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Chattanooga: Community With A Vision

13 minute documentary of two Community Visioning Initiatives in Chattanooga, Tennessee (US)

Stefan Pasti's insight:

This writer’s interest in Community Visioning Initiatives was inspired instantly when, in 1994, he watched a documentary titled "Chattanooga:  Community with a Vision" (13 minutes). The video documents two very successful Community Visioning Initiatives organized by the non-profit organization Chattanooga Venture (Chattanooga, Tennessee USA)—one in 1984, and a follow-up in 1993.  The 1984 Chattanooga Community Visioning Project (“Vision 2000”), attracted more than 1,700 participants, and produced 40 community goals—which resulted in the implementation of 223 projects and programs, the creation of 1,300 permanent jobs, and a total financial investment of 793 million dollars.

 

This writer advocates for a combination of preliminary surveys to 150 local leaders (as preparation for Community Visioning Initiatives), time-intensive Community Visioning Initiatives supported by many

“Community Teaching and Learning Centers” (offering workshops suggested by the preliminary surveys), and “sister community” relationships as a starting point for accelerating solution-oriented activity, and creating more “close-knit” communities…communities with a healthy appreciation for each others strengths, communities with a well-developed capacity to resolve even the most difficult challenges—and communities which demonstrate a high level of compassion for their fellow human beings.

 

[Note:  New document from the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative:  "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )"  (589 pages; 3.65 MB) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/&nbsp . ; Much discussion of Community Visioning Initiatives (and other supporting parts of such a collaborative problem solving and citizen peacebuilding process) in Sedtion VII.  A Constellation of Initiatives Approach to Collaborative Problem Solving and Citizen Peacebuilding of the "Invitation Package" document.]

 

Stefan Pasti

Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainbility (CPCS) Initiative

www.cpcsc.info 

 

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Gaia Education Design for Sustainability - Incorporating Transition Towns Training

Gaia Education Design for Sustainability - Incorporating Transition Towns Training | Community Peacebuilding | Scoop.it
Gaia Education Design for Sustainability - Incorporating Transition Towns Training
Stefan Pasti's insight:

“Gaia Education Design for Sustainability Incorporating Transition Towns Training

5 October - 8 November 2013

 

[The following notes are from the above webpage]

 

“Presented by the Findhorn Foundation College in partnership with the Findhorn Foundation, Global Ecovillage Network and Gaia Education

 

“Based on the Ecovillage Design Curriculum - an official contribution to the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development

 

 

“You are invited to join this five-week comprehensive training based on the four core pillars of the Ecovillage Design Curriculum: the social, worldview, ecological and economic dimensions of sustainability.

 

“The Gaia Education curriculum draws on the experience and expertise developed in a network of some of the most successful ecovillages and community projects across the Earth.

 

“Design for Sustainability Training is an advanced training course based at the Findhorn Ecovillage providing a practical forum for learning and developing skills needed to work effectively with design for sustainability at all levels. The fifth week of the programme offers practice in facilitation skills, for personal growth, spiritual enrichment and sustainable social action.

 

“Facilitated by 

May East -  Chief Executive, Gaia Education
Jonathan Dawson - Head of Economics, Schumacher College 
Michael Shaw - Director, Ecovillage International
Pracha Hutanuwatr - Director, Right Livelihood Foundation, Thailand
Jane Rasbash - Director, Gaia Education
Daniel Wahl - Research & Innovation, International Futures Forum
and Findhorn Ecovillage experts

 
 

“Social Design - Week 1: Oct 5 - Oct 11

 

Topics include

 

Building Community & Embracing Diversity

Communication Skills and Feedback

Facilitation and Decision-Making Processes

Conflict Facilitation

Personal Empowerment and Leadership

Celebrating Life: Creativity and Art

 

 

“Ecological Design - Week 2: Oct 12 - Oct 18

 

Topics include

 

Whole Systems Approach to Ecological Design & Bioregionalism

Water

Organic Agriculture and Local Food

Appropriate Technology: Energy

Green Building

 

 

“Economic Design - Week 3: Oct 19 - Oct 26

 

Topics include

 

Shifting the Global Economy to Sustainability

How Money Works: Community Banks and Currencies

Right Livelihood

Social Enterprise

Legal and Financial Issues

 

 

