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Meshworking – a support service for
     Cross-cutting Sustainability Programs
A meshwork™ is a Structured Collaboration A...
1. Summary


Many organisations face the challenge of how to develop and implement
sustainability programs effectively and...
The program facilitation is a proven process that nurtures commitment
and confidence and develops team ownership, engageme...
Core challenges that this approach addresses are:

     •    How to make most effective use of diverse expertise and knowl...
2. Proven global best practice


Global best practice research3 confirms that cross-cutting programs are
most likely to su...
role in a larger functional whole. Each person is motivated by the
program goal and understands where they fit in the larg...
Meshwork Element                                             Reduces cost, time loss and risk


         An online technol...
•    Benchmark progress in the different areas of work across different
          parts of an organisation
     •    Ident...
The scorecard below is developed from London Climate Change Agency’s
program management knowledge. It shows the monthly pr...
The scorecard below shows how the progress can be compared across
different cities to facilitate benchmarking and peer-lea...
generates individual accountability and commitment to action and
collective ownership of the work.

Various facilitation t...
To support this life-cycle, a number of training modules are offered to
internal staff. They include:

     •    Learning ...
9. Meshwork Development Roadmap
Steps 1-7 explain the process used for “Program Meshwork Support” in the table on the next...
10.       Program Meshwork Support Process6
      Starting point                                  Facilitation establishes...
11.Conclusion
In initial conversations, the Program Manager for Cross-Ministry
Sustainability identified six key criteria ...
CHE and Gaiasoft offer a program meshwork support solution to reduce
the cost, time and risk of implementing cross-cutting...
Appendix 1: Selection Criteria for software to support MIDIR
methodology
“...the MIDIR methodology provides a solution to ...
Requirement                       Why it’s important                                                                   R  ...
i
  Meshwork as it relates to a social process is a trademark of CHE Netherlands on behalf of CHE Global. Meshwork as
it r...
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Dutch Govt Cross Ministry Oversight And Knowledge Sharing For Sustainability

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Outlines a meshwork approach to implementing sustainability across government departments.

