von Meibom, Barbara

Alles Leben ist Bewegung und ein ständiges Ringen, um das rechte Gleichgewicht, um lebensfördernde Balancen und um Synthesen zwischen vermeintlich unvereinbaren Widersprüchen. Dabei haben wir ein feines Gespür dafür, wenn etwas „aus der Spur geraten“ ist und destruktive Entwicklungen für uns selbst, für das Miteinander und für das Leben auf diesem Planeten entstanden sind.

Ich habe in meinem Leben erfahren müssen, was es heißt, sich der Welt zu sehr kognitiv zu nähern. Als Universitätsprofessorin, Politik- und Kommunikationswissenschaftlerin hatte ich gelernt, meine mentalen Fähigkeiten mit aller Kraft in den Dienst der Wissenschaft zu stellen.

Doch ich musste erfahren, dass damit mein Leben in ein destruktives Ungleichgewicht rutschte, und nicht nur dies:  Auch mein Menschen- und Weltbild wurden durch die mentale Perspektive verengt.

Ich begab mich also auf die Suche nach einem neuen inneren und äußeren Gleichgewicht, einem Gleichgewicht, das dem Leben dient.

Dazu entwickelte ich ein zweites Standbein, erschloss mir die Welten der transpersonalen und humanistischen Psychologie und Psychotherapie, vertiefte meinen Zugang zur spirituellen Dimension des Seins durch ausgedehnte Studienreisen nach Asien und erprobte mich seit Mitte der 90er Jahre, zuerst neben der universitären Tätigkeit und dann selbständig mit CommUnio.

Mit diesem reichen Hintergrund, in dem sich Unterschiedliches vereint, bin ich bis heute unterwegs und mit mir die vielen Menschen und Organisationen, die ich im Laufe meiner 20jährigen selbständigen Tätigkeit begleite und begleitet habe. Geholfen hat mir dabei, dass an meiner Wiege „Thron und Altar“ standen, repräsentiert durch zwei übermächtige Großväter, die so unterschiedliche Welten wie Macht und Liebe vertraten und eine Mutter, die sich mit hohem Engagement in den Dienst von Verständigung stellte.

Zugänge, die ich im Laufe meiner langen beruflichen Tätigkeit gewählt habe, sind vielfältig: Einzelarbeit, Lehrgänge, Moderationen, Mediationen, Vorträge, Publikationen. Doch immer geht es mir darum, gemeinsam Wege zu ebnen, in denen sich Stimmigkeit im Innen wie im Außen herstellt, eine Stimmigkeit, die sich aus der produktiven Synthese unterschiedlichster Sichtweisen, Interessen, Anliegen und Weltzugänge herstellt.

taken from https://www.communio-fuehrungskunst.de/ueber-uns

 

Herrmann, Lukas

Lukas investigates the cultivation of generative social fields through long-term whole-school co-creation processes based on a training program in 3 elementary schools with over 1,000 school kids in Berlin, Germany. The training program addresses in particular the schools’ 180 teachers by developing their mindfulness, empathy, and relational competence. Furthermore, Lukas works with Peter Senge and Mette Böll from the center for systems awareness to foster systems change within the education sector in California.

Specking, Heiko

specking+partners advises on sustainability issues, and engages with corporations, charitable structures, wealthy individuals and their families. In this respect we support the enhancement of responsible behaviour both for business related and personal activities. As an independent Swiss-based company, we ensure that value-based practices can become part of the DNA of a project or an organization.

Together with our clients, we build long-term, holistic strategies for responsible engagement, philanthropic activities, sustainable investment and social entrepreneurship. We then work to support implementation of their strategies and to realize the desired impact.

Lanying, Zhang

Lanying is currently the Executive Deputy Dean, Institute of Rural Reconstruction of China in Southwest University at Chongqing. Here she has developed and implemented projects, training/workshops and study programs in the area of sustainable agriculture, environmental education, health education and participatory development approach for poverty reduction. Her own field of interests includes participation for better governance, rural education for individual development and collectivism as well as sustainable development for the poor and marginalized people to be out of poverty and inequality.

