the only thing that could” help to put the moment in context and encourage letting go of judgments and connecting in the now.  Neither is part of our dominant culture and the permission and reminder are helpful.

A large part of leadership is learning to be in the creative tension of exploration – where different questions arise – rather than moving to the habitual tendency of action without reflection.  For the most part the groups on Wednesday stayed in that exploration. A total of 19 topics were posted.  Full reports are attached in the Book of Proceedings, Agenda Topics and description of proceedings follow.  At the end of the day, participants expressed surprise and gratitude. They were surprised at how much they learned and the common issues. They expressed appreciation for the chance to connect and to talk about what mattered to them rather than a pre-planned agenda.

 

Agenda Topics generated by participants:

Participants were invited to create the agenda. They came to the centre of the circle and wrote down their topics in a few words. Each topic was announced and posted on the wall. This wall became the “Bulletin Board”. Times for discussion and room numbers were assigned for each topic.

The agenda creation process continued until all topics were exhausted. Participants were reminded that if any topic that was important to them did not get discussed, the responsibility would rest with the person who had the idea and did not post it on the agenda.

Nineteen agenda items emerged:

Topics Generated Day One

Create a Minister of Peace for Canada to implement the Culture of Peace program and alter the balance of discussion and decision of Government

Leadership, Empowerment, Followership, Influence, Psychology, Change Management

How to maximize the potential of existing peace organizations and peace education, activism in promoting a culture of peace – is a separate organization necessary?

Engaging the Media

How can the concept of the culture of peace be mainstreamed to the Canadian Public?  (highlighting the national culture of peace program)?

Gathering/collating information for the 2005 mid-decade report from Canada to the UN.

Conflict transformation mechanism so “we” “don’t fight”

Language and the culture of peace (non-violent communication)

Resources – how to sell peace (marketing strategy) –info  --people –money  --time

Why should I support a culture of peace – what’s in it for me?

Building a culture of peace in a consumer culture.

Contradictions in Canadian Foreign Policy – problem of co-optation

Exploring linkages with universities/post-secondary institution

An invitation to bring Canadian perspective on culture of peace to International projects: Peace Trees - Bethlehem 2005, Peace Trees - Siberia 2006, Global leadership Forum Istanbul – Annually

Canadian – US Dialogue

Does it take revolutionary means to transform the state?

What are the impediments to achieving a culture of peace?

Why do so many of us come to accept systemic violence?

Economic inequities (promoted by WTO policies) promote violence in and between States.

Media and mainstreaming

 

Note:  Mid-afternoon of day two we opened space for final actions.  The invitation of OST is to follow individual interest, passion and learning styles.  The question arose around how to create an identity of something that had not been defined.  Although several topics were generated, the group began to suggest other processes so that they could stay together.  The group decided to all join in a concept map of a Canadian Culture of Peace Program – some chose not to participate.  During the discussion a passionate discussion erupted.

 

Afternoon Topics for next steps:

Concept map of CCOPP

Create an identity

Seek Funding for CCOPP Projects

Prepare Canadian report on Culture of Peace activities

Identify Potential Stakeholders in CCOPP and convene conference of stakeholders

Plan of Action

Explore relationship between Canadian Culture of Peace Program and U of Alberta

 

Reports Follow for those topics discussed.


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Linking with universities, international projects

 

Name of Convener:

Renee Vaugeois

 

Name of Participants:

Marina Tyasto (visiting from Russia ), Sue McGregor, Anna Shell

 

Highlights Discussed:

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

Marina will send invitations to Global Leadership Forum ( tyasto@sapa.nsk.su )

 

Resources Required:

 


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

 

Name of Topic: Concept map of CCOPP

 

Name of Convener:

Sue McGregor

 

Name of Participants:

Everyone remaining

 

Highlights Discussed:

Everyone wrote down their ideas of what needs to be done, placed sticky notes on the wall.  We formed a concept map that leads us to the future actions.

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

Form an interim group to continue energy. Will use a transparent, interactive feedback/input process to take the initiatives forward to next year’s conference.

The organization entity

See:
1. CCOPP Summary Statement  (in HTML)   (in Microsoft Word)
2. CCOPP Initial Action Plan   (in HTML)   (in Microsoft Word)

 

Resources Required:

Energy, compassion, internet, e-mail, time, people.


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Building a culture of peace in consumer culture.