“Worldview - Week 4: Oct 26 - Nov 1

 

Topics include

 

Holistic Worldview

Listening to and Reconnecting with Nature

Awakening & Transformation of Consciousness

Personal Health, Planetary Health

Socially Engaged Spirituality and Bioregionalism

 

 

“Facilitation Skills and Empowerment - Week 5: Nov 2 - Nov 8

 

Topics include

 

Practice in facilitation skills for personal growth

Spiritual enrichment

Sustainable social action”

 

 

[Note:  New document from the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative:  "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )"  (589 pages; 3.65 MB) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/ ;).  Gaia Education is one of the 29 Organizations featured in Section 

II. (of the "Invitation Package" document)--  Solution Oriented Pathways— A List (with descriptions) of 29 Organizations, Businesses, and Initiatives working towards resolving many of the challenges of our times.]

 

Stefan Pasti

Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative

www.cpcsc.info 

 

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Can We Afford 1000 Community Visioning Initiatives?

Here are some observations on how 1000 Community Visioning Initiatives might be funded…

Stefan Pasti's insight:

The “Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )” (589 pages) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/ ) is an invitation to the 272 people listed in Section III “List of People Being Formally Invited to Join CPCS Initiative Board of Advisors”—and to citizens from every variety of circumstances who might read this—

 

to help create, become involved, contribute to, and participate in

 

a)  one or more of the thousands of Community Visioning Initiatives (or some similar stakeholder engagement/collaborative problem solving process designed to maximize citizen participation) needed to overcome the challenges of our times
 

 

Here are some observations on how 1000 Community Visioning Initiatives might be funded…

 

A rough estimate by this writer for a time-intensive (year or more) Community Visioning Initiative (introduced by Preliminary Surveys, and supported by many Community Teaching and Learning Centers) is  $10 million (10 million in U.S. dollars).

 

Thus, 1000 Community Visioning Initiatives, in communities around the world, would cost $10 billion.

 

Some selected observations on where that $10 billion could come from—

 

1)  $10 billion is only .005% of the $207 trillion in personal wealth held by the richest 10 percent.

 

2)  $10 billion is .07% of the $14 trillion of “stranded carbon assets” on the books of publicly listed companies, private companies, state governments and sovereign wealth funds.

 

3)  $10 billion is only .57% (a little more than half of 1%) of $1,750 billion in military expenditures in 2012.

 

4)  $10 billion is 1.8% of (est.) $557 billion in worldwide advertising spending  in 2012.

 

5)  $10 billion is 2.4% of the $419 billion of worldwide gambling revenues in 2011.

 

6)  $10 billion is 6% of the $162 billion people in the United States spent on beer, wine, and liquor in 2011.

 

7)  If 18% of cable TV subscribers in the United States unsubscribed from cable TV, they could re-direct that money to finance 1000 Community Visioning Initiatives.

 

8)  Companies marketing cigarettes in the United States could use that $10 billion per year to fund the costs of implementing 1000 Community Visioning Initiatives.

 

9)  “Many hands make much work light.”—The result can be that there are countless “ways to earn a living” which contribute to the peacebuilding, community revitalization, and ecological sustainability efforts necessary to overcome the challenges of our times.

 

 

[Note:  New document from the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative:  "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )"  (589 pages; 3.65 MB) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/   The “Invitation Package” document includes the above observations about affording 1000 Community Visioning Initiatives in Section VII.  “A Constellation of Initiatives Approach to Collaborative Problem Solving and Citizen Peacebuilding”  (see “Cost of Community Visioning Initiatives” (p.502)(which also includes the source references for the observations)—and in Appendix 7 “We have the resources to overcome the challenges of our times.” (p.583)]

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CPCS Blog

This "Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability" (CPCS) Initiative Blog will be a key location for updates on outreach being done with the document "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info)" (589 pages;...
Stefan Pasti's insight:

Documents now accessible at the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative website include:

 

“Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )”  (589 p.; 3.65 MB)

 

1 page introduction

5 page introduction

6 page introduction

20 page Introduction

1 page short version Table of Contents

27 page long version Table of Contents

 

All of the above documents are accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/ .

