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A strategic Analysis of Knowledge Sharing and Social Change Platforms

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An analysis of the sustainability of platforms for social engagement and social empowerment based on the @pentagrowth. Positioning of the Pattern Languages for Systemic Transformation (PLAST) project.

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A strategic Analysis of Knowledge Sharing and Social Change Platforms

  1. 1.       A  Strategic  Analysis  of       Knowledge  Exchange  and  Social  Change  Pla9orms     Posi;oning  the  PLAST  Project   Helene Finidori CC BY - SA
  2. 2. The  present  analysis  of  the  sustainability  of  pla2orms  for  social  engagement  and   social  empowerment  incorporates  insights  derived  from  the  exponen:al  growth  of   web  based  businesses.       The  @pentagrowth  model  on  which  it  is  based  was  elaborated  from  a  study  of  50   web  businesses  that  achieved  annual  growth  of  greater  than  50  percent  per  annum   (in  revenue,  number  of  users  and  impact)  for  five  consecu:ve  years  from  2008.       The  study  iden:fied  five  laws  for  exponen:al  growth  and,  on  this  basis,  five  levers,   each  with  a  scale  onto  which  various  business  models  can  be  posi:oned.         Creus,  Javier,  2015,  @PENTAGROWTH  REPORT:  The  five  levers  of  accelerated  growth.  A  new  point  of  view  on  the  keys  for   growth  for  organizaDons  in  the  digital  environment  of  the  XXI  century.    Ideas  for  Change  .  hIp://pentagrowth.com/report/     Adap;ng  the  @pentagrowth  Model  
  3. 3. The  five  laws  that  characterize  the  poten:al  for  a  pla2orm  to  grow  exponen:ally  as   iden:fied  in  the  @pentagrowth  study  are  the  following:     ●  Collect:  the  smaller  the  effort  an  organisa:on  requires  to  build  its  available   inventory,  the  greater  its  poten:al  to  leverage  those  assets.         ●  Connect:  the  larger  the  number  of  nodes  that  an  organisa:on  connects,  the   greater  the  poten:al  of  the  organisa:on.         ●  Empower:  the  larger  the  number  of  capaci:es  of  its  users  that  an  organiza:on   integrates  into  its  business,  the  greater  its  poten:al  growth.         ●  Enable:  the  larger  the  number  of  value  creators  that  use  the  tools  provided  by   the  organisa:on  to  generate  their  own  business,  the  greater  its  growth   poten:al.       ●  Share:  the  larger  the  community  that  shares  a  sense  of  resource  ownership   with  the  organiza:on,  the  greater  the  organisa:on’s  growth  poten:al.        
  4. 4. The  @pentagrowth  laws  were  adapted  into  levers  and  scales  allowing  to  describe   the  business  models  observed.       We  adapted  the  @pentagrowth  model  and  its  scales  to  evaluate,  from  the   perspec:ve  of  user  experience  and  its  effect  on  the  scalability  and  sustainability  of   a  pla2orm,  a  variety  of  the  state-­‐of-­‐the-­‐art  knowledge  co-­‐crea:on  and  exchange   pla2orms  and  prac:ces:  maps,  online  encyclopedia  of  the  first  genera:on,  wikis,   sustainability  social  networks,  knowledge  commons  of  open  source  soTware,   systems  thinking  prac:ce,  paIern  language  prac:ce.       The  five  levers  (derived  from  the  original  model)  and  the  scales  we  adapted  for   the  present  study  follow.    
  5. 5.   Collect     In  the  @pentagrowth  model,  the  smaller  the  effort  an  organisa:on   requires  to  build  its  available  inventory  (centralized,  decentralized,   commons),  the  greater  its  poten:al  to  leverage  those  assets.         In  our  adapted  model,  the  inventory  is  both  what  the  pla2orm  aIracts  and   what  it  builds.  It  emphasises  the  ‘connectability’  of  the  elements,  their   ease  of  discovery  and  sharability,  their  ‘aIrac:on’  and  ‘ac:va:on’  power,   and  ul:mately  how  they  can  mobilise  higher  levels  of  usage  by  leveraging   network  effects.       Our  scale  ranges  from  collec:ng  single  instances/objects  (such  as  people,   organiza:ons,  events  in  a  map  or  directory),  through  networks  of  objects   (such  as  processes,  inter-­‐related  knowledge  bases,  groups  of  users  in  a  wiki   or  social  network),  to  systems  with  their  inten:ons,    ‘objects’,  processes,   and  outcomes  (such as an organisation).     !  The  more  ‘genera8ve’  the  elements  collected,  the  greater  the  poten8al   for  a=rac8on  and  connec8on.         Collect   Inventory   Instances   Systems   Networks  