 

Name of Convener:

Sue McGregor

 

Name of Participants:

Sue, Adam, Marina, Renee, Shall, Adele, Megan, Stephanie, Don

 

Highlights Discussed:

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

 

Resources Required:

Identify and connect with others who are interested in this issue in Canada


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Creation of a minister of peace in Canada to implement a culture of peace (part of a double session convened with Robert Stewart on leadership)

 

Name of Convener:

Saul Arbess

 

Name of Participants:

Bob Stewart, Saul Arbess, Joanna Santa Barbara , Myron Kramer (Veterans Affairs Hamilton ), Adele Buckley, Marina Tyasto, Megan Burrows, Doug Roche, Monica Ocknik, Pramila Sinha.

 

Highlights Discussed: 

Basically, seen as a good and viable idea to affect cabinet-level decisions in the direction of non-violent outcomes of conflict.  The idea of a stand alone commission on peace made up of NGOs and prominent Canadians for oversight and input to minister also supported.  Issues which arose were how long it would take to establish an under resourced minister, how long to build a constituency, perhaps better to try to create influence across government instead of in one minister.  However, an identified minister to coordinate all government peace-related activity seen as a good thing.

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

 

Resources Required:

Funding of our working group to carry on and to liaise with other global initiatives.


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Media and mainstreaming

 

Name of Convener:

Stephanie and David

 

Name of Participants:

Stephanie, David, Ray, Adam, Megan

 

Highlights Discussed:

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

Develop alternative media from culture of peace (CPNN, etc).  Message should be: we live in a culture of violence and we need to change society toward a culture of peace in all its aspects.  There is already a paradigm shift (conscious that violence is outmoded, need for change).

 

Resources Required:

Ambassador for peace (like Angelina Jolie, war child)

Tom Rippon  avalon100@pacificcoast.net is facilitating the development of CPNN-Canada


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Contradictions in Canadian foreign policy and Canadian/US dialogue

 

Name of Convener:

Anne Goodman / David Adams

 

Name of Participants:

Anne Goodman, David Adams, Saul Arbess, Ray Cunnington, Adele Buckley

 

Highlights Discussed:

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

1.      Overpowered by other ministries (as the ambassador of Disarmament was)

2.      Issue of interdisciplinary vs disciplinary of ministers

 

Resources Required:

Maybe a better idea would be a civilian initiative/peace commission that would then make recommendations to all ministries and departments.


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Mid decade report for UN (UNESCO culture of peace in Canada )

 

Name of Convener:

Don Grayson

 

Name of Participants:

Sue McGregor, David Adams, Shall Sinha, Renee Vaugeois, Stephanie Manson

 

Highlights Discussed:

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

 

Resources Required:

In place, passion, commitment, hang-to-it-ness

Donald Grayston  grayston@sfu.ca is following up as facilitator, with a group of volunteers


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Locate impediments to culture of peace

 

Name of Convener:

Ray Cunnington

 

Name of Participants:

Wendy Hamblet, Pramila Sinha, Adam Khan, Anne Goodman

 

Highlights Discussed:

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

 

Resources Required:

Define peace positively (not the mere absence of war), ongoing exploration of its ideals

 


Open Space Report

Issues and Opportunities for a National Culture of Peace Program

November 22, 23, 2004

                                                                                  

Name of Topic: Leadership and governance

Infrastructure

Is a new organization necessary, or should we work with the existing one?

 

Name of Convener:

Bob Stewart

 

Name of Participants:

Bob Stewart, Saul Arbess, Joanna Santa Barbara , Myron Kramer (Veterans Affairs Hamilton ), Adele Buckley, Marina Tyasto, Megan Burrows, Doug Roche, Monica Ocknik, Pramila Sinha.

 

Highlights Discussed:  

 

Future Action/Next Steps/Recommendations:

 

Resources Required:

Lots of money, people, information - see tomorrow’s report.

Conflict transformation mechanism (so we do no fight with each other).


Closing Circle Comments

 

I appreciate the ongoing activity and momentum, enormous strength and commitment to get us to this point.  I applaud the news it will be ongoing.

Glad to see intent of so many people fighting for airtime.  Looking forward to progress.

Looking forward to future and my involvement.  Glad to see something forming

Happy to see culture of peace alive.  All part of peace continuum.

I don’t think one can move forward without arguing.

Can only learn through arguing.  This weekend is a turning point.