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  1. 1. Meshworking – a support service for Cross-cutting Sustainability Programs A meshwork™ is a Structured Collaboration Across Organisations to Accelerate Learning and Results Contents  1.  Summary ......................................................................... 2  2.  Proven global best practice ................................................. 5  3.  A practical approach .......................................................... 5  4.  Meshwork Elements Reducing Cost Time and Risk .................. 6  5.  Online Technology Platform ................................................. 7  6.  Examples of software platform ............................................ 8  Leaders for Nature ............................................................. 8  7.  Facilitated Meetings ......................................................... 10  8.  Training Modules ............................................................. 11  9.  Meshwork Development Roadmap ...................................... 13  10.  Program Meshwork Support Process ................................. 14  11.  Conclusion .................................................................... 15  Appendix 1: Selection Criteria for software to support MIDIR methodology ........................................................................ 17  A paper by Centre for Human Emergence and Gaiasoft March 2009-03-19 Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 1
  2. 2. 1. Summary Many organisations face the challenge of how to develop and implement sustainability programs effectively and efficiently. How can many ministries, departments and agencies work together to fast track progress and results? This paper references and builds on CHE and Gaiasoft’s extensive practical experience in the Netherlands and internationally and on the global best practice research of the EU MIDIR research project. This paper outlines a meshworki support service for developing and implementing cross-cutting sustainability programs. Meshworking links people, performance and knowledge within a common program framework to achieve results. Meshworking support improves collaboration, synergy and oversight, while reducing cost, time and risk of delivering program outcomes. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 2
  3. 3. The program facilitation is a proven process that nurtures commitment and confidence and develops team ownership, engagement and capacity. The process is enabled by unique1 meshworking software which connects people, manages accountability and actions, harvesting and re-using knowledge to scale program results. The program meshwork support solution enables the program management team to: • build on the strengths and diverse perspectives of cross-cutting teams through facilitation, mentoring and online support • integrate existing knowledge and information technology resources2 within the framework of the program meshwork • build effective communities of practice for each cross-cutting project and for the sustainability team within each ministry. 1 Gaiasoft’s international patents and patents pending provide unique security and openness, protecting what must be private behind the firewall and connecting with people and resources from the public internet where appropriate. An organising framework 2 Integration is through web services standards and Service Oriented Architecture. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 3
  4. 4. Core challenges that this approach addresses are: • How to make most effective use of diverse expertise and knowledge to achieve a defined sustainability objective. • How to achieve effective collaboration, between people who are not in the same ‘chain of command’ or management hierarchy and hence cannot be simply instructed to perform tasks. • How to work across organisational and departmental silos (boundaries) ensuring the most useful contribution from different stakeholders. • How to keep an overview of all activities, tracking progress, learning from the best and supporting areas that are falling behind • How to integrate performance and results focus with supportive people-processes to create a culture of learning, innovation and achievement • How to identify and share best practices which are specifically relevant to an individual in their work • How to link performance management to best practices knowledge- sharing and effective people collaboration The meshwork facilitates effective cross-cutting project-based communities of practice and in-ministry communities of practice. Program Project Project Project Project Project Project Project Project Project Meshwork Ministry Ministry Ministry Ministry Ministry Ministry Ministry Copyright © Gaiasoft IP Ltd, 2009.  International Patents Pending.  All Rights Reserved. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 4
  5. 5. 2. Proven global best practice Global best practice research3 confirms that cross-cutting programs are most likely to succeed and scale if they: • Take an integral approach, combining attention to collective structure and culture, as well as individual mindset and behaviour • Combine a shared flexible template for performance • Include a technology platform for monitoring, measuring, collaborating and driving implementation of the template within a particular context • Give thorough attention to stakeholder engagement and mobilization • Stimulate a culture and mindset of learning and innovation (rather than predict and control) The same EU funded research identifies cross-cutting sustainability programs as an area where this approach is particularly relevant. The selection criteria for tools to support this approach are in Appendix 1 below. The meshworking support service is in use in the Ministry VROM and also the Dutch private sector collaborative sustainability network “Leaders for Nature.” 3. A practical approach A meshwork approach facilitates self-organisation, using the ‘wisdom of the crowd’ to find the simple projects, knowledge and communities of practice to achieve a complex task. A complex multi-stakeholder project is translated into an appropriate hierarchy of pillars (areas for collaboration) and conditions (which must be met to achieve success). In the case of a cross-cutting sustainability program, these pillars are likely to be the cross-cutting sustainability projects which make up the program. A meshwork support process works from the core purpose (eg sustainability), identifying pillars to support that purpose, conditions that need to be in place for a pillar to be strong, action that puts those conditions in place, and best practices that can formulate action in other parts of an organisation. In simple terms, this approach gets every person and participating organisation ‘on the same page’ understanding where they fit and their 3 MIDIR European Union Research Project Contract n° 036708: Integration of Concept in Real Risk Management Settings in Various Cultures – Online tools for developing sustainability and resilience Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 5