  6. 6.   Connect       In  the  @pentragrowth  model,  the  larger  the  number  of  nodes  (people,   situa:ons,  things)  that  an  organisa:on  connects,  the  greater  the  poten:al   of  the  organisa:on.         In  our  adapted  model,  we  not  only  consider  the  number  of  nodes   connected  but  also  the  genera:ve  quality  and  enabling  poten:al  of  the   connec:ons  to  produce  an  op:mal  flow  between  the  parts.  This  is  best   achieved  through  shared  social-­‐objects.     Our  scale  ranges  from  connec:ng  people  (such  as  in  a  social  network),  to   connec:ng  knowledge/ideas  (such  as  in  a  wiki)  to  connec:ng  praxis  and   thus  ac:on  (such  as  in  a  repository  recording  s:gmerge:c  memory).       !  The  closer  to  praxis  and  ac8on  the  connec8ons  are  made,  the   greater  the  poten8al  for  produc8ve  interac8ons.     Engeström,  Jyri.  Why  some  social  network  services  work  and  others  don’t  —  Or:  the  case  for   object-­‐centered  sociality  <hIp://bit.ly/1oL6JfM>  [Accessed  10th  April  2015]     Connect   Poten;al   People   Praxis   Knowledge  
  7. 7. Empower       In  the  @pentagrowth  model,  the  larger  the  number  of  capaci:es  of  users  (as   users,  producers  or  other  role)  that  an  organiza:on  integrates  into  its  business,   the  greater  its  poten:al  growth.         In  our  adapted  model,  in  addi:on  to  the  number  of  capaci:es  or  roles,  we  also   focus  on  the  diversity  and  scale  of  capabili:es  of  users  the  pla2orm  can  unleash   to  maximize  individual  and  collec:ve  agency  and  help  drive  change  across   domains.         Our  scale  ranges  from  empowering  individuals  (to  generate  autonomy),  to   empowering  collabora:ons  and  communi:es  (to  generate  convergence,   cohesiveness),  to  empowering  en:re  diverse  ecosystems  (to  generate   polycentric  coherence  and  coalescence/mutual  reinforcement  of  effects)     !  The  greater  the  diversity  and  scale  of  agencies  empowered,  the  greater   the  poten8al  for  systemic  transforma8on.         Empower   Agency   Individuals   Ecosystems   Collabora:ons  
  8. 8.     Enable     In  the  @pentagrowth  model,  the  larger  the  number  of  value  creators  that  use  the   tools  provided  by  the  organisa:on  to  generate  their  own  business  (provide,  co-­‐ market,  co-­‐create),  the  greater  its  growth  poten:al.       Our  adapted  model  focuses  on  the  responsibility  for  the  provision  of  content  and   tools  to  users  to  create  their  own  value  and  the  incen:ve,  empowerment  and   agency  of  users  to  maintain  these  generators  of  value.       Our  scale  ranges  from  provide  (content),  to  co-­‐produce  (ac:onable  knowledge),  to   co-­‐nurture  (a  whole  genera:ve  system,  the  pla2orm  itself).       !  The  greater  the  incen8ve  for  users  to  co-­‐nurture  the  whole  plaCorm  system,   the  greater  the  poten8al  for  keeping  the  content  and  tools  updated  and  alive.         Enable   Value   Provide   Co-­‐nurture   Co-­‐produce  
  9. 9. Share     In  the  @pentagrowth  model,  the  larger  the  community  that  has  a  shared  sense  of   resource  ownership  with  the  organiza:on  (proprietary,  non  commercial,  open),  the   greater  the  organisa:on’s  growth  poten:al.       Our  adapted  model  takes  open  as  a  given,  and  focuses  on  the  degrees  of  joint  sense  of   ownership  of  the  pla2orm  itself.  Whether  a  user  has  access  to  plain  informa:on,  or  a   system  of  ac:onable  items,  will  affect  their  iden:fica:on  with,  adop:on  and  shaping   (via  content,  processes  of  co-­‐produc:on  and  governance)  of,  a  pla2orm.       Our  scale  ranges  from  a  joint  sense  of  ownership  of  output,  process,  or  system.       !  The  greater  the  appropria8on  of  the  whole  system  by  its  users,  the  greater  the   incen8ve  for  the  on-­‐going  shaping  and  adapta8on  of  the  plaCorm  to  needs.       Share   Ownership   Output   System   Process  
  10. 10. The  correla:on  between  levers  display  the  essen:al  quali:es  pla2orms  must  have  to  grow,   scale  and  thrive.  Here  again,  our  correla:ons  are  different  from  the  @pentagrowth.         Between  Collect  and  Connect,  the  quan:ty  and   quality  of  what  is  collected  and  therefore  the   poten:al  for  connec:on  and  for  produc:ve   interac:on  influences  the  extent  of  possibili:es   that  can  be  unleashed,  and  thus  the  Scope  of  the   pla2orm,  and  ul:mately  its  ability  to  scale.   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Instances   Systems   Networks   web  