CommUnio – Institut für Führungskunst

CommUnio wird geleitet von Prof. Dr. Barbara v. Meibom und geht –  je nach Aufgabenstellung – Kooperationen mit Menschen und Institutionen ein, mit denen wir eine gemeinsame Vision teilen. Wir sind dankbar für ein Netzwerk mit jahrelang gewachsenen Vertrauensbeziehungen.

Im Zentrum unserer Arbeit steht die Entwicklung von Führungskunst, die dem Leben dient, von einer wertschätzenden Führungskultur und von Führungspersönlichkeiten, die fähig sind, die Potenziale von sich und anderen zu entfalten.

(Taken from: https://www.communio-fuehrungskunst.de/ueber-uns)

________________________

CommUnio is led by Prof. Dr. Barbara v. Meibom and – depending on the task – enters into cooperations with people and institutions with whom we share a common vision. We are grateful for a network with relationships of trust that have grown over many years.

At the heart of our work is the development of leadership that serves life, of an appreciative leadership culture and of leaders who are capable of developing the potential of themselves and others.

(Translation from English into German, originally taken from: https://www.communio-fuehrungskunst.de/ueber-uns)

 

 

Inner change and sustainability initiatives: exploring the narratives from eco-villagers through a place-based transformative learning approach

Abstract

In an earlier work, we suggested that connection, compassion and creativity could be used as key analytical dimensions of transformative place-based learning (Pisters et al. in Emot Sp Soc 34(8):100578, 2019). This analytical framework was cre- ated to study processes of place-based transformative learning which evoke shifts in our consciousness. This inner change might well be critical in the development of regenerative practices and places. This article aims to critically investigate the framework empirically using life-story interviews with people living in three different ecovillages. Ecovillages are so-called intentional communities which aim to develop sustainable, regenerative ways of living. Methodologically, the research is grounded in an ethnography and narrative inquiry. Following the empirical results, we will reflect on the merits and short- comings of the analytical framework. The article concludes that the framework proved useful for its purpose if it includes a fourth dimension of ’transgression’ and portraits the dimensions as continua.

(Taken from https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11625-019-00775-9)

Connecting to Change the World: Harnessing the Power of Networks for Social Impact

Something new and important is afoot. Nonprofit and philanthropic organizations are under increasing pressure to do more and to do better to increase and improve productivity with fewer resources. Social entrepreneurs, community-minded leaders, nonprofit organizations, and philanthropists now recognize that to achieve greater impact they must adopt a network-centric approach to solving difficult problems. Building networks of like-minded organizations and people offers them a way to weave together and create strong alliances that get better leverage, performance, and results than any single organization is able to do.

While the advantages of such networks are clear, there are few resources that offer easily understandable, field-tested information on how to form and manage social-impact networks. Drawn from the authors’ deep experience with more than thirty successful network projects, Connecting to Change the World provides the frameworks, practical advice, case studies, and expert knowledge needed to build better performing networks. Readers will gain greater confidence and ability to anticipate challenges and opportunities.

Easily understandable and full of actionable advice, Connecting to Change the World is an informative guide to creating collaborative solutions to tackle the most difficult challenges society faces.