  6. 6. role in a larger functional whole. Each person is motivated by the program goal and understands where they fit in the larger program and where they can find the people, knowledge and resources to achieve program results. When this template is made explicit, it is possible to easily link individual actions to conditions supporting the projects within the program. It is also possible to find best practices that are directly relevant to the specific area that anyone is working on. 4. Meshwork Elements Reducing Cost Time and Risk Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 6
  7. 7. Meshwork Element Reduces cost, time loss and risk An online technology platform that Without this, valuable time is combines performance management, lost, the organisation and knowledge exchange and a administration overhead is collaboration platform. excessive and energy and motivation are likely to dissipate. Facilitated meetings designed to Without this program participants generate the content of the waste time finding the knowledge programme, as well as ownership of they need and end up repeating that content. mistakes or ‘re-inventing the wheel.’ Training modules to promote a Without this, historic cultures and mindset and culture of learning and organisational boundaries limit innovation that engages the online participation, progress and technology as an enabler. results. Peer-to-Peer mentoring supported by Without this synergies and peer the visibility of the maturity of learning opportunities remain different parts of an organisation in unexploited, capacity building is their development. slow and results are delayed. 5. Online Technology Platform With over a decade of experience in strategy formulation and implementation in global multinationals and governments, Gaiasoft has developed an online environment to support the end-to-end lifecycle of a meshwork, from formulation of purpose, through collaboration, implementation and governance. The platform is fully and uniquely compliant with the selection criteria published by the EU MIDIR best practice research project and set out in Appendix 1 to this paper. Gaiasoft’s patented4 platform links between (performance, transformation and cultural) indicators, emerging best practice solutions and communities of practice. The platform uniquely enables members of a meshwork to: • Connect people and knowledge with focus and precision • Eliminate re-inventing the wheel and repetition of costly mistakes • Rapidly scale what works • Make explicit the core areas of work and the level of progress in each area 4 Patents relating, among other things to the linking of knowledge and solutions to a measurement structure. Pending patents in US, Europe, India, China, Brazil, Japan and South Africa. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 7
  8. 8. • Benchmark progress in the different areas of work across different parts of an organisation • Identify peers from different parts of an organisation who are a step ahead and can mentor you in your current phase of development • Share and find best practices specific to people’s contexts and needs 6. Examples of software platform Leaders for Nature In the Leaders for Nature Meshwork, the program areas or ‘pillars’ are Water, Land Use, Energy Use, etc. There is a community of practice for each of these pillars. This meshwork screen shows people in the Netherlands in the Energy Sector working on Energy Use in different roles (Business, Government, NGO, Scientist, Entrepreneurs, Media) and also best practices related to the same criteria. Sustainable Resilient Cities Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 8
  9. 9. The scorecard below is developed from London Climate Change Agency’s program management knowledge. It shows the monthly progress of a city sustainability program consisting of program areas and projects. (The scorecard shows demonstration data only.) The dark blue lines are program areas including City, Transport, Buildings, Industry, Energy etc. The traffic light cells show the monthly progress of individual projects for the selected city. The ‘cloud’ symbol to the left of a project name is used to access the best practice solutions or shared knowledge available for that project. The green arrow to the left of each project name is used to access the actions outstanding for that project. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 9
  10. 10. The scorecard below shows how the progress can be compared across different cities to facilitate benchmarking and peer-learning. 7. Facilitated Meetings Critical to the success of a Meshwork initiative is the way in which people work together to achieve progress. In particular, how person-to-person, person-to-program and the human-technology interface are facilitated. In many situations, performance management systems are used to check how well people are meeting targets set by management, and then rewarding or punishing people based on that data. Program trust and commitment are replaced by compliance and people avoid risks at the expense of program results. In a program without commitment or trust people avoid reporting facts, measures are unrealistic and there is limited accountability. In an environment of trust and commitment, valuable learnings from mistakes and limitations are used as a source of innovation. Meshwork meetings create an atmosphere of shared purpose, of openness, of willingness to learn and creativity focussed on results. This Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 10
  11. 11. generates individual accountability and commitment to action and collective ownership of the work. Various facilitation tools can be used to develop effective program meshwork meetings. The U Process is used increasingly within the Dutch Government. CHE has long-term proven experience using the U process to facilitate work in Dutch Government and private sector to move rapidly and dependably from a situation of complexity and challenge to clarity of purpose and aligned commitment to action. Facilitated Meetings are used by the program meshwork team to build cross-organisational communities of practice around projects, as well as to the strategic co-ordination teams within ministries. 8. Training Modules The purpose of program Meshwork support is to build internal capacity to achieve the meshwork goals. Once the meshwork has been designed – identifying in this case ministries and projects, a matrix of communities of practice is developed. Program and project champions are identified within the organisation and their capacity for leadership and facilitation is developed. As external consultants build internal capacity, their time is increasingly leveraged and cost effective. The capacity building lifecycle moves from external consultant-facilitation to facilitation by a certified internal consultant. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 11