  11. 11.   Between  Connect  and  Empower,  the   poten:al  to  connect  a  variety  of  kinds  of   agencies  and  capabili:es  and  ini:ate  a   flow  of  produc:ve  interac:ons,   determines  the  Reach,  or  capacity  for   transforma:on  and  impact  brought  by   the  pla2orm’s  ac:vity.         Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   web   Our  examples  will  be  posi:oned     on  this  web  graph  
  12. 12.   At  the  intersec:on  of  Empower  and   Enable,  polycentric  agency  combined   with  the  ability  to  generate  value,   maximizes  the  poten:al  for   Actualiza;on  across  the  board.         Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  13. 13.   With  Share  and  Enable,  the  sense  of   ownership  and  on-­‐going  regenera:on  of   pla2orm  output  as  well  as  processes  and   infrastructure  by  its  community  are  the   drivers  for  the  Sustainability  both  of  the   prac:ce,  the  system  enabled  by  the   pla2orm,  and  the  pla2orm  itself.         Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  14. 14.   Between  Share  and  Collect,  how   shared  inventory  is  renewed  and   kept  alive  by  a  community,   determines  the  Resilience  of  the   pla2orm  as  genera:ve  system,  and   its  capacity  to  adapt  to  change.       Collect   Inventory   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   web  
  15. 15. Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web   Our  examples  will  be  posi:oned     on  this  web  graph  
  16. 16. Visualizing  Informa;on  -­‐  Maps   Collect  instances  up  to  generaDve  systems  ,  Connect  praxis   Ephemeral  Empowering,  Sharing  and  Enabling       Maps  are  excellent  tools  to  promote  visibility  of  something  -­‐-­‐  to  provide  an  inventory  of  instances  and   locate  it,  geographically  or  in  a  classifica:on.  The  open  mapping  soTware  Ushahidi  developed  in  Kenya   to  report  post  presiden:al  elec:on  violence  in  2007  has  successfully  been  used  for  emergency   repor:ng.  In  2010,  40,000  reports  were  sent  out  and  4000  districts  covered  in  the  aTermath  of  the  Hai:   earthquake.  Crowd-­‐sourced  maps  have  been  popular  since  then  in  par:cular  for  ac:vism  mapping  or   alterna:ve  solu:ons  mapping.  Most  of  the  solu:ons  associated  to  social  change  are  related  to  mapping.     The  risk  however  is  ‘one  shot  mapping’.  Maps  that  are  created  around  a  specific  event  and  an   immediate  need  for  ac:on  (by  ac:va:ng  the  ‘empower’  lever),    quickly  become  obsolete  without   ongoing  ac:vity;  this  is  true  for  geographical  maps,  and  inventories,  but  also  more  spohis:cated  maps   such  as  mind  maps,  ontologies,  or  genera:ve  systems.  A  dedicated  blog  called  Dead  Ushahidi,  (which   used  to  map  dead  crowdmaps  and  is  now  dead  itself!),  lists  the  shortcomings  of  crowdsourced  maps:   “Mapping  doesn't  equal  change…  Just  because  you  built  it  doesn't  mean  they  will  come”.  Maps  that   predominantly  push  the  ‘collect’  lever  need  sense  of  ownership  (‘share’  lever)  and  ac:vity  or  ac:on   (‘enable’  lever)  to  achieve  network  effect,  scale,  and  remain  alive.     hIps://deadushahidi.crowdmap.com/page/index/1  [Retrieved  10  April  2015]    
  17. 17. Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   Maps   web  web  
  18. 18. Digital  Encyclopedias   Collect  networks  and  Connect  knowledge   Weak  on  Empowering,  Sharing  and  Enabling       First  genera:on  digital  encyclopedias  started  as  online  versions  of  paper  encyclopedias.  The  currently  stalled,  but  soon  to   be  re-­‐launched,  Encyclopedia  of  World  Problems  and  Human  PotenDal  is  a  good  example  of  a  database  of  sustainability-­‐ related  knowledge  comprising  systemic  inquiry  using  paIern-­‐like  templates,  with  a  pluralis:c  approach  such  as  we  are   developing  in  the  PLAST  project.  It  was  started  in  1972  as  a  paper  encyclopedia  (first  published  in  1976)  by  the  Union  of   Interna:onal  Associa:ons  (UIA)  and  Mankind  2000,  to  collect  and  present  informa:on  on  the  problems  humanity  is   confronted  with,  as  well  as  the  challenges  such  problems  pose  to  concept  forma:on,  values  and  development  strategies   from  a  broad  range  of  perspec:ves.  The  Encyclopedia  was  digi:zed  in  1996,  brought  to  the  web  in  1998,  and  opened  to  the   public  in  1999.         The  informa:on  content  was  collated  mainly  from  civil  society,  including  materials  produced  by  the  20,000+  interna:onal   organisa:ons  profiled  regularly  in  UIA’s  Yearbook  of  InternaDonal  OrganizaDons;  then  classified,  structured  (into  open   hierarchies  and  causal  chains),  recombined  and  made  accessible  through  AI-­‐like  mechanisms.  The  team  struggled  with  the   challenge  of  connec:ng    the  knowledge  so  produced  with  poten:al  users.  “Who  is  that  for?”  or  “How  would  I  use   this?”were  ques:ons  that  oTen  asked  by  UIA  members.      The  Encyclopedia’s  co-­‐founder,  Anthony  Judge,  recalls  debates   about  the  difficulty  to  pin  down  problems  and  the  diverging  priori:es  of  the  various  stakeholders  on  the  most  pressing   issues.  Judge  also  men:ons  the  lack  of  tools  available  at  the  :me  to  represent  and  navigate  complex  forms  of  informa:on   in  graphic  form.   The  Encyclopedia  was  created  to  collect  and  connect  knowledge  based  on  a  systemic  concept  similar  to  PLAST’s;  but  with   very  liIle  use  of  sharing,  empowering  and  enabling  levers  (ownership  taken  by  users  and  the  community  in  terms  of   maintenance  of  both  the  knowledge  and  the  tools).  The  Encyclopedia’s  ac:vity  started  to  slow  down  around  2005  for  want   of  funding,  stopping  completely  in  2008.     hIp://www.uia.org/encyclopedia  [retrieved  5  April  2015]   Commentaries  on  Encyclopedia  of  World  Problems  and  Human  Poten:al.    hIp://kairos.laetusinpraesens.org/encycom_ee  [retrieved  10  April  2015]   Judge,  Anthony,  1991,  Encyclopedia  Illusions:  Ra:onale  for  an  Encyclopedia  of  World  Problems  and  Human  Poten:al.       hIp://kairos.laetusinpraesens.org/91enill_9_h_1  [retrieved  10  April  2015]   Encyclopedia  of  World  Problems  and  Human  Poten:al,  Assessment:  Strengths  and  weaknesses.   hIp://kairos.laetusinpraesens.org/43assess_ee  [retrieved  10  April  2015]        
  19. 19. Encyclopedia  UIA   web  web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  20. 20. Sharing  Informa;on  -­‐  Social  Networks   Collect  networks,  moderate  Connec;on  of  knowledge   Weak  on  Empowering,  Enabling,  Sharing  of  the  resource     Probably  the  most  striking  state-­‐of-­‐the-­‐art  example  is  Wiser  Earth  (Wiser  standing  for  World  Index  for  Social  and  Environmental   Responsibility).  Started  in  2007  as  a  directory  of  non-­‐profit  organiza:ons,  it  became  a  social  network  in  2009.  Wiser  was   organized  around  a  master  list  of  issues  which  were  "networked"  in  such  a  way  that  registered  users  could  edit  the  "connec:ons"   of  each  issue  to  organiza:ons,  resources,  jobs,  events  and  groups.  The  website  featured  groupware  and  social  networking   components,  including  graphical  "network  maps".       Despite  having  115,000  organiza:on  members  and  80,000  individual  members,  3000  working  groups,  and  eight  million  pages  of   published  content,  Wiser  closed  down  in  2014,  ostensibly  because  the  organiza:on  could  not  keep  up  with  the  technology.  The   official  leIer  stated:  “...maintaining  social  media  pla2orms  and  tools  comes  at  a  cost.  The  soTware  technologies  that  we  are  using   need  con:nual  maintenance  and  upgrades.”  (source  Wikipedia).  Off  the  record,  addi:onal  reasons  for  the  shut-­‐down  included  an   accumula:on  of  informa:on  that  was  hardly  ever  updated  and  insufficient  ac:vity  and  cross-­‐pollina:on  among  groups,  rendering   the  project  sub-­‐viable  and  unable  to  jus:fy  the  costs  of  maintenance  of  the  site.     Wiser  collected  communi:es  around  issues  and  sustainability  domains;  the  social  mechanism  adopted  allowed  (and  required)   users  to  connect  to  each  other  and  to  issues.  Users  who  were  empowered  to  co-­‐create  did  not  maintain  and  curate  the   connec:ons  and  knowledge  they  had  produced.  This  knowledge  was  not  vital  to  them.  It  did  not  provide  a  return  in  livelihood  or   achievement  that  would  jus:fy  the  :me  they  invested  in  contribu:ng  to  the  content  and  ac:vi:es.  The  membership  scaled,  but   the  quality  of  the  data  and  the  interac:ons  did  not  follow.  There  were  few  bridges  across  silos.  Without  a  sense  of  ownership  that   users  acquire  when  they  are  not  only  empowered  but  also  enabled,  a  community  does  not  take  care  of  a  pla2orm.  The  burden   falls  on  the  shoulders  of  the  centralized  ini:a:ng  organiza:on,  which  cannot  follow.     Wiser.org  Wikipedia  entry  <hIp://bit.ly/1Fwwmnv>[Retrived  10  April  2015]   Wiser  Earth’s  Execu:ve  director’s  leIer  <hIp://bit.ly/1ckwvDF>[Retrived  10  April  2015]    