 

(taken from https://islandpress.org/books/connecting-change-world)

Die harte Landung der Achtsamkeit in der westlichen Konsumkultur

Das aus dem Buddhismus stammende Konzept der Achtsamkeit bettet sich nach und nach in die verschiedenen Lebensbereiche der westlichen Kultur ein. Was bedeutet dieser Kontextwechsel in einer von Konsum geprägten Gesellschaft? Welche Potenziale der Meditation an sich und des “mindfulness-movements” im Allgemeinen lassen sich hinsichtlich einer ökologisch-nachhaltigen Zukunft festmachen? Und vor allem: welche Gefahren birgt dieser Prozess? In der Bachelorarbeit “Die harte Landung der Achtsamkeit in der westlichen Konsumkultur” werden die Wechselwirkungen, welche zwischen den westlichen Adaptionen der Achtsamkeit und den Entwicklungen der Konsumgesellschaft bestehen, analysiert und kritisch beleuchtet. Die Verfasserin nimmt dabei abwechselnd eine anthropologische, philosophische und soziologische Betrachtungsweise ein.

Awaris

We transform mindsets, build capabilities and help give birth to new ways of seeing, working and organising.

We embody a deep grounding in systems thinking, mindfulness, neuroscience, and leadership development with a touch of courage thrown in.

We believe that resilience, awareness, and collective intelligence play a central role in transformations and the future of organisations.

Evolutionary Leaders

EL Circle Purpose Statement:

Our purpose is to collectively inspire, support and serve conscious evolution.

EL Circle Mission Statement:

United by a shared commitment to strategically engage our collective field of potential, we serve our purpose by providing opportunities for synergistic engagement among evolutionary leaders who are forging a movement for the conscious evolution of humanity.

The Evolutionary Leaders Circle gathers annually in retreat to come into communal relationship with one another, deepening our collective consciousness and strengthening our mutual intention, thus setting the foundation for the emergence of the next steps of our evolutionary journey.

The retreat balances silence, relaxation, collaborative inquiry, and sharing amongst peers, inspiring and fostering new pathways of consciousness, capacity, collaboration, and community among us.

Together we explore ideas, perspectives and modalities that support an evolutionary worldview, pushing the edge of our collective thinking, knowing, and evolution. We seek to make insights that emerge from our exploration accessible to the public through diverse media, educational, and other relevant platforms.

Our engagement with one another inspires cooperative partnerships within the EL Circle and also enhances and amplifies the work we are already doing in our various fields of endeavor.

The EL Circle strives to inspire and support evolutionary leadership and visionary action throughout the world by giving voice to conscious, transformational and evolutionary ideas that meet the challenges of our time.

EL How We Engage Statement

We are a network of people who feel deep caring and a sense of urgency about the state of our world, and who each dedicate our lives and work to expressing a passionate commitment to both the inner work of human transformation and the outer work of social transformation.

We come together to catalyze and contribute to the evolution of one another and everyone whose lives we touch, and to magnify our ability to be of benefit. We aspire to pioneer the processes by which evolutionaries themselves continually evolve holistically, personally and in our service to all life.

We are committed to mentoring, coaching, inspiring and loving one another dynamically. Our convergence helps us, individually and collectively, to become more and more authentic, aligned, humble, cooperative, courageous, vulnerable, co-creative, innovative, and effective. Our engagement with one another inspires synergistic collaborations in self-organizing partnerships, in service to the emergence of a movement for the conscious evolution of humanity.

One Resilient Earth

Humanity is not prepared to live in a climate altered world. And no policy, plan or initiative happening today to reduce or respond to climate change matches the scale of this global existential threat.

For our team, the climate emergency is both the result and the accelerator of a deeper ecological crisis, which stems from a vision of the Earth as resources to tap. We need to transform that vision and all resulting practices now to limit, address and cope with the crisis. We propose to move away from exhausting ourselves, others and nature for some temporary relief or pleasure, and start protecting and regenerating all the ecosystems we host and belong to. Only then can we ensure that humanity cuts down greehouse gas emissions and becomes more resilient to unavoidable climate instability. We do not have much time to limit the damage that is underway. And even if we had more time, the team has not found a more fulfilling nor joyful work than fostering resilience and regeneration.

 

What do we do?