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Al Gore: world is on brink of 'carbon bubble'

Al Gore: world is on brink of 'carbon bubble' | Community Peacebuilding | Scoop.it
Gore and partner David Blood call on companies to 'do their fiduciary duty' and identify carbon risks in their portfolios
Stefan Pasti's insight:

Here are excerpts from this article in the Guardian by Fiona Harvey (October 31, 2013):

 

“The world is on the brink of the ‘largest bubble ever’ in finance, because of the undisclosed value of high-carbon assets on companies' balance sheets, and investment managers who fail to take account of the risks are failing in their fiduciary duty to shareholders and investors, Al Gore and his investment partner, David Blood, have said.

 

"’Stranded carbon assets’ such as coal mines, fossil fuel power stations and petrol-fuelled vehicle plants represent at least $7tn on the books of publicly listed companies, and about twice as much again is owned by private companies, state governments and sovereign wealth funds.

 

“As the danger from climate change intensifies, and as rules on carbon and the introduction of carbon pricing in many parts of the world start to bite, these assets are expected to come under threat, from regulation and from the need to transform the economy on to a low-carbon footing. The ‘carbon bubble’ has been identified by leading thinkers on climate change in recent years, but so far the findings have had little real effect on investor behaviour...."

 

“...Gore told the Guardian: ‘This is potentially the largest bubble ever. If investors look in clear-eyed, traditional risk management way, they can be in time to avoid it.’ He said it was not feasible to wait for a global agreement on climate change, on the lines of the Kyoto protocol which he helped to forge in 1997, but that investors must take action sooner. He urged individual investors to demand that their pension companies or fund managers should seek to evaluate their exposure to carbon risk."

 

 

[Note:  New document from the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative:  "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )"  (589 pages; 3.65 MB) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/ .  This article about a "carbon bubble" is one of a timeline of 28 warnings about Global Warming, from June, 1988 through November, 2013 (see Section IV.  subsection D.  "The Threat of Global Warming—and the urgent need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions".]

 

Stefan Pasti

Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainabiltiy (CPCS) Initiative

www.cpcsc.info 

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Achim Steiner and Susan Burns on Sovereign Environmental Risk - Project Syndicate

Achim Steiner and Susan Burns on Sovereign Environmental Risk - Project Syndicate | Community Peacebuilding | Scoop.it
Many financial observers have begun to question the models upon which credit-rating agencies, investment firms, and others rely to price the risks tied to such securities.
Stefan Pasti's insight:

Here are some excerpts from this article at Project Syndicate (October 27, 2012):

 

“Studies such as the The Millennium Ecosystem Assessment and The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB), conducted on behalf of the G-8, have improved our understanding of the economic, ecological, and social value of the goods and services provided by ecosystems, and have proposed better methods for pricing them. Yet this new thinking has yet to influence significantly the behavior of bond investors and rating agencies.

 

“Some might assume that bond markets are shielded from the effects of climate change, ecosystem degradation, and water scarcity. With more than $40 trillion of sovereign debt in global markets at any given time, that is a very high-risk game…

 

“…The time has come for a better understanding of the connection between environmental and natural-resource risk and sovereign credit risk. Only then will investors, rating agencies, and governments be able to plan over the medium to long term with the knowledge needed to ensure long-term economic growth and stability.”

 

 

[Note:  New document from the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative:  "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )"  (589 pages; 3.65 MB) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/ .  Insights from this article contribute to the "gestalts" in many of the Sections of the "Invitation Package" document.]

 

Stefan Pasti

Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative

www.cpcsc.info 

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The Transition to More Solution-Oriented Employment—the example of Booker T. Washington

Below are some excerpts from Booker T. Washington's autobiography "Up from Slavery", which were included in the subsection "Re-considering the Urbanization Trend" in the document "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpscs.info )....

Stefan Pasti's insight:

In this section on “Re-considering the Urbanization Trend”, it is most appropriate to reference the inspirational work of Booker T. Washington (especially during the years 1881-1915).

 

For those readers who do not know of Booker T. Washington, he was born into slavery, but by a remarkable struggle to gain the benefits of an education, he achieved such success at the Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute (Hampton, Virginia), and in his post graduate work, that he was recommended by its founder and president (former Union General Samuel C. Armstrong) to

be the founder of an educational institution in Tuskegee, Alabama (in 1881).

 

(Note: This writer believes that the industrial education model followed at the beginnings of Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute, can be “reconfigured” to apply to ecovillage and sustainable community development—and that there are already many well developed model projects along these lines.) 