  21. 21. Wiser  Earth   web  web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  22. 22. Co-­‐Producing  Knowledge  -­‐  Wikis   Collect  networks  and  Connect  knowledge,   Share  process,  Empower  autonomy,  Enable  co-­‐produc:on.     Wikipedia  is  the  state-­‐of-­‐the-­‐art  example  of  successful  applica:on  of  wiki  to  the  aggrega:on  and  interconnec:on  of  knowledge.   With  the  help  of  its  editors,  the  wiki  has  evolved  into  a  structure  able  to  produce  a  working  reliability  of  informa:on,  with   processes  that,  “[F]oster  the  ‘federa:on’  of  knowledge,  a  network  of  voices  that  don’t  exactly  say  the  same  thing,  but  that   contribute,  through  their  very  diversity,  to  a  larger  whole.  From  that  larger  whole,  a  working  consensus  can  emerge.”  The  working   consensus  allows  a  meta-­‐stabiliza:on  of  the  knowledge  for  a  key  por:on  of  what  is  produced,  and  flagging  of  content  with  liIle   certainty  and  a  lot  of  controversy  as  uncertain  or  un-­‐resolved,  and  documented  as  such.   The  editor  survey  undertaken  in  2011,  however,  notes  a  decline  in  editor  par:cipa:on  across  languages,  a  possible  consequence   of  “edit  wars”  and  harassment  reported  by  editors.  This  has  caused  Wikipedia  to  adopt  more  rigid  editorial  rules  and  precau:ons.   There  is  a  dilemma,  however:  on  the  one  hand  that  heavier  top-­‐down  cura:on  of  knowledge  disempowers  poten:al  contributors   and  works  against  par:cipa:ve  content-­‐sharing;  on  the  other  hand,  completely  free  and  open  edi:ng  endangers  the  quality  of   the  content,  which  then  may  discourage  par:cipa:on  from  well-­‐meaning  editors  and  drive  away  readers.   Regarding  the  levers,  Wikipedia  collects  and  connects  knowledge,  empowers  its  users  for  co-­‐crea:on,  and  shares  through   common  ownership  of  the  process,  co-­‐crea:on  of  content  and  co-­‐development  of  the  Wikimedia  tool.  Wikipedia  does  not  enable   the  building  of  market,  i.e.  a  livelihood-­‐sustaining  system  based  on  the  commons.  Producers  of  Wikipedia,  the  editors,  are  not  the   ones  who  benefit  from  its  usage,  or  not  in  a  direct  way.  To  some  observers,  the  model  that  relies  on  editors’  pride  and  personal   fulfillment  is  a  fragile  one.       Wikimedia  Founda:on  (2011).  Wikipedia  Editors  Study:  Results  from  the  Editor  Survey,  April  2011.  <hIp://bit.ly/1Fl9Qhi>[Retrieved  5  April  2015]   Cunningham  op.  cit.   Postrel,  V.  (2014).  Who  killed  Wikipedia?  Pacific  Standard  Nov.  2014  <hIp://bit.ly/1DjOPXn>[Retrieved  5  April  2015]   hIp://paIern-­‐library.sec-­‐bridge.eu/paIern-­‐library/  [retrieved  5.  April  2015]   hIp://polemictweet.com/about.php  [retrieved  5.  April  2015]   Reiners,,  R.  (2014).  An  Evolving  PaIern  Library  for  Collabora:ve  Project  Documenta:on.  Shaker  Aachen,  Germany   Jemielniak  D.  (2014),  Common  Knowledge?  An  Ethnography  of  Wikipedia,  Stanford  University  Press    
  23. 23. Wikipedia   web  web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  24. 24. Prac;cal  knowledge/Specialized  wikis     Collect  networks  and  Connect  praxis,   Share  output,  moderately  Empower  collabora:on  and  weak  Enablement       Wikipedia  has  reached  the  cri:cal  mass  that  enables  it  to  collect  and  evolve  a  huge  corpus  of  interconnected  diversified   knowledge  and  to  aIract  a  large  community  of  knowledge  producers  to  keep  it  alive.  Smaller  specialized  communi:es,  such  as   Apropedia  and  the  P2P  Founda:on,  seek  to  provide  their  members  with  working  knowledge.  There  are,  however,  few  resources   to  document  the  prac:cal  applica:on  and  results  of  implementa:on  of  such  working  knowledge  to  feed  back  into  the  knowledge   base.  The  format  and  interoperability  of  the  knowledge,  the  degree  of  upda:ng  and  cura:on  of  the  knowledge,  and  the  size  of   the  ac:ve  contribu:ng  communi:es,  are  variable.  However,  many  ac:ve  members  of  these  communi:es  share  how  difficult  it  is   to  keep  par:cipa:on  going  and  to  keep  the  data  alive.  Many  users  also  complain  about  the  difficulty  of  querying  and  naviga:ng   basic  wikis  where  naviga:on  relies  on  the  categoriza:on  of  the  data,  something  communi:es  don’t  always  do  well.  Because  of   the  split  between  administrators  and  users,  par:cipants  may  not  feel  a  sense  of  shared  ownership  or  responsibility.     Small  communi:es  would  benefit  from  the  structure  and  interoperability  of  the  paIern  language  format,  from  the  possibility  to   develop  and  maintain  their  own  repositories  of  paIerns  and  from  the  perspec:ve  gained  by  exploring  greater  bodies  of   knowledge  to  find  challenges,  analyses,  prac:ces  and  models  relevant  to  their  ac:vity  which  can  help  deepen  and  expand  the   reach  and  possibili:es  of  the  community.    