Wonderful to see open space work.   Was disillusioned and now see a culture of peace alive

No way to peace….. peace is the way

A lot of effort this week

Growing experience for me

I believe conflict is the life line of growth.  Need conflict to create dialogue or listen.  Hope I will be a part of this movement.

Enjoyed being part of this circle – invigorating and frustrating

Takes a lot of time – disagreement to move to agreement

Great people.  Privileged to be a part of the big circle and the smaller circle.

Flexible single mindedness – strengthen resolve.

I learned a lot about Culture of Peace.

To see people such as you inspires and makes me want to work harder in communities.

I live in a culture of war – work with groups who come home from war.  A lot of people outside this room don’t know there is a culture of peace.  Yellow is the color of a CoP.

This is the greatest cause to be involved in.

Program valuable - I am sure in a few years we are going to look back and thank the hosts for organizing this meeting

Went to a level of depth I couldn’t imagine during our time together and with this process

I’m fully confident we can do it together.

Some of the most violent people I’ve met are peace people – don’t walk the talk.  Need to ground the vision as sensitively as possible.  Inclusivity is very important to me.  Honor bound to try to incorporate in all that we do.

The program concluded with Robert Stewart, David Adams (advisory), Doug Roche (Honourary Chairman), Sue McGregor, Don Grayson all working on a steering committee.

I am attaching the following Canadian Culture of Peace Program ("CCOPP") Reports for your information:

1. CCOPP Summary Statement  (in HTML)   (in Microsoft Word)
2. CCOPP Initial Action Plan   (in HTML)   (in Microsoft Word)
3. CCOPP Leadership & Peace Workshop Report   (in HTML)   (in Microsoft Word)
4. CCOPP Organization Network (Draft) (in HTML)  

and our amazing, 60 page Youth Day Report (in pdf)

 

 

 

My work, speaking and writing is in convening conversations in businesses, corporations and communities that shift attitudes and behaviors to embrace potential, high performance and profitability.  This work has taught me how much can be learned by observing the best of what is already happening.  We are listening to the stories of individuals who have become quiet leaders—change agents. With solidity and spaciousness, their experience of connectedness can simply burst out as acts of love for the community.  Their stories inspire and show the way.  So where do we jump in? As process leaders we can help to build the container for a culture of dialogue and connectedness, while we pursue our own inner work—some call it spiritual practice—that lies at the heart and soul of deep democracy. Aware of the collective importance of each of our own small efforts to create new habits, we can also observe our own practice of engaged citizenship. Let us begin by cultivating just one habit of deliberative collective conversation.  I propose this one: to smile and listen to understand the “other” before advocating a position.  This one act alone could be the ripple in the pond that creates waves.  Judith Richardson, MA ( www.ponoconsultant.com ) ( www.emergentfeminine.com )


Resource Ideas from participants!

www.thepeacebook.com

www.cisv.org

www.cisv.ca

www.charityvillage.

www.bp208.ca/contest_checklist.php

www.antiapathy.org

www.cultivatingpeace.ca

www.takingitglobal.org

www.the-hub.net

www.photovoice.com/index.htm

www.uclagary.genderpolicy.ca

www.thepeacecompany.com

 

Books and other resources:

Shake Hands with the Devil- Romeo Dallaire

The Human Rights to Peace- Doug Roche

How to Win Friends and Influence People- Dale Carnegie

Servant Leadership- Robert Greenleaf

Open Space Technology - www.ponoconsultants.ca ; www.openspaceworld.org

The Practice of Peace, by Harrison Owens

Classroom Interactive CDROM – Peaceful Expression of Difference

  (see www.ponoconsultants.com )

Avril Lavigne DVD (#3) “ My World” – Knockin’ on Heavens Door (with War Child references)

Peace Songs CD http://www.warchild.ca

 

Organizations:

Canadian Peace Research and Education Association (“CPREA”)

Leaders Today

Social Capital Partners

Corporate Knights

Rotary International http://www.rotary.org

Hamilton Culture of Peace Network http://www.hwcn.org/link/cpd/Culture_of_Peace.html

Classroom connections http://www.classroomconnections.ca

Ashoka Foundation

Montessori Schools http://www.peace.ca/montessorisites.htm

Canadian Centres for Teaching Peace http://www.peace.ca

 

A great "THANK YOU" to all the participants.  Without you, none of this would be possible.

For more information, contact Bob Stewart at stewartr [at] peace.ca