What is the “technology” part of Technology of Participation?

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Many have come to think of technology narrowly…in relation to the internet and electronic devices.  But the term technology has a much broader meaning.

The word technology comes from Greek τεχνολογία (technología); from τέχνη (téchnē), meaning “art, skill, craft”, and -λογία (-logía), meaning “study of-”.[1].  So, by that definition, the Technology of Participation would be the study of the art, skill or craft of participation.  The group of folks who created, refined, and codified the Technology of Participation were just that…students of participation.  Their observations of how individuals participate in group processes led them identify some naturally occurring structures which were utilized to foster comprehensive, grassroots community development.  These structures were the foundations of what has become the Technology of Participation group facilitation methods.

Go here for a brief description of the ToP methods (click Full Screen).

Impact: Moving from Talk to Action

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We’ve all been there.  Lots of great brainstorming, visioning, and discussion…leading nowhere.  When you spend precious resources of people’s creative energy, time away from the work, and money…you want to see results.

There are many methods of holding discussions, building consensus, developing action plans, and creating strategic plans.   For maximum IMPACT all constituents should be involved in the conversation in meaningful ways…unearthing their creativity, fostering their investment in the process, and garnering their commitment to achieving the end result the group envisions.  All of the conversations should lead to great ideas AND to action that creates and sustains the vision.

The Technology of Participation (ToP) methods of group facilitation foster these processes and results.  ToP methods have been used to achieve results with large corporations and villages, in the US and across the world, involving individuals from all walks of life.  Click here for a brief introduction to the main methods (view full screen).

Visual Recording Template – Board Retreat

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This planning tool was developed for an annual board retreat.  The goal of the retreat was to concretize the strategic plan developed the previous spring.  The visual incorporates the mission statement of the organization with the meeting goal of developing strategic directions for a 12-month period.  The visual is designed to incorporate the action plans developed by each subcommittee of the board during the board retreat.  In addition, benchmarks for the full board are to be marked along the pathway to their ultimate vision for the organization.

Double-click image to enlarge.