[Springboard] Dialogue on the Future

M. George Walters m.george.walters at verizon.net
Fri Jun 6 08:48:38 EDT 2008


M. George Walters
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-----Original Message-----
From: springboard-bounces at wedgeblade.net
[mailto:springboard-bounces at wedgeblade.net] On Behalf Of
marykdsouza at vsnl.com
Sent: Thursday, June 05, 2008 21:37
To: Springboard Dialogue
Subject: Re: [Springboard] Dialogue on the Future

Thank you for raising these questions.  They are mine also.

I do feel that the systemic and structural issues have not been dealth with.
This is perhapswhere we need topay atttention.  The whole theme of "Whole
systems transition" is becoming critical.

I also feel that  I have lost faith in the inexhaustable energy of spirit
and have placed a great deal of faith in the exhaustable resources of our
planet earth.

In humility,

----- Original Message -----
From: Larry Philbrook <icalarry at ms69.hinet.net>
Date: Wednesday, May 28, 2008 11:06 pm
Subject: [Springboard] Dialogue on the Future
To: <Undisclosed-Recipient:;>

> Dear Colleagues and Friends
> I have been thinking a lot about the future lately.  I have been 
> in Taiwan 17 years and am still enjoying myself and learning a lot 
> but I also see my role as changing - many more of our colleagues 
> are fully capable facilitators and wise mentors for the next 
> generation so what is my role?  The past year I have been asked to 
> work in 9 countries besides Taiwan and each offered a great 
> opportunity for me to learn and interchange with new cultures and 
> great people.  I am doing my best to make no assumptions and to 
> continue to go with the flow of what life is offering me.  
> As many of you know my organization, the Institute of Cultural 
> Affairs, will be doing our 7th global conference in Japan. This 
> represents 28 years of conversation about what is going on in the 
> world.  I am trying to figure out what the critical questions are 
> that need to be asked and who might be people to involve in the 
> conversation.  Below you will see the official context from the 
> website if you want to read it you can. I thought I would share my 
> questions and see if anyone else wants to share either in this 
> dialogue on or offline. 
> 1)    I have been seeing a lot of negative signs the last several 
> years - signs of hopelessness like Iraq and perhaps the final 
> destruction of the myth of America as the good guys - What are 
> signs of hope for you in the world today? 
> 2)    Despite the enormous efforts made each year to address the 
> world's persistent development challenges, the international 
> community can point to only incremental impact on the status quo. 
> Why?  What is going wrong or right with societal and community 
> transformation?
> 3)    What are the critical questions that it would be worth 
> having a group research and discuss in depth?
> I figure if I am asking others to venture their answers the least 
> I can do is give it a try so here are my current thoughts:
> 1.    What are signs of hope for you in the world today? 
> .         For me a sign of hope is that the choice for the 
> democratic candidate for president in the US is between a black 
> man and a woman - both seen as strong and viable
> .         For me a sign of hope is some of the youth I am working 
> with in Hong Kong who are trying to figure out how to be young, 
> Chinese and in transformative relationships
> .         I connected with a group call the Generative Change 
> Community (GCC) who are supporting the use of dialogue in deep 
> conflict situations like the southern Philippines - adding the 
> concept of dialogue before decision-making to deepened the trust 
> and build community.
> 2.    Why? What is going wrong or right with societal and 
> community transformation?
> .         I see the business of development as being a major 
> driver - one of my colleagues was talking about working with an 
> NGO and no one wants to talk about the costs they have because it 
> will reveal how much their operation overheads eat into the 
> donations this is even in internal conversations - How do we build 
> viable development models based on real costs without getting 
> caught by the same profit motive of the private sector?
> .         Value based NGO's have learned that they can use 
> development to convert people to their belief system which has 
> long term consequences on the communities and individuals involved 
> this shows up a lot in madrassah movement and Christians teaching 
> English in China - At what point is service for the needs of 
> others and at what point service to my own vision of how others 
> should be?
> .        Development that is tided more to the givers needs than 
> the communities - wheat growing in Africa because that was the 
> technology - cash crops over food because of the need to pay debts 
> to donor countries
> 3.    What are the critical questions that it would be worth 
> having a group research and discuss in depth?
> .         The economics of today and tomorrow are driving the poor 
> to be poorer and the rich to be dramatically richer - expectation 
> of return of investments of 10+ % is very destructive - How do we 
> shift the context of more more more?
> .         Healing has become a business how do we return to 
> healing as a vocation - levels of stress and cancer grow every 
> year - we have begun to have diseases of the poor countries and 
> diseases of the developed countries.  One way to know if you are 
> becoming developed is the increase in cases of certain types of 
> cancer.
> .         How is facilitation a transformational role in 
> organizational and individual development? What is the edge today 
> in facilitation?
> Just a few thoughts
> With respect, Larry
> --------------------------------------------------------------
> My name is Larry Philbrook 
> I am with the ICA in Taiwan - I have been with the ICA since 1970 
> based in 6 nations and have worked in more than 30.  I have worked 
> in community development since 1968 and with organizational change 
> since 1984.
> I am happily married to Evelyn Kurihara Philbrook and we have two 
> wonderful children Lela and Lloyd both of whom are now in Chicago.
> -------------------------------------------------------------------
> ------------------------------------------
> GLOBAL CONFERENCE ICA International Unlocking the potential to 
> create a new world together
> "Despite the enormous efforts made each year to address the 
> world's persistent development challenges, the international 
> community can point to only incremental impact on the status quo. 
> As a result, many have called for a paradigm shift, in order to 
> usher in a new era of holistic social change. 
> The Institute of Cultural Affairs International's 7th Global 
> Conference on Human Development: Unlocking the Potential to Create 
> a New World Together will serve as a launching pad for realizing 
> the paradigm shift needed to overcome our deepest human 
> development challenges. Breakthrough is possible only through a 
> comprehensive, integrated approach, which facilitates the exchange 
> of information and collaboration across disciplines and areas of 
> interest. 
> The 7th Global Conference will take place over five days, from 17-
> 21 November 2008 in Takayama, Japan, and will include more than 
> 1000 participants. It will bring together key stakeholders from 
> civil society, government, and the private sector to explore our 
> most pressing human development challenges and design 
> groundbreaking approaches to resolving them. By bringing together 
> peoples from the various sectors, as well as different fields 
> within each sector, a tremendous opportunity for partnership is 
> achieved. To guarantee the productive engagement of all 
> participants, facilitators will be engaged to guide the conference 
> process. "
> The Central Challenges for this Global Conference are: 
> 1.  The Effective Governance and Protection of Human Rights
> 2.  Persistence of Poverty
> 3.  Environmental Degradation and Climate Change
> 4.  Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Livelihoods
> 5.  Violent Conflict and Social Disintegration
> 6.  Access to Heathcare and Preventing the Spread of Diseases
> 7.  Literacy and Education
> 8.  Consumerism and Over-Consumption
> 9.  Disconnectedness and Barriers to Engagement
> 10. Private Sector Collaboration
> http://ica-international.org/global-conference/index.html

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