We believe that a change has to happen within individuals’ minds, in how they relate to living beings, time, and space, to foster the transformation needed to respond to the current crisis. We also believe that individuals are resilient, in the sense that they can recover from hurt and limiting beliefs, and have the ability to adjust to change easily. Last, we believe in creativity and daring actions to transform the way humanity thinks and acts, and give rise to regenerative and climate-positive initiatives.

We co-design projects with a variety of partners who are open to experiencing and growing their inner resilience as they engage into the regeneration of communities and/or ecosystems through context-specific initiatives. We mobilize ancient wisdom and modern science, work across disciplines and generations, integrate new technologies when impactful, and value art as a channel for transformation. Our three main areas of work foster inspiration, global connection, and responsible experimentation, through Tero magazine, the Tapestry programme for local communities, and our Resilience Nests.

Dunetz, David

The Heschel Center for Sustainability develops and implements the vision of sustainability: a just and cohesive society, a robust and democratic economy, and a healthy and productive environment to all of its residents. The center bridges theoretical knowledge and practical methods, and creatively spreads the message of sustainability, assisting change makers from every sector of society to promote significant change in Israel.

Stiftung Freie Gemeinschaftsbank

Die Freie Gemeinschaftsbank Genossenschaft setzt sich zum Ziel, Menschen zu begleiten, die sich in den Dienst von Mensch und Umwelt stellen. Wir fördern einen bewussten und verantwortungsvollen Umgang mit Geld und engagieren uns dafür, Geldprozesse zu durchschauen.

 

Gestützt auf die Erkenntnisse der Anthroposophie, arbeiten wir mit Menschen und Institutionen zusammen, die sich für Mensch, Tier, Pflanze und Erde einsetzen.

Geld ist weder Ware noch Spekulationsobjekt.
Zentrale Aufgabe der Freien Gemeinschaftsbank ist es, zwischen Menschen zu vermitteln, die Geld zur Verfügung stellen können, und Menschen, die Gelder für das Erreichen ihrer Ziele benötigen. Die Freie Gemeinschaftsbank fördert verantwortungsvolle und zukunftsgerichtete gemeinnützige Initiativen. Geld soll dabei der Entwicklung des Menschen dienen.

Geld ermöglicht sozial, ökologisch und ethisch verantwortbares Wirtschaften.
Die Freie Gemeinschaftsbank fördert Projekte, die Mensch, Tier und Umwelt zugute kommen. Sie versteht sich als gemeinnützige, nicht gewinnorientierte Bank. An profitmaximierenden Unternehmen ist sie nicht interessiert.

Geld arbeitet nicht, es sind immer Menschen, die ihren Zins erwirtschaften.
Den Zinssatz bei ihren Spargeldern können die Anleger bei der Freien Gemeinschaftsbank bis zu einem bestimmen Maximalzinssatz selber bestimmen. Jedes Jahr verzichten viele Bankkunden auf jegliche Guthaben-Verzinsung und ermöglichen damit günstige Kreditkonditionen für Kreditnehmende. Diese richten sich – so weit möglich – nach der wirtschaftlichen Situation des Kreditnehmers.

Geld wird nach Möglichkeit so eingesetzt, wie es der Anleger wünscht.
Anleger der Freien Gemeinschaftsbank haben die Möglichkeit zu wählen, in welchem Kreditbereich sie ihr Geld einsetzen möchten. Die Einleger wissen, wofür ihr Geld eingesetzt wird.

Geld ist mit Transparenz nicht unvereinbar.
Grosse Bedeutung misst die Freie Gemeinschaftsbank dem transparenten und solidarischen Umgang gegenüber all ihren Anspruchsgruppen bei. Sie veröffentlicht beispielsweise in ihrem Jahresbericht sämtliche Kreditnehmende.

Geld besitzt verschiedene Qualitäten.
Die Freie Gemeinschaftsbank fördert das Bewusstsein für die verschiedenen Geldqualitäten “Kaufen”, “Leihen”, und “Schenken”.