  12. 12. To support this life-cycle, a number of training modules are offered to internal staff. They include: • Learning how to set up, maintain and develop the technology platform • Learning how to facilitate communities of practice and review meetings for learning and innovation • Learning how to integrate people, culture and technology in transitions to sustainability • Learning how to get the most out of your colleagues in peer-to-peer mentoring The certification course “Meshworking for Results5” covers design, meshwork development, facilitation and technology-supported meshwork configuration. The training course is supported by an action learning curriculum which includes worked examples, apprenticing, on the job experience and mentoring. 1. Peer-to-Peer Mentoring One of the benefits of the technology platform is that it allows each person and community of practice to see how far developed different parts of an organisation are in different areas of sustainability. This means that a team member can quickly identify which ministry is one or more steps ahead of others and can act as peer mentors to their colleagues, increasing knowledge sharing and the speed of innovation. The Program Meshwork Team and Meshwork Support Team use the technology platform to overview meshwork development and to identify where strategic connections should be made and where there are peer learning opportunities. Scheduled or ad-hoc meetings are coordinated to stimulate and maximise the rate of peer learning. 5 Addresses strategic planning, program management and collaboration from a meshwork perspective. Required of consultants working with the Gaiasoft platform. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 12
  13. 13. 9. Meshwork Development Roadmap Steps 1-7 explain the process used for “Program Meshwork Support” in the table on the next page. The steps assume a sustainability program being implemented across multiple ministries. The same principle applies to government agencies, local governments and public-private partnerships for example. The starting point is for a group to align on and commit to a goal, in this case, for example, government as a leader in sustainability. This step requires engaging deep human commitment. This will happens for example, when it becomes clear that the goal is achievable through commitment and collaboration. The meshwork support process is designed to demonstrate and presence the possibility and achievability of the program goal and its value as a replicable success, for example by other governments. The second step is to develop a shared story of how the committed goal can be achieved. This can be done by example and by facilitating development of a shared story by the program team. The third step is to develop a template consisting of pillars, conditions, success stories which in this case are the program projects. This builds ownership of the program and develops a shared framework and template around which different stakeholders can collaborate to achieve the goal. The fourth uses the template to define a monitoring and evaluation system. In this case, breaking the program into projects which can be colour-coded using maturity models and progress tracked over time. The fifth step is development of collaborative communities of practice based on ministries and projects. This is typically achieved through a facilitated meeting, when participants are asked to place their photos and other information alongside their ministry and later underneath the particular project of the program template on which they focus. The resulting wall display of a meshwork – of project names along the top and ministry names down the side, with participant’s faces placed on the wall, is referred to as a Meshwall™. The same visual meshwork display is also presented within the Gaiaspace meshwork software at the end of the conference. This building of ministry and project- based communities of practice is an ongoing process which accelerates progress towards program goals. The sixth step supports communities of practice across ministries to deliver projects in ministries. The seventh step trains and supports internal consultants to facilitate and scale implementation. These final two steps relate to scaling a program template and solutions across ministries to achieve the overall program goal. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 13
  14. 14. 10. Program Meshwork Support Process6 Starting point Facilitation establishes commitment: “It can and will be done!” Facilitated process, dialogue or Develops a scenario or story of how the program will be presentation implemented in cross-cutting projects and ministries Facilitate chosen cross-ministry, A “template” of Projects cross project network, task force or and Conditions for Political Commitment experts to develop “template” and success and knowledge Partnership Legislation roadmap for implementation. base of success stories. MDGs 4&5 In Country Financial Cultural Resourcing Practices Health Education System Implement collaborative monitoring Monitoring to track progress of projects and conditions over and knowledge sharing. time, identify strengths, focus resources and fill gaps. Benchmarking to support peer learning. (Gaiasoft’s scorecard combines Pill ar > Condition Mar-09 Apr-09 May-09 Jun-09 Monitoring & Evaluation for projects Financial Resourci ng and conditions with tracking measures Health Budgeting Performing Performing Performing Performing and actions and stores success Gende r Budgeting Developing Developing Performing Performing Insurance System Beginning Developing Developing Developing stories.) Free Services Beginning Beginning Beginning Beginning Taxation support Developing Performing Performing Performing Coordinate development of Develop online communities of practice. This begins communities of practice with a face-to-face meeting where a for project pillars and “meshwall” is used to connect people ministries. Photo below according to in this case ministries and shows development of a projects. This process continues in an meshwall. online meshwork which other stakeholders can later join. This step is to facilitate community building for collaboration. Coordinate and align stakeholders Coordinating government, business, community, media, etc working between different stakeholder using template to direct resources to identify pillars and groups and communities. conditions for success in each place, eg Kenya/Nairobi. Training of community development Training and support internal facilitators to align and and coordination specialists to scale. implement program projects. 6 A generic Gaiasoft framework for meshwork development adapted here for sustainability programs. The framework is copyright © Gaiasoft IP Ltd. 2006-2009. International Patents Pending. All rights reserved. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 14
