It was the last day yesterday, and not a very easy day to manage for many reasons.  But we managed to write a proposal to the 2012 World Appreciative Inquiry Conference in Ghent, Belgium in April 2012.  I felt quite satisfied with our attempt.  What do you think?

Metafari in Tanzania is a six day journey that starts in the chaos of Dar es Salaam. The following morning it moves the participants to the diversity of the waterhole in Mikumi. After two nights the journey continues into the dream of Tanga International Competence Center in Tanga, Tanzani, founded on the ideas of AI. It explores the highs and lows of the mangrove tidal swamp, before journeying to the Maasai village of Nanyogie for a village dialogue and an overnight stay where we in the morning gathers around the termite mound for a conversation around

The Metafari project started around a web site in Sweden and a conversation about how to present the web site to the target groups. What could it be like?

-Maybe it should be like a waterhole? This initiated a vivid discussion about the waterhole.
What is a waterhole? What happens around the waterhole? Who comes to the waterhole? What are the elements of a well functioning waterhole?

The questions created wonderful conversations, and ideas about other exciting metaphors. The coral reef. A termite mound. The tidal landscape.

-Would it be possible to arrange Metaphor Safari? The dream got real in the meeting between Ruth Nesje, founder of Tanga International Competence Centre in Tanzania, and Leif Josefsson. After a first Metafari, Ruth introduced Leif to the Maasai community motivator Rafael Ole Moono, and the Metafari in it’s current form took shape.
One foundation of the Metafari is a belief that we are going through a paradigm shift, driven by technology. It happens in society, organizations, social life. Everywhere. The paradox is that although this process is driven by machines, connected through Internet, it is transforming our lives enabling us to connect to each other’s in new ways – as living systems.

Metafari is an invitation to an Open Space, to a co-constructed journey of images and conversations, challenging our assumptions, guiding us to explore new language, new metaphors for leadership, and our lives. The environment becomes our teacher. The design of the journey helps us to connect within, opening up ourselves for unlearning, enabling for new learning. This is what the Meta-journey is about.

If our proposal is accepted, Rafael ole Moono and Leif Josefsson will guide the participants through a Metafari in the room, using video from the waterhole, the Mangrove tidal swamp and the Maasai boma. We will introduce the participants to our story about the Metafari, and we will then let them explore a partial Metafari in the room

The Metafari in Tanzania is about connecting within and between communities, but also self to others. It is about exploring generative dialogue. The diversity in the group, between the Metafari guides, and the places creates an open environment for reflection and for the creation of new images and metaphors.

Generativity is the core of design, but not on an academic level. We are in a journey of new discovery and not knowing.

So what do you think?  Would you like to join our workshop?

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November 2011
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