Ki Culture

Cultural organizations are uniquely positioned to become leaders for a sustainable future by decreasing their impact on the environment and increasing their impact on their communities.

Ki Culture is the only non-profit organization in the world dedicated to making this a reality. We provide solutions for cultural institutions and tools to educate the public on all issues connected with sustainability.

We help achieve the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) through tangible actions, effective communication, and education. Our original programs make sustainability easy to implement, while our resource centers make it accessible. We develop and support exhibitions and outreach programs that inform and empower people with solutions.

Ki Culture promotes sustainability through culture, holistically and globally.

Southwick, Caitlin

Caitlin Southwick is the Founder and Executive Director of Ki Culture. She holds a Professional Doctorate in Conservation and Restoration of Cultural Heritage from the University of Amsterdam. Caitlin has worked in the conservation field and in museums around the world, including the Vatican Museums, The Getty Conservation Institute, and Easter Island. She was a professional member of the American Institute of Conservations Sustainability Committee and is the Secretary of the Working Group on Sustainability for the International Council of Museums (ICOM).

Voggenreiter, Valerie

Sustainability – Self – Silence
Silence Spaces is a collective of four people, which resulted out of sustainable higher education at the Eberswalde University for sustainable development. During the M.Sc. program we realised, that the inner dimension is under represented when sustainability efforts come into action. Hence, we created a space for the self to empower sustainable behavior in silence and finally helping to transform mindsets and societies. Silence Spaces are physical as well as symbolic spaces. They are free of cyber activities, talking, reading, writing or any kind of input as long as there is not a a conceptualized learning journey taking place. In Silence we learn how to drop into ourselves, observe, reflect, relax – deep learning can take place and this environment can help us to deal more sustainable with ourselves instead of exploiting our own resources. Finally, Silence Spaces want to empower each single individual to invite inner change in order to initiate and shape sustainable outer change – and Silence is the container where this processes can origin from. Silence allows to LISTEN to our inner needs, become more empathic and caring towards oneself as well as the surroundings.

Silence Space

What is sustainability? Often, environmental aspects are in the foreground, while the social dimension is neglected. A transformation towards a more sustainable society, though, needs to consider the social and individual dimension as inner change causes outer change – and vice versa. We see the inner dimension underrepresented in public spheres.
We raise the awareness, that we need more than a technological understanding of sustainability, which cares primarily about the ecological consequences of our actions. We call for a shift in consciousness, too, which influences our thinking and action.
To think critically and acting according to it, is asked from each one of us. We believe that these capacities can be found in Silence. It offers a container for subjective transformation processes – by pausing consciously and taking part at learning journeys on (self)transformation. Deep inner change towards sustainability can’t happen in times of overwhelming stress and acceleration.
Silence Spaces in public places allow a transformation on both levels with the emphasis on internal spaces. The potential to become a part of the solution of grievances lies in every one of us and is able to unfold here. Silence Spaces are physical as well as symbolic spaces. They are free of cyber activities, talking, eating or any kind of input as long as there is not a learning journey taking place. In Silence we can drop into ourselves, observe, relax and reflect. We can gather strength and become observers when we exploit ourselves or witness exploitation of others and the environment. We need an economic and political shift and therefore promote spaces where critical thinking can happen, which is needed to bring along system change. The time for cool headed action is now.

Workface

Workface is a network of currently around 1 million entrepreneurs all across China organized in dezentralized learning communities that meet once a week. We cultivate a practice along the three aspects serve – learn – support.

An Integral Theory of Consciousness

“Abstract: An extensive data search among various types of developmental and evolutionary sequences yielded a `four quadrant’ model of consciousness and its development (the four quadrants being intentional, behavioural, cultural, and social). Each of these dimensions was found to unfold in a sequence of at least a dozen major stages or levels. Combining the four quadrants with the dozen or so major levels in each quadrant yields an integral theory of consciousness that is quite comprehensive in its nature and scope. This model is used to indicate how a general synthesis and integration of twelve of the most influential schools of consciousness studies can be effected, and to highlight some of the most significant areas of future research. The conclusion is that an `all-quadrant, all-level’ approach is the minimum degree of sophistication that we need into order to secure anything resembling a genuinely integral theory of consciousness.”

