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Saturday, June 9, 2012

Templates for an Inter-Group Communication/Synergy Structure

Templates for an Inter-Group Communication/Synergy Structure

Rev. Alia Aurami, Ph.D.

Head Minister, “Amplifying Divine Light in All” Church

Here are a couple of potential structures for world-wide inter-group communication and synergy among Integrally-interested people, which would serve the "meta-group" function so many of us long for. These have not been published before. These are just offered FWIW. I hope some folks will be inspired to put these ideas, or something sparked by these ideas, into existence.

The second one is what we might call a hub, or node, or network node, or nexus, or umbrella organization, or meta-group. The first is simply a call for increased cross-membership.

First and simplest format, have a "committee" within your local or online Integral Group and each member of the committee joins the online group for some other Integrally-oriented group around the world. They monitor, contribute, and report back to the committee ideas for synergy, and the committee reports to your entire group. The particulars of any proposed interface or interaction between your group and any other group get worked out case by case.

The second idea is a much grander scale with possibilities beyond what we can imagine. Ideally, BOTH strategies/structures would be implemented. They are different enough that the two strategies in themselves will be synergistic! And I believe it would be optimal that different people from each Integrally-oriented group should be involved in the two strategies, not the same persons in each.

Find a networking/forum-type online platform such as Ning, and the simplest Ning network would probably be suitable (and the only free kind on Ning.) For this purpose it might even qualify for one of the "grants" making networks free.

Each Integrally-oriented group around the world would be invited (or invite itself) to name THREE representatives to join the network, and those people would just report in ongoingly what's happening in their whole group and report out to their whole group about what's happening in the network and in the other groups.

Why three? First for diversity of viewpoints, and second because not all will be equally active, so with three there is a chance of a meaningful level of active participation by a group in the network.

So it's kinda like an ongoing "conference" with 3 reps from each group around the world. The possibilities are exciting!

There would be no set "agenda" within the network except

  • to keep the others in the meta-group up to date on what's happening in the home group, and
  • to communicate among as many as possible in the meta-group and
  • to LOOK FOR ways to collaborate, cooperate, share lessons learned, divide up labor, share resources, synergize.

There would not be a lot of work involved in hosting or managing such a network, and that job could be rotated among people or groups. A policy and procedures manual could be set up, or a Guidelines, or some managerial document which would constitute the governance, which would then be independent of personalities. So the initial members could make this their first order of business, and a little test case for cooperation!!!!

So this would not even be a gathering hosted by any particular country or group at all. It would be wonderfully de-centralized. (Even though one group could set it up and issue the first  invitations.) So there would be 3 reps from Seattle Integral, 3 from the London Circle, 3 from the New York circle, 3 from the Swiss Integral Party, 3 from each of various groups in Germany, 3 from Boulder Integral, 3 from Integral Leadership Collaborative, etc. etc. And if there is no "group" at all in a country, or city, or state, then 3 individuals from that country could be present.

Why limit to three? Might get too big for optimal monitoring by anyone who is managing or participating.

As I implied above, countries would not be the "groups." There could be a lot more than one group per country. This makes the whole endeavor not political, not "nation"-oriented but grassroots-oriented, especially if there are individuals in some countries with very few Integrally-oriented people

The groups themselves would select their own representatives and make sure there are always 3. Whoever is hosting the network just issues invitations to groups or individuals, and encourages folks to spread the word to others who can then "apply" for membership. I see this as a private network, but at least private enough that only the members can POST. Otherwise it is not a meaningful "holon;" it would get too diluted and be just like other forums which have a global base.

I don't see it limited to political concerns, though it might start out with that focus. And there would be plenty of room for diversity and disagreements. This would not be an idea-oriented forum but an action-oriented forum. People with ideas in disagreement could find ways to synergize their actions in the world, nonetheless. Or simply ignore one another and do their own thing.
There would undoubtedly be various kinds of sub-groups formed within such a meta-group, based on a variety of variables such as country, interests, approaches, etc.

Further clarification: The way I am seeing it, the 3 reps from each group would NOT necessarily form a social holon. They might not be a committee and they might not report back to their group, nor interface with the network, as a mini-group.They could each operate as themselves, bringing their own unique perspectives to both the network and their group. Mais oui they would interact, but the structure would not ask them to ever "speak as one voice" unless they all happened to agree on something. The diversity of threeness is one of the prime strengths of the entire system being proposed here.

Oh, and a name, I propose Global Integral Nexus, but that might be too general or grandiose. Or Global Integral Synergy Nexus, which has more ‘action’ connotations.

If the global structure is something like a Ning network, then going by the lessons learned at my online community, I suggest the network be set up by a Founding TEAM, so that they can then dissolve or become Management Team members who can change and the entity will be ongoing.

The best way to do that is for someone on the Founding Team to set up a gmail account and share the username and password with the first Team folks. Then the gmail account can be the "entity" (with an appropriate name like xxxxx Team) which sets up the network which has its own name, like Global Integral Nexus. I suspect that would work in network hosting platforms other than Ning, as well as at Ning. Then the Network Creator entity log-in name and password can be shared with the individuals who form the first Managing Team.

That is structure is working splendidly at one place I know, and saves all kinds of future potential hassles, and facilitates work greatly. One important caveat: everything anyone does in the name of the Team must carry their own name as "for the Team." Like "John Jones for the Team" or "Sally Smith for the Team." Otherwise people get really spooked.

I should also mention that as far as I can anticipate, there would be very little “management” needed for such an organization. Mostly just enforcing guidelines and if necessary, raising funds for rental in cyberspace. Groups would be as active as they wished, or not. The organization as a whole would not need to reach very many significant  agreements or take very many significant actions. And no newsletter, no birthday celebrations, heh heh.

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