Emergent reflections

A space where I can digest some thinking through the writing process - liminal, emergent and reflective.

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Day 1 of the 8th World Congress

I fly out of Canberra with flu: body aching, mind mush, heartstrung from toddler and husband...

...arrive Melbourne: sun pushing through the grey clouds - at least the wind has stopped!

Soft pillows! Crash.

Day 1 dawns at the 8th World Congress

Morning spark - feels promising. Tentative awakening - stretching body.

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Using web services to revisit conference themes: a test case

Last time I blogged, I mentioned again the efforts of Beth Kanter. Since then I've been snowed under with a major project at work, and have really just "resurfaced"!

One activity I was recently involved in was a conference, the Moodle Moot AU. Moodle Moots are run around the globe and provide an opportunity to show and tell experiences of using the open source online learning platform, Moodle. The one I attended was held in Melbourne just a couple of weeks ago, at the Convention Centre in Southbank (a very nice conference venue I must say!).

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How non-profits can use social media

I'd like to introduce you to Beth's Blog. Beth blogs about how non-profit organisations can make the most of social media. I won't go through Beth's blog in too much detail but here's some highlights that might see you reading more on Beth's blog.

1. You might want to start with her bio on her Wikispace. Often our connections with others begin simply with knowing a bit more about them.

2. Then you might want to see what she writes about; for example, this post explores a recent survey about non-profits and their adoption of social media.

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Australian Social Innovation Camp

I came across this in my web search last week and have been reading the ideas and blog posts to see what it is all about.

The 'camp' is an open conference that is happening 5th to 7th March 2010. The Aussie Social Innovation Exchange (ASIX) is a member of the global Social Innovation eXchange network. But what IS it?

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Moments: Canberra ballooning and the torch relay

Crossposted from Ed(ge)ucation design...

My first views of this historic and somewhat seesawing day.

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Conference planning: thoughts about 'going green'

Had a wonderful discussion with Jeanette, Susan and Stephen today in preparation for the 2008 Australian conference! This will make up our conference planning team, together with the Events team here at CIT. We're working on a theme which concerns the 'Whole Person'. This from our submission:

"The whole person: sustainable futures in living, learning and working." The underpinning framework of the theme is the exploration of the encroachment of economic rationalist approaches to our work and life and its dominance in areas such as health and education particularly. This is often pursued at the expense of community development and wellbeing of individuals and families, no to mention workplaces and our educational institutions.

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Conference planning: reflections on process and participation

**crossposted from Ross' blog... I made these comments over at Ross' blog and thought I'd repost here so I can continue to reflect on our conference planning at CIT, over the next few months... Di also makes some valid points from her own conference experiences...

Your thoughts on previous
conferences, Di, remind me of my experiences in Adelaide last year. I
felt 'freer' at this conference as I had not planned to present
anything (in fact I had not planned to go until the last minute!), so
felt I could 'drift' between sessions, conversations and workshops, as
they appealed to me. However, in so doing, I was not quite as
'committed' - or perhaps invested is a better word... and thus apart
from one or two sessions that peaked my interest, I probably didn't get
out of it as much as if I was engaged in a diferent role (or
something). Still there is much power in observation I think, and it
did give me an insight into the operations of a conference.

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2008: Year of the Rat - with a bang!

Wow! What an amazing start to the year! Phew, there's been a lot going on - ALARA-wise and life generally :o)

I'm excited by the ALARA visioning process that has been underway for a couple of months now. I'm looking forward to the meeting coming up in March to discuss the visioning process in more detail.

The April edition of the ALAR journal is underway, with reviews to be undertaken of articles, most of which have come from our 2007 national conference (I recall that conference with great fondness too).

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Demo: attaching files to blog posts

Can't see it here? Then see it here
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Conference notes: Opening plenary panel

Day 1 plenary panel discussion: What does action learning/action research mean in different contexts? Sharing perspectives...

Joan Gibbs and Uncle George talked first and Uncle said along the lines of 'if you talk too much (or too loud) you frighten things away (he was referring to taking young kids out into the bush to learn and that you can't talk because you frighten away the animals, etc that you're there to see.

Great metaphor (and reality) for our research - stop talking and start listening! When you do you can touch things, eat things, look at and interact with things; it's a two-way (are multi-way) process. This 'listening' point carried on through the conference proper too.

Ernie and Ricky also picked this up with Ernie's point that you just