Ecological Footprint of the Findhorn Foundation and Community

“The study was commissioned by HIE Moray, a Highlands and Islands Local Enterprise Company, to measure the Ecological Footprint of the Findhorn Foundation and Community. The ecological footprint method has been used to determine the extent to which the Findhorn Foundation’s sustainable practices are reducing the Community’s environmental impact.”

Restoration of the tropical dry evergreen forest of peninsular India

“Abstract: The Tropical Dry Evergreen Forest (TDEF) ofIndia is only found on the south eastern seaboard of thepeninsular. It has a very limited range, and extends only 60km inland. The TDEF occurs in an area of high populationdensity and consequently it is the rarest type of forestecosystem found in the subcontinent.The establishment of the Auroville International Township in1968 initiated a major work of eco-restoration which has turneda highly eroded lateritic plateau into a re-emerging ecosystemof the TDEF.The work now spreads out beyond the boundaries of theinternational township and involves working with local people,especially women and children. Many lessons have beenlearnt and the work continues to reintegrate the forest in thesocial fabric of a rapidly changing rural environment.”

(source: Blanchflower, P. (2005). Restoration of the tropical dry evergreen forest of peninsular India. Biodiversity, 6(1), 17-24.)

Sadhana Forest

“Sadhana Forest started its ecological revival and sustainable living work on December 19th 2003.

The vision of its founders, Yorit and Aviram Rozin, is to transform 70 acres of severely eroded, arid land on the outskirts of Auroville. In a spirit of human unity, their aim is to introduce a growing number of people to sustainable living, food security through ecological transformation, wasteland reclamation, and veganism. Our energy and resources are focused on the creation of a vibrant, indigenous Tropical Dry Evergreen Forest (TDEF).

Sadhana Forest won the third place in the Humanitarian Water and Food Award (WAF) 2010. The ceremony took place in the Marble Hall of the University of Copenhagen, Denmark, on November 25th, 2010. Shri Ashok Kumar Attri the Ambassador of India to Denmark honored Sadhana Forest by attending the ceremony.
This award is an international recognition of the quality of the ecological and humanitarian work done by Sadhana Forest in India and Haiti.”

(source: https://sadhanaforest.org/about-us/)

InnSaei – the Power of Intuition

“The ancient Icelandic word for intuition is “innsæi,” but in Iceland it has multiple meanings. It can mean “the sea within” which is the borderless nature of our inner world, a constantly moving world of vision, feelings and imagination beyond words. It can mean “to see within” which means to know yourself, and to know yourself well enough to be able to put yourself in other people’s shoes. And it can mean “to see from the inside out” which is to have a strong inner compass to navigate your way in our ever-changing world.

In the inspiring and thought-provoking InnSæi – the Power of Intuition, Hrund Gunnsteinsdottir and Kristín Ólafsdóttir go on a soul-searching, global journey to uncover the art of connecting within in today’s world of distraction, disconnection and stress. They meet with world-renowned scientists like Marti Spiegelman, an expert in neuroscience and indigenous consciousness who believes that we are only using a fraction of our capacity as human beings, with devastating consequences for the planet; artists like Marina Abramovic, the “grandmother of performance art” who teaches that “in order to create something new human beings need to go into the unknown”; and spiritual leaders like the captivating Malidoma Patrice Somé, a West African elder and author who reasons that “intuition binds us together. Without it we lose our sense of purpose and belonging.”  They also meet an extraordinary group of British schoolchildren who are learning how to better cope in today’s world by unlocking the power of nature and mindfulness.

Illustrated with gorgeous animation and stunning imagery, InnSæi is a film like no other, and one that offers radical insights into how we think and sense the world today.”

