It seems to me that “Large Scale Interactive Events” is a rather abstract inclusion here. Bunker and Alban offer:

“This method can be adapted to all kinds of problem-solving and cross-functional coordination issues.” (1997, p 155)

Which is hardly helpful because, as it is not so much a method as a specific tool taken from one of the other methods, this statement could be made for any specific tool taken out of the overall context of any of the methods in their survey. For example, mind mapping or creating a shared timeline could both be “adapted to all kinds of problem-solving and cross-functional coordination issues.”

Of course, on a purely abstract level, the match of “Large Scale Interactive Events” with “Open Space” seems appropriate if for no other reason that the sheer difficulty in finding a niche, I’m confused a bit on how these two fit with Simu-Real and Work-out, which are both, apparently very closely tied to problem identification and practicing process to address that problem. “Large Scale Interaction” and “Open Space” are both apparently very open and willing containers for whatever one wishes to contain. To say that these all four share “participative work” experience is to ignore that every large group method includes participative work, and it’s not clear to me how any of these methods is more or less “whole-system” than any of the others, unless, in the case of, for example, “Open Space” that “whole-system” means, though I do not think that it does, these can be “adapted to all kinds of problem-solving and cross-functional coordination issues.”

This “method” is no more or less a useful container than any of the other events, whether they are classes or ritual, that are already native to the community in focus for this application paper. At this point, I fear I may have decided to focus on the wrong set of methodologies, and might be best served by going back to the original list and picking out specific tools that seem useful from the other methods I can adapt.

As merely a container, I do not see that there is a significant advantage to using this method over the already existing and native methods used by the community in focus.

Posted by John Bell on June 8, 2006
Tags: Putting Community In

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