  25. 25. Specialized  Wikis   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  26. 26. Co-­‐Producing  Value  -­‐  Linux  +  Git   Knowledge  commons  of  open  source  soTware   Collect  genera:ve  processes  and  Connect  ac:on,   Share  system,  Empower  cohesiveness  and  Enable  co-­‐nurturing       Linux  is  not  strictly  speaking  a  pla2orm  for  collec:ve  awareness.  Nonetheless,  it  is  based  on  superla:ve  communal  principles  and   mechanisms  and  cons:tutes  one  of  the  most  sustainable  genera:ve  systems  using  the  internet.       Different  from  Wikipedia  and  most  other  knowledge  repositories,  the  users  of  Linux  are  also  the  producers  of  their  knowledge   commons  and  build  their  livelihoods  from  it.  By  observing  the  Linux  community  of  prac:ce,  we  learn  that  a  mature  knowledge   commons  has  the  following  elements:  knowledge,  media,  user  community,  rules  of  engagement,  use  and  evalua:on  processes,   and  livelihood  genera:ng  capacity;  it  operates  as  a  dynamic  en:ty,  maintained  and  evolving  through  the  constant  prac:cal   engagement  of  its  user  community.  Linux  community  praxis  scores  highly  on  all  the  levers  of  growth.  However,  being  a   homogenous  community  with  conscribed  purpose,  it  does  not  bridge  diversity  between  domains.     Of  par:cular  interest  in  rela:on  to  knowledge  exchange  is  the  Git  fork/merge  system,  which  renders  the  capacity  to  copy  all  or   part  of  the  soTware,  modify  it  and  bring  the  modified  instance  back  into  the  repository.  The  benefit  here  is  that  1)  what  is   distributed  among  a  mul:tude  of  users  can  be  consolidated  in  a  common  repository  (actually  an  ecosystem  of  interrelated   repositories)  that  captures  the  collec:ve  intelligence  of  the  community;  2)  it  encourages  broad  par:cipa:on  by  welcoming  any   user  and  form  of  involvement  at  the  ‘local’  repository  level  while  ensuring  an  overall  quality  control  with  mul:ple  possibili:es  of     'filtering'  on  the  ‘validated’  product;  and  3)  it  fosters  a  sense  of  ownership  of  the  users/producers  over  the  whole  system.     In  this  text  we  use  Linux  as  short  for  “GNU/Linux”,  i.e.  the  well  known  open  source  opera:ng  system.  Strictly  speaking  “Linux”   refers  just  to  the  kernel  or  heart  of  the  system.     Hess,  C.  &  E.  Ostrom,  2007.  Understanding  Knowledge  as  a  Commons:  from  theory  to  prac:ce.  Cambridge  MA:  MIT  Press.   Bauwens,  M.  (2012).  A  Synthe:c  Overview  of  the  Collabora:ve  Economy.  P2P  FoundaDon  -­‐  Orange  Labs  <hIp://oran.ge/1FrbbZB>[Retrieved  10  April  2015]    
  27. 27. Linux    on  Git   web  web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  28. 28. Systems  Thinking  as  prac;ce   Connect  praxis  at  the  local  level,  unsystema:c  Collect     Empower  individuals,  weak  Enable  and  Share    other  than  local     There  are  many  similari:es  between  systems  thinking  and  paIern  thinking  (of  which  paIern  language  is  a  tool).  Both  approach   problem  solving  viewing  "problems"  as  parts  of  an  overall  system.  Like  paIern  thinking,  systems  thinking  is  based  on  the  idea  that   the  components  of  a  system  cannot  be  seen  in  isola:on,  but  rather  in  the  context  of  the  rela:onships  they  have  with  each  other,   with  the  whole,  and  with  other  systems.     Most  systems  thinking  prac:ce  focuses  on  simula:on  of  a  situa:on’s  structure:  describing  the  underlying  paIerns  of  behavior,   the  underlying  structures  responsible  for  the  paIern  of  behavior  that  unfolds,  and  the  mental  models  responsible  for  the   underlying  structures.  PaIerns  of  behavior  are  usually  expressed  as  circles  of  causality;    those  with  similar  structure  are   recognised  as  system  archetypes.    Also  iden:fied  are  leverage  points  that  enable  efficient  changes  in  the  system.   System  archetypes  are  similar  to  paIerns.  A  major  difference  is  that  they  are  composed  of  closed  loops  that  are  ‘performa:ve’  on   their  own,  whereas  systems  of  paIerns  are  chainings  or  combina:ons  of  elements  that  can  be  probed  at  each  link.   System  thinking  is  best  applied  to  situa:ons  where  stakeholders  can  agree  on  a  methodology  (there  are  many  available)  and  on   the  boundaries  of  an  issue.  However,  the  :me  it  takes  to  reach  agreement  on  the  boundaries  of  the  system  being  studied  (as  this   system  is  inextricably  part  of  a  larger  system  so  boundaries  are  always  arbitrary),  and  the  difficulty  of  choosing  a  place  to  start   understanding  and  probing  a  systemic  model  that  is  expressed  in  circles  of  causal  loops  are  probably  reasons  why  systems   thinking  hasn’t  been  adopted  more  widely.       A  pressing  ques:on  currently  among  systems  thinking  prac::oners  is:  how  to  conduct  a  systemic  inquiry  in  an  orderly,  repeatable   and  understandable  fashion.     The  systems  thinking  and  paIern  language  communi:es  can  gain  a  lot  by  working  together,  systems  thinking  bringing  more  depth   to  the  systemic  inquiry  of  paIern  languages.  Systems  thinking  would  gain  by  having  its  approaches,  archetypes  and  models   formaIed  more  systema:cally,  and  in  iterable  ways,  with  a  documenta:on  framework  that  allow  hypothesis  and  incremental   probing  in  a  design  driven  process.       Systems  Thinking  Methodologies,  Systemswiki.org.<hIp://bit.ly/1CKKg3N>  [Retrieved  10  April  2015]   Systems  Thinking,  a  Disciplined  Approach,  Systems-­‐Thinking.org.  <hIp://bit.ly/1NuFHWL>[Retrieved  10  April  2015]   Senge,  Peter  M.  (1990),  The  FiTh  Discipline,  Doubleday/Currency   Meadows,  D.H.  (1997).  “Leverage  Points:  Places  to  Intervene  in  a  System”  <hIp://bit.ly/1rsFIdv>  [retrieved  5  April  2015]   Ing,  D.,  2014.  Systems  genera:ng  systems  -­‐  architecture  design  theory  by  Christopher  Alexander  (1968).  <hIp://bit.ly/1Eq8N3A>  [Accessed  April  5th  2015].      
