Participation Lab Next Level (2019-2020)

The desire arose within the CHE to form a working community that shows what it yields when concrete social issues are approached from a unity consciousness and an integrated vision. The first step in this direction was the development of a Next Level Participation Lab. In the Netherlands we like to see people take control of their own lives and make a contribution to society according to their own ability. We would like to strengthen the strength of the community and be able to respond flexibly to a rapidly changing environment. At the same time, it turns out to be difficult to really put control in the hands of the community. There is no lack of initiative, but many good initiatives are frustrated by blockages in the interaction with other parties. This often involves money, power and an outdated operating system. This old system is based on a paradigm that sees everything separately and tries to build a society from those separate parts. This has worked well for a long time, but is no longer sufficient for today's complex challenges. In the Next Level Participation Lab, we consider the deeper forces in the new interplay at the local level and what is needed to make a difference at a profound level. We bring together experienced people from different roles and domains to create a rich field of inspiration. We work with concrete case studies from practice. For this first prototype of the Participation Lab Next Level, we formed one of the 300 teams in the Societal Transformation Lab of the Presencing Institute of Otto Scharmer (Theory U). Our team focused on new governance models in the interplay at a local level in the Netherlands (Governance & Democracy). They examined the concrete cases that participants submitted during the lab with stakeholders and then they tried out what works.

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