we had a very rich and inspiring meeting this weekend in Dresden. Thank you for your being here, or contributing in a Skype Conference Call or by sending in thought papers.
The title of the meeting will be something like this (there might be some fine-tuning until we get to the invitation ...): »Dialogue and Leadership – The New Face of Community«
Depending on the space we are going to find, we hope to be around 40 to 50 people including the hosting team. We came to call this group a circle of friends. The meeting should take place in October somewhere in Europe. Please be patient for the details.
We outlined the intention of the European meeting, we discussed desired results and how to create them, we explored the budget to make it happen, we described leadership roles before, during and after the meeting, we developed a scaffolding of how the structure of the meeting should look like, we discussed next steps in the planning process and how to include a larger group of people – in short we have been highly creative and productive. I am going to prepare a summary report of our meeting so that you can understand where we got and how we got there.
With a circle of friends, we want to explore the new face of community. What does it take to create a community? What is the role of shared meaning for a community? And, before all, why should we care for community? What will be the roles of dialogue and leadership in this process?
We do not want to answer these questions for a community, or create shared meaning for a community. What we want is to explore and learn how we can co-create with groups a »cradle for culture«, an environment where a group of people can explore what makes them a community and how this culture can become alive. One of the deeper questions that emerged for us in our conversation is: »How can we steward life?«
We still are searching for who »we« is? Who is inviting to this European meeting? Is it a group of individuals? Is it a group of individuals and a partner organisation (the WCCF)? We have discussed how we best can invite the World Café Community Foundation to join in the »we«, but due to the legacy of World Café Europe, this question is a sensitive one, and the discussion is still ongoing and the invitation to be crafted.
While we still are working on this question of collective identity: Might this question be another important, and far from trivial aspect for any community – clarifying for everyone: Who is included in the »we«? Who is part of »our« living system / social organism / organisation / society / humanity / ... ?
One aspect of dialogic leadership (this word has no shared meaning yet, but it sounds good), as I see it, is transparency. That is why we created this blog. That is why I am contributing to this blog and to the effort to make this meeting happen. I hope that we are creating a huge resonance, and contribute to (re-) vitalising a true community of World Café and dialogue practitioners in Europe.