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Rsa Exchange Manchester What You Said
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Rsa Exchange Manchester What You Said

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The Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) ran a workshop in Manchester on November 20 2008 for 100 members (Fellows) to discuss development of the Fellowship. …

The Royal Society for the encouragement of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce (RSA) ran a workshop in Manchester on November 20 2008 for 100 members (Fellows) to discuss development of the Fellowship. This is a summary of discussions

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  • 1. RSA Exchange Manchester 20th November 2008
  • 2. Contents What each group (zone) discussed and suggested What you told us and what this means What we’re going to do next
  • 3. Zone: Communication
    • We asked:
    • How do you want to communicate with each other and with the RSA?
    • How do you want the RSA and other Fellows to communicate with you?
  • 4. Zone: Communication
    • You told us:
    • You want to meet other Fellows face to face and to have meaningful communication to and from other Fellows.  
    • You want the RSA to facilitate your connections with other Fellows face to face and you also want to feel free to initiate and engage in these on your own terms
    • You want there to be more of an obvious Fellows’ presence on the website and in the journal
    • You want to be able to use the Networks platform to connect by interest and by locality
    • You want to be able to participate in lectures more directly
    • You want us to provide direction to define and make clear what is possible – eg clearer examples of initiatives (especially regional initiatives) that you can engage in
    • You want us to develop our communications strategy with you
  • 5. Zone: Connections
    • We asked:
    • Why do you want to connect with each other?
    • What is it that you (as Fellows) want to do with those connections?
    • How would you like the RSA to help you in making connections?
  • 6. Zone: Connections
    • You told us:
    • You want the RSA (and other Fellows) to act as a ‘ Critical Friend ’ - a sounding board for future ideas and projects.
    • You want to exploit the breadth and depth of the Fellowship to connect with others who share a similar mindset or interests but from backgrounds other than your own.
    • You want a variety of ways to connect with us and each other
    • You think that connections (and events) are most effective when they are grouped around a theme or shared interest
    • You want the RSA to provide the context for connections to take place.
    • You want affirmation or permission to feel enabled to connect with one another and with us for yourselves.
    • You want be able to use the strength of the RSA ‘brand’ to broker connections with other individuals (and organisations).
  • 7. Zone: Responsibilities
    • We asked:
    • What should Fellows expect to do to help build a sustainable RSA Fellowship community?
  • 8. Zone: Responsibilities
    • You told us:
      • You want a charter of shared values and behaviours that everyone can sign up to that will help create a cohesive Fellowship community, and that speak to a wider set of responsibilities to society as a whole
      • You were in general agreement that all Fellows need to take on certain personal responsibilities
      • You want a flexible model of responsibility that allows for greater or lesser involvement depending on other commitments or stages of life
      • Some of you were concerned about the lack of tools to be able to practise the responsibilities discussed
      • You want greater clarification about the purpose and opportunities of Fellowship
      • You value the breadth, diversity and distinctiveness of the Fellowship and the RSA and you want to see this continue
  • 9. Zone: Models
    • We asked :
    • What tools or resources can the RSA and Fellows provide for each other? What do groups need to be sustainable?
    • How do we measure a group’s progress or effectiveness?
  • 10. Zone: Models
    • You told us:
      • There’s a need for designated places to meet
      • You need a mixture of face to face and technologically-facilitated ways to connect and meet
      • You want to be welcomed as new Fellows by an existing Fellow in your region
      • You need training prior to conducting online discussions/meetings
      • Projects and groups need two Fellows to lead on them - take charge of/host/initiate a project/meeting - to ensure they continue
      • You prefer small groups to get around the geographically diverse nature of current regional groups
      • You want there to be an easier way to find out what’s going on in your area and what might be of interest to you
      • You want to know whether projects are actually making a difference – “if we feel we’re making a positive outcome we’re more likely to continue”
      • You don’t want projects or meetings to be constrained by measurements
  • 11. The key things you told us
    • You value the breadth, diversity, uniqueness and excellence of RSA Fellows and want to see this continue
    • You want a diverse and flexible range of options to connect and communicate with the RSA and with each other based on your interests and locations
    • You want to have a clearer idea of what the RSA stands for so that you can communicate this to potential collaborators, organisations, colleagues and new Fellows.
    • You want us to clarify what you are ‘permitted’ to do in the capacity of a Fellow of the RSA
  • 12. What this means for us
    • You value the breadth, diversity, uniqueness and excellence of RSA Fellows and want to see this continue
      • The RSA needs to continue to recruit excellent Fellows from a diverse range of backgrounds
      • The RSA needs your help in identifying potential Fellows – from your own professional or social networks - with something new to bring to the organisation
  • 13. What this means for us
    • You want a diverse and flexible range of options to connect and communicate with the RSA and with each other based on your interests and locations
      • You want to be free to create connections, meetings groups and projects, but you need the RSA to help you facilitate and initiate these exchanges
      • The RSA need to recognise that it’s not a case of ‘one size fits all’ and provide a range of ways for you to connect and communicate with us and other Fellows
      • The RSA also needs to recognise that Fellows want different things from their connections; retaining a social aspect but also allowing room for project development
      • Fellows - and regionally organised groups in particular – also need to recognise and reflect the fact that Fellows may want to communicate and connect in a number of different ways and for different reasons
      • The RSA needs to help you connect with other Fellows with shared interests and who are local to you (not necessarily those who are in the same Region)
      • You need to provide information about your interests, location and skills
  • 14. What this means for us
    • You want to have a clearer idea of what the RSA stands for so that you can communicate this to potential collaborators, organisations, colleagues and new Fellows
      • The RSA needs to clarify what it stands for and how it communicates that
      • We need to be clearer about what the RSA is - A prestigious organisation with a commitment to social change
      • and what it’s not – it’s not a social club, a secret society, a funding body…
      • Most importantly, the RSA is its Fellowship – as one Fellow said ‘We are the brand’. The interests and aims of the organisation are those of its Fellows.
  • 15. What this means for us
    • You want us to clarify what you are ‘permitted’ to do in the capacity of a Fellow of the RSA
      • The RSA needs to reaffirm the fact that you don’t need permission from anywhere – John Adam Street or regional committees – to interact, communicate, organise or develop project ideas as Fellows. Don’t wait to be asked!
      • We need to foster identity and ownership of the organisation within the Fellowship
      • Part of a Fellow’s responsibility is to spread the word and be ambassadorial
  • 16. Next steps
    • Circulation of this document on Networks Platform
    • Collation and building-in of your responses, additions and alterations
    • Facilitation of continued online discussion
    • Our suggestions for how we respond to your concerns and recommendations
    • Turning talk into action!