  15. 15. 11.Conclusion In initial conversations, the Program Manager for Cross-Ministry Sustainability identified six key criteria to enable him to implement the program more effectively. The table below lists those criteria and illustrates how Meshwork Program support meets the criteria: Criteria for Program Support Program Meshwork Support An overview of activities and The scorecard provides a traffic- progress light summary of program measures, progress indicators and actions Identification and sharing of best Knowledge and best practices are practices linked directly to the measures they relate to for immediate access Connecting people to people where People are automatically connected effective by project, ministry and role Supporting a culture of innovation Meshwork facilitation and practical and learning tools ensure feedback and learning Knowledge sharing relevant to Meshwork delivers precisely specific contexts and needs relevant knowledge Hybrid function to bridge internal Meshwork brings together internal firewall and external people and knowledge The Program Meshwork Support meets the specific Criteria for Program Support listed above. Global best practice from the EU MIDIR research project clearly indicates the need for integrated program management for sustainability. The solution outlined in this paper is uniquely and fully compliant with EU MIDIR project selection criteria set out in Appendix 1. Meshworking is an integrated approach that is in use in Dutch Government (Ministry VROM) and cross-sector sustainability projects (Leaders for Nature) today. Meshworking is uniquely suitable for cross- cutting sustainability programs. Meshworking enables effective identification, sharing and implementation of solutions to the complex challenges of achieving sustainability. Meshworking requires technology support which connects people, performance and knowledge within the framework of the meshwork. CHE and Gaiasoft are uniquely experienced in supporting program meshworks through CHE’s extensive facilitation and consulting experience and Gaiasoft’s proven and patented technology platform. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 15
  16. 16. CHE and Gaiasoft offer a program meshwork support solution to reduce the cost, time and risk of implementing cross-cutting sustainability programs. The meshwork approach works across organisation boundaries even when solutions are not fully defined, bringing the rigour of program management to the challenges of implementing cross-cutting sustainability programs. For more information, contact: Center for Human Emergence Peter Merry; peter@humanemergence.nl; +31 (0)61 355 4129 Gaiasoft Morel Fourman; morel.fourman@gaiasoft.com; +44 (0)207 387 1745 Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 16
  17. 17. Appendix 1: Selection Criteria for software to support MIDIR methodology “...the MIDIR methodology provides a solution to the rapid, scalable transformation of complex systems through knowledge sharing and learning. The approach applies directly to collaboration for climate change response, implementation of resilience and sustainable development. Figure 4.1 above depicts a generic end-to-end process from goal to governance system. To facilitate the implementation of the end to end process described above, an integrated technology platform is required to support accountability, measurement of performance, transformation and culture, management of actions, capturing related knowledge of Positive Proof Points as a reusable template or pattern library. These templates must be implementable as a governance and management system at multiple levels of organisation or governance, for example national, provincial and local. To facilitate the collaboration across functions and organisations, lenses are required allowing different stakeholder groups to understand through the perspectives of others. Finally the same collaboration platform must be securely, shareable between different stakeholders across boundaries of organisation and function, allowing different groups to receive the information they need, but only what they are entitled to. The suitability of a software tool or platform to support this approach can be assessed using the requirements in Figure 6.1 “Selection Criteria for software to support large-scale learning and implementation.” In comparing and selecting tools, a prospective solution can be rated: Red/Yellow/Green or Non-Compliant/Partially Compliant/Compliant for each of the requirements in the table below using a maturity model/check list. Below is Figure 6.1 Selection Criteria for software to support large-scale learning and implementation from MIDIR Report 2.4. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 17
  18. 18. Requirement Why it’s important R Y G 1. Accountability Accountability provides the basis for maintaining standards, driving improvement and change. 2. Measuring Measurement provides the basis for accountability. performance Performance measures indicate whether a process is delivering. Performance measures are most relevant to a stable organisation. Where structural and cultural transformation is required, the key accountability of leaders may be for transformation and for culture and values. 3. Measuring Transformation of an organisation depends on many projects transformation and changes – structures, processes, systems. The management system must be able to measure the transformation of structures, processes and systems. 4. Measuring culture Transformation of organisations depends on culture, on trust, on collaboration. The management system must be able to measure the culture of the organisation as it is and the gap between current culture and desired culture. 5. Action management Action management is the driver of results and the engine of continuous improvement (through the plan-do-check-act cycle of quality management). 6. Knowledge: Knowledge is organised according to the measure it impacts, Challenges, Solutions the 80/20 challenges which must be met to perform in that & Case Stories measure and the 80/20 solutions, supported by case studies.ii 7. Reusable templates Reusable templates consist of measures, knowledge and action learning resources which are used to drive change through a performance management process. 8. Fractal – multiple Reusable templates appropriate to different types and levels levels – National; of organisation, for example business and government at Provincial; Local national, provincial and local levels. Management and knowledge management systems enable collaboration and learning between types and levels of organisation. This is a requirement due to the increasing interdependency between different sectors and organisation types. 9. Lenses – multiple Different stakeholders have different perspectives on the views for different transition – for example, financial, environmental, compliance stakeholders and regulatory. 10. Interagency / multi Different stakeholders and supply chain partners require stakeholder – lenses, confidential subsets of shared information to allow filters, content optimisation and tuning of performance, for example across a network of government agencies or businesses in a supply chain. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 18
  19. 19. i Meshwork as it relates to a social process is a trademark of CHE Netherlands on behalf of CHE Global. Meshwork as it relates to collaboration, performance management or knowledge management software is a trademark of Gaiasoft IP Ltd. ii 80/20 Challenges refer to the small number of key challenges which are barriers to performance. 80/20 solutions refer to the small number of key solutions that address each challenge. Case studies refer to the positive proof points which demonstrate solutions. Copyright (c) 2009, CHE and Gaiasoft International Ltd. International Patents Pending. All Rights Reserved. 19

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