Pacific Integral

Pacific Integral is a developer of educational and social change technologies and a global community of leaders and practitioners of transformative change. We aim to support the emergence of a sustainable, equitable and beautiful future for humanity and all of creation. We believe that humanity is in the midst of a profound period of change, and that addressing the opportunities of our time require that we embrace universal human values and ethical action, awaken to and engage in our evolutionary potential, and enact more conscious, integral forms of leadership and collective action in the world, grounded in our deepest wisdom. To this end, we endeavor to impact human development, leadership, and social change at the emergent edge of consciousness and action.

We serve individuals and organizations who see their life and work as an opportunity to make a positive contribution to the future of our world. Our clients are curious and committed. They know they are evolving as people and tend to already have experience in their own development. Our individual clients have a passion for their own growth and for engaging in life deeply and ethically. Our organizational clients tend to have a social purpose or see themselves as serving multiple bottom lines, and have leaders who are interested in working novel and emerging leadership and organizational approaches to foster healthy, transformative work environments.

taken from https://www.pacificintegral.com/about

Evolution at work

Evolution at Work offers over a decade of experience in guiding personal and organizational journeys into self-organization

The shift to self-organization is a transformational and multi-dimensional journey. No two journeys are the same, and this work requires differentiated approaches to learning and development. Everything Evolution at Work offers includes the following three approaches:

Teaching: Presenting a unique combination of theoretical background and practical stories drawn from real-life experience, we help you gain a deep understanding of the Whats, Whys, and Hows of your experience.

Facilitation: Taking a holistic approach to learning, we guide you through exercises that cultivate an embodied confidence with the processes, exercises, and practices that support sustainable self-organization.

Holding Space: We commit to being fully present with what is needed now, without judgment. Love, care, and compassion are at the heart of our work.

taken from https://www.evolutionatwork.org/about


WeAll – Wellbeing Economy Alliance

WEAll is a new global collaboration of organisations, alliances, movements and individuals working together to change the economic system to create a wellbeing economy: one that delivers human and ecological wellbeing. It is registered as a UK Trust, hosted by registered English charity The Equality Trust.

Text from https://wellbeingeconomy.org/how-will-we-change-the-system

Berkana Institute

The Berkana Institute and our partners share the clarity that whatever the problem, community is the answer. We prepare for an unknown future by creating strong & sustainable relationships, by wisely stewarding the earth’s resources and by building resilient communities. We rely on our experience that most human beings are caring, generous and want to be together. We have learned that people can get through anything as long as we’re together. Berkana was founded in 1991 to create communities of support and inquiry for those working to create a future of promise and possibility that benefits all people. We are based in the U.S. and operate as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.

We work from an evolving, coherent theory of change. Since 1991, we have been learning from life (living systems) about how to create systems that are interdependent, adaptive and resilient. Everything we do is a conscious experiment to better understand two of life’s robust capacities: self-organization–life’s process for creating order (effectiveness) without control, and emergence–life’s means for creating system-wide change, taking things to scale. Read Lifecycle of Emergence: Using Emergence to Take Social Innovation to Scale by Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze.

We work at the level of community. The Berkana Institute works in partnership with a rich diversity of people around the world who strengthen their communities by working with the wisdom and wealth already present in their people, traditions and environments. Berkana and our partners share the clarity that whatever the problem, community is the answer. We prepare for an unknown future by creating strong and sustainable relationships, by wisely stewarding the earth’s resources and by building resilient communities. We rely on our experience that most human beings are caring, generous and want to be together. We have learned that human beings can get through anything as long as we’re together.

We focus on four key activities. In many ways, Berkana’s work is quite straightforward. We name trailblazing leaders and communities, connect them to one another, nourish them with relationships, learning, resources, and support, and illuminate their stories as important examples of the future taking place right now

Wisdom Together

We deeply believe that consciousness and ethical leadership are fundamental for global transformation. Conscious leaders have high levels of awareness, and act with compassion to share their knowledge, network and experience with others.They lead from an inner source of wisdom and authentic power, and can be found in any position in our societies.