  29. 29. Systems  Thinking   (analog)   web  web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  30. 30. PaUern  Languages  for  Sustainability  and  Social  Change  as  prac;ce           Collect  genera:ve  systems  and  Connect  praxis   Empower  collabora:ons,  weak  Enable  and  Share  other  than  local     The  most  widespread  and  best-­‐established  use  of  paIern  languages  is  in  computer  soTware  design,  which  can  serve  as  an  example  of  what   may  be  achieved  in  other  areas,  such  as  community  design.  PaIern  languages  are  common  in  fields  such  as  design  of  human-­‐computer   interfaces,  and  technology-­‐enhanced  learning,  a  highly  interdisciplinary  field  in  which  they  facilitate  communica:on  of  expert  knowledge   across  specialised  disciplines.  SoTware  paIern  language  collec:ons  have  become  mainstream  in  soTware  development  in  response  to  the   domain's  complexity  and  communica:on  issues.  Since  1995,  more  than  100  books  and  60  conferences  on  all  con:nents  have  yielded  3000+   soTware  paIerns.  However,  opera:ng  within  a  specialist  field  limits  the  use  of  paIern  languages  to  communica:on  among  experts,  and  does   not  take  advantage  of  their  poten:al  to  connect  diverse  user  communi:es  working  in  different  domains.  Some  applica:ons  stress  their   poten:al  as  tools  to  advance  democracy,  inclusion,  and  social  jus:ce,  notably  the  Public  Sphere  Project’s  work  on  paIern  languages  for  use   of  ICTs  as  emancipatory  tools.         In  terms  of  empowering  and  enabling,  most  social  change  paIern  languages  have  been  published  in  sta:c  print  media  that  do  not  allow  them   to  live  as  dynamic  en::es  undergoing  constant  revision  on  the  basis  of  experience.  Some  were  based  on  several  itera:ons  of  input  from   developer  and  user  communi:es  –  the  Public  Sphere  project's  paIern  language  for  emancipatory  use  of  ICTs,  for  example,  was  based  on   extensive  collabora:ve  processes  with  input  from  hundreds  of  individuals  worldwide  over  several  years.  Other  projects  using  online  formats   solicit  or  facilitate  con:nued  user  input.  The  Community  Pathways  website  invites  contribu:ons  of  new  paIerns.  The  Groupworks  PaIern   Language  group  seeks  to  cul:vate  ongoing  user  and  design  communi:es,  physical  and  virtual,  through  mee:ngs,  workshops  and  use  of  social   media,  all  feeding  back  into  design.       Pauwels,  S.  L.,  Hübscher,  C.,  Bargas-­‐Avila,  J.  A.,  &  Opwis,  K.  (2010).  Building  an  interac:on  design  paIern  language:  A  case  study.  Computers  in  Human  Behavior,  26(3),  452-­‐463.   Winters,  N.  &  Y.  Mor,  2008.  IDR:  A  par:cipatory  methodology  for  interdisciplinary  design  in  technology  enhanced  learning.  Computers  and  Educa:on  50:  579-­‐600.   Lea,  D.  (1994).  Christopher  Alexander:  An  introduc:on  for  object-­‐oriented  designers.  ACM  SIGSOFT  SoXware  Engineering  Notes  19(1):  39-­‐46.   Schuler,  D.,  2008.  Libera:ng  voices:  A  paIern  language  for  communica:on  revolu:on.  MIT  Press.   Seamon,  D.  (2007,  May).  Christopher  Alexander  and  a  Phenomenology  of  Wholeness.  In  Annual  MeeDng  of  the  Environmental  Design  Research  AssociaDon  (EDRA),  Sacramento,  CA.   Alexander,  C.,  2001-­‐2005.  The  Nature  of  Order.  Berkeley:  Center  for  Environmental  Structure.   Leitner,  H.,  2015.  PaIern  Theory.  Introduc:ons  and  Perspec:ves  on  the  Tracks  of  Christopher  Alexander.  HLS  SoTware.   Schuler,  D.,  2008.  LiberaDng  Voices:  a  pa]ern  language  for  communicaDon  revoluDon.  London:  MIT  Press  (and  hIp://publicsphereproject.org/).   hIp://groupworksdeck.org/.  [Accessed  April  5th  2015].    
  31. 31. PaIern  Language   (analog)   web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  32. 32. PLAST’s  innova;on  poten;al   Collect  genera:ve  systems,  Connect  praxis   Empower  ecosystems,  Enable  co-­‐nurturing,  Share  a  system     PLAST  innovates  by  providing  tools  and  methodologies  to  seek,  inves:gate  and  discuss  systemic  coherence   from  a  basis  of  diversity  in  perspec:ve  and  ac:on,  without  trying  to  achieve  unifica:on  (i.e.,  unity  in  values,   vision  and  approach).  It  seeks  to  empower  diversity  and  leverage  agency  wherever  it  may  be  found,  fostering   the  emergence  of  an  ecology  for  transforma:ve  ac:on  comprising  living  communi:es  of  place,  communi:es  of   prac:ce,  and  communi:es  of  knowledge  within  a  global  ac:on  space  who  maintain  a  shared  knowledge   commons  because  this  commons  resource  contributes  to  their  crea:on  of  value.  PLAST  is  conceived  as  an   ‘ac:on’  system  with  two  key  elements.  A  seman:c  structure  which  provides  a  bridge  across  languages  and   subcultures,  channeling  drives  for  change  and  leveraging  capaci:es  and  poten:als  for  ac:on  through  exchange   of  tacit  knowledge.  A  hermeneu:c  engine  which  provides  orienta:on  across  this  idea  and  ac:on  space,   fostering  learning  and  mutual  discovery  and  enabling  effec:ve  polycentric  solu:ons  that  collec:vely  apprehend   the  system  as  a  whole.    