 

 

Here are some of excerpts from Booker T. Washington’s autobiography “Up From Slavery” (first

published in 1901). Excerpts below are from an accessible for free online version of “Up From Slavery”

(location of Table of Contents at http://xroads.virginia.edu/~HYPER/WASHINGTON/toc.html  )

 

 

 (From paragraphs 1 and 4 in the Chapter 10 “A Harder Task Than Making Bricks Without Straw”)

 

“From the very beginning, at Tuskegee, I was determined to have the students do not only the agricultural and domestic work, but to have them erect their own buildings. My plan was to have them, while performing this service, taught the latest and best methods of labour, so that the school would not only get the benefit of their efforts, but the students themselves would be taught to see not only utility in labour, but beauty and dignity; would be taught, in fact, how to lift labour up from mere drudgery and toil, and would learn to love work for its own sake. My plan was not to teach them to work in the old way, but to show them how to make the forces of nature-air, water, steam, electric, horsepower—assist them in their labor.

 

“During the now nineteen years' existence of the Tuskegee school, the plan of having the buildings erected by student labour has been adhered to. In this time forty buildings, counting small and large, have been built, and all except four are almost wholly the product of student labour.  As an additional result, hundreds of men are now scattered throughout the South who received their knowledge of mechanics while being taught how to erect these buildings.  Skill and knowledge are now handed down from one set of students to another in this way, until at the present time a building of any description or size can be constructed wholly by our instructors and students, from the drawing of the plans to the putting in of the electric fixtures, without going off the grounds for a single workman.”

 

 

Here also, it will be most appropriate to provide some inspiration relating to the key role which can be played by philanthropy, in both creating education systems, and in the “just transition” to more

solution-oriented employment: (Note: Specifically, this writer believes that if there was anything resembling the kind of philanthropy described below directed to the support of Community Visioning

Initiatives, there could be much momentum generated towards resolving the challenges of our times.)

 

Again, the work of Booker T. Washington (and of the philanthropists who recognized the value of the work he was doing) is most inspirational:

 

[From the Wikipedia webpage for “Booker T. Washington”  at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Booker_T._Washington ; (note:  current text at the Wikipedia webpage has apparently been revised, and is in some ways different from this version)]

 

 “Washington's philosophy and tireless work on education issues helped him enlist both the moral and substantial financial support of many major white philanthropists.  He became friends with such self-made men as Standard Oil magnate Henry Huttleston Rogers; Sears, Roebuck and Company President Julius Rosenwald; and George Eastman, inventor and founder of Kodak.  These individuals and many other wealthy men and women funded his causes, such as supporting Hampton and Tuskegee institutes. Each school was originally founded to produce teachers.  However, graduates had often gone back to their local communities only to find precious few schools and educational resources to work with in the largely impoverished South.

 

“In 1912, Rosenwald provided funds for a pilot program involving six new small schools in rural Alabama, which were designed, constructed and opened in 1913 and 1914 and overseen by Tuskegee; the model proved successful.  Rosenwald (then) established The Rosenwald Fund.  The school building program was one of its largest programs.  Using state-of-the-art architectural plans initially drawn by professors at Tuskegee Institute, the Rosenwald Fund spent over four million dollars to help build 4,977 schools, 217 teachers' homes, and 163 shop buildings in 883 counties in 15 states, from Maryland to Texas.  The Rosenwald Fund used a system of matching grants, and black communities raised more than $4.7 million to aid the construction.  These schools became known as Rosenwald Schools.  The local schools were a source of much community pride and were of priceless value to African-American families when poverty and segregation limited their children's chances.  By 1932, the facilities could accommodate one third of all African American children in Southern U.S. schools.”

 

 

[Note:  New document from the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative:  "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )"  (589 pages; 3.65 MB) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/ ; Notes about three people in particular--Mahatma Gandhi, J.C. Kumarappa, and Booker T. Washington--are included in the "Invitation Package" document, as this writer believes they each have contributed immeasurable inspiration to the thinking and practical applications essential to Community Peacebuilding.]

 

Stefan Pasti

Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative

www.cpcsc.info

 

 

 

 

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Maximizing Employment During The Unprecedented Transition Ahead

Many hands make much work light.