Keepers of the Water

By integrating art, science and community, we aim to make the natural process of water treatment visible and integrated into daily life and culture.

Global water quality is dependent on each community having a sustainable water source that they know about and are responsible for. Cities all over the planet can be filled with vibrant water and art-filled community centers, parks, schoolyards, businesses and backyards that help people become intimately connected to their water sources. These projects will lead the way for fully sustainable water infrastructures that are visible and integrated into our everyday lives.

We solve problems better with a diversity of minds. Through water, we are interconnected and related to all other living things. Like water, we are one giant family, always seeking to join one another.

Biodynamic Association

Rethinking Agriculture

The Biodynamic Association awakens and enlivens co-creative relationships between humans and the earth, transforming the practice and culture of agriculture to renew the vitality of the earth, the integrity of our food, and the health and wholeness of our communities.

Naropa University

Trained as a Buddhist scholar and educated at Oxford University, Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche wanted to create a place where students could study Eastern and Western religions, writing, psychology, science, and the arts while also receiving contemplative and meditation training.

Stanford Compassionate University Project

We are working to make Stanford a compassionate place. This includes having students, faculty, and staff sign on and reaffirm the Charter for Compassion, and to collaboratively create a Five Year Compassionate Action Plan signed by President Hennessy, VPUE Harry J. Elam, Jr., VPGE Patricia J. Gumport, and the ASSU Undergraduate Senate. 

Center for Compassion And Altruism Research And Education

While science has made great strides in treating pathologies of the human mind, far less research exists to date on positive qualities of the human mind including compassion, altruism and empathy. Yet these prosocial traits are innate to us and lie at the very centerpiece of our common humanity. Our capacity to feel compassion has ensured the survival and thriving of our species over millennia. For this reason, the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (CCARE) at Stanford University School of Medicine was founded in 2008 with the explicit goal of promoting, supporting, and conducting rigorous scientific studies of compassion and altruistic behavior. Founded and directed by Dr. James Doty, Clinical Professor of Neurosurgery, CCARE is established within the Department of Neurosurgery. To date, CCARE has collaborated with a number of prominent neuroscientists, behavioral scientists, geneticists and biomedical researchers to closely examine the physiological and psychological correlates of compassion and altruism.

Netzwerk Achtsame Wirtschaft

WEBSITE: “Das Netzwerk Achtsame Wirtschaft e.V. (NAW) vermittelt und entwickelt das Potenzial buddhistischer Lehren für die verschiedensten Bereiche unserer Wirtschaft. Ausgangspunkt ist hierbei das Verständnis und die Schulung des eigenen Geistes. Zu diesem Zweck werden Seminare und Retreats durchgeführt, Publikationen verfasst und Initiativen ergriffen.

Im Netzwerk treffen sich Menschen, die nach sinnvollen Alternativen zum heutigen Wirtschaftssystem suchen, sich für Themen wie Achtsamkeit in der Arbeit, beim Konsum und im Umgang mit Geld interessieren und in ökonomische Zusammenhänge wirken.”

Institute for Studies in Happiness, Economy and Society

WEBSITE: “As long as the current structures of society and economy depend on “growth,” however, some people fear that a slowdown of economic growth could lead to social instability. Thus, at present almost all governments base their national policies on “economic growth” and “GDP growth.”

We are now at a point where humanity cannot avoid facing the“dilemma of economic growth.” If we do not continue to pursue economic growth in our current economic and social systems, we will have instability of employment and livelihoods. On the other hand if we consider the real limits to the Earth’s energy and other resources, ability to absorb carbon, and so on, we know that we cannot continue forever with economic growth. In recent years, researchers, politicians, and others are taking up these topics in a big way.”