  33. 33. PLAST’s  innova;on  poten;al   Collect  genera:ve  systems,  Connect  praxis   Empower  ecosystems,  Enable  co-­‐nurturing,  Share  a  system       PLAST’s  genera:ve  model  acts  upon  all  five  levers  in  a  mutually  reinforcing  way  to  mul:ply  effects  at  mul:ple  levels.  The   effec:veness  of  PLAST  relies  on  the  combina:on  of  all  of  them  to  generate  systemic  transforma:on:       Collect     It  is  expected  on  the  basis  of  early  feedback  from  PaIern  Language  and  social  change  prac::oners  that  PLAST  will  provide  a   compelling  aIractor  to  par:cipants  to  load  their  exis:ng  paIern  languages  and  best  prac:ces  into  the  system  and  to  create  new   paIerns  and  paIern  languages  using  the  system,  suppor:ng  the  collec:on  of  whole  systems  of  sustainable  solu:ons  and   possibili:es  to  act  upon.   The  immediate  opening  of  pathways  to  further  knowledge  will  draw  par:cipant  into  the  system  to  explore  related  knowledge.   The  more  know-­‐how  par:cipants  provide  to  the  system  the  more  know-­‐how  they  will  find  opens  up  to  them  to  discover.  For  this   reason  we  expect  the  system  will  collect  a  great  deal  of  knowledge  from  par:cipants  in  diverse  domains.       Connect     PLAST  will  be  designed  for  op:mal  ‘self  connec:on’  of  knowledge  and  prac:ce  using  mul:-­‐dimensional  seman:c  interconnec:on   of  paIerns.  PLAST  will  connect  the  prac:ce  of  diverse  communi:es  and  areas  of  sustainability  driving  social  innova:on  by   opening  up  explora:on  pathways  between  them.     By  accelera:ng  connec:vity,  PLAST  creates  communica:on  bridges  between  par:cipants  in  adjacent  domains  which  are  likely  to   foster  produc:ve  cross-­‐domain  encounters  of  kinds  known  to  spark  innova:on.  By  opening  up  channels  between  prac:ces,   PLAST’s  design  promotes  the  circula:on  of  knowledge  and  energy  towards  ac:on.  
  34. 34. PLAST’s  innova;on  poten;al   Collect  genera:ve  systems,  Connect  praxis   Empower  ecosystems,  Enable  co-­‐nurturing,  Share  a  system     Empower     PLAST  will  provide  change  agents  with  tools  to  ar:culate  and  share  knowledge,  explore  new  territories  of  prac:ces,  grow  capacity   to  connect  and  learn,  and  relevant  connec:ons,  and  deepen  their  understanding  of  the  challenges  they  confront.  Bringing  diverse   capabili:es  into  contact  generates  more  opportuni:es  to  act,  which  in  turn  increases  capability  in  a  feedback  loop.  Learning  and   ac:on  research  are  embedded  in  the  design  to  expand  awareness  and  capacity  for  ac:on  and  therefore  agency  deeply  within  and   across  domains.  By  mobilizing  and  empowering  the  diversity  of  its  users  PLAST  creates  opportuni:es  for  poly-­‐centric  and  mul:-­‐ level  social  impact  throughout  the  ecosystem.       Enable     PLAST  is  structured  as  a  co-­‐created  knowledge  commons  that  enables  the  pursuit  of  a  change  driven  prac:ce  upon  which   par:cipants  can  find  resources  to  beIer  achieve  their  own  vision/mission  and  generate  their  own  livelihood.  The  high  leverage,  in   terms  of  return  on  effort,  ensures  that  par:cipants  will  keep  the  knowledge  they  depend  on  alive  and  circula:ng,  and  the  tools   they  rely  on  at  the  state-­‐of-­‐the-­‐art  level,  co-­‐nurturing  the  system  that  enables  them.       Share     As  a  peer  produced  commons,  used  and  co-­‐nurtured  by  a  diversity  of  communi:es,  sense  of  ownership  is  not  just  about  a  co-­‐ produced  output  or  a  shared  process,  it  is  over  a  whole  enabling  system.  The  ability  to  hold  and  maintain  a  local  repository  and   integrate  this  repository  into  a  commons  repository  ensures  con:nuity  of  ownership  even  through  local  distribu:on  of  the  data.    
  35. 35. PLAST   web  web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  
  36. 36. web   Maps   Encyclopedia  UIA   Wiser  Earth   Wikipedia   Specialized  Wikis   Linux    on  Git   PLAST   PaIern  Language   Systems  Thinking   web   Collect   Inventory   Connect   Poten;al   Empower   Agency   Enable   Value   Share   Sense  of  Ownership   Instances   Systems   Networks   Co-­‐nurture   Provide   Co-­‐produce   web  

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