Stefan Pasti's insight:

[Note:  The following is excerpted from the “Long Version Table of Contents” (27 pages) for the “Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )”.  There are more details provided in the complete “Invitation Package” document (see p. 480-489)]

 
 

E.  Maximizing Employment—Job Fairs, Employment Listings at CTLCs, Local Currency   (p.480)

 

Selected Entries

 

1)  Surely, there will be work to do….   (p. 480)

 

2)  Preliminary surveys in preparation for Community Visioning Initiatives, the actual implementation of Community Visioning Initiatives, and affordable and accessible education in support of Community Visioning Initiatives (at “Community Teaching and Learning Centers”) can result in apprenticeships, internships, volunteer opportunities, and training in key fields of activity—all of which would minimize “transformation unemployment”.   (p. 481)

 

3)  Summary Presentations and Job Fairs—Step 12 from the document “A 15 Step Outline for a Community Visioning Initiative” (also in Appendix 1)   (p.481)

The job fairs which come at the end of the CVI process provide opportunities for all key stakeholders in the community (businesses, organizations, institutions, government, etc.) to demonstrate their upgraded awareness—and their interest in the welfare of the community—by offering and facilitating new employment opportunities… and thus helping with a just transition from patterns of investment which in only limited ways represent solutions to prioritized challenges to patterns of investment which in many ways represent solutions to prioritized challenges.

 

 

 

One possible element of this just transition can be that people who do deliberately focus their investments of time, energy, and money towards solutions identified by the Community Visioning Initiative being carried out in their community may receive, as encouragement, local currency.  And then such local currency can, in its turn, be redeemed in ways which will be particularly helpful to people transitioning from less solution-oriented employment to more solution-oriented employment.

 

4)  The “1000 Community Visioning Initiative” Proposal—helping people to deliberately channel their time, energy, and money into the creation of “ways of earning a living” which are directly related to resolving high priority challenges

 

6)  Maximum citizen participation in identifying challenges and solution-oriented activity would generate investment, create training, and result in higher levels of employment—a virtuous cycle—and close the gaps on the challenges—solutions—training—employment sequence.   (p. 483)

 

7)  Responses (from the 150 key leaders surveyed before the visioning process begins—and by way of ongoing questionnaires, from residents) which will build consensus for action plans, and raise employment outlooks in specific fields of activity associated with those action plans.   (p. 484)

 

8)  Many people can realize the wisdom of deliberately focusing the way they spend their time, energy, and money.  The result can be a deliberate increase in the “ways of earning a living” which are directly related to overcoming the challenges identified by residents as priority challenges.  As the ancient Chinese proverb says: “Many hands make much work light.”   (p.486)

 

9)  One of the most persistent ironies in life is that with so many opportunities to provide real assistance to fellow human beings, there are still many, many people in this world who cannot find a “way to earn a living” providing such assistance… there is the potential—and the need—to overcome such ironies.    (p. 487)

11)  “Creating millions of new green jobs through targeted investment and spending is one thing; filling those jobs with qualified candidates is quite another thing.  This transition will require a massive job training (and retraining) effort on the part of business, government, and education if it is to scale up quickly.    (p. 488)

 

13)  The sharing of Community Visioning Initiative experiences and Community Teaching and Learning Center experiences through the clearinghouse websites would be a key (if we will use it) to making the most of learning experiences worldwide…

 

 

[Note:  New document from the Community Peacebuilding and Cultural Sustainability (CPCS) Initiative:  "Invitation Package for Possible Board of Advisors (at www.cpcsc.info )"  (589 pages; 3.65 MB) (accessible at http://cpcsc.info/invitation-package/ .  The CPCS Initiative in general, and the "Invitation Package" document in many ways (see Section VII.  p. 432-509), advocate for a combination of preliminary surveys to 150 local leaders (as preparation for Community Visioning Initiatives), time-intensive Community Visioning Initiatives supported by many “Community Teaching and Learning Centers” (offering workshops suggested by the preliminary surveys), and “sister community” relationships as a starting point for accelerating solution-oriented activity, and creating more “close-knit” communities…communities with a healthy appreciation for each others strengths, communities with a well-developed capacity to resolve even the most difficult challenges—and communities which demonstrate a high level of compassion for their fellow human beings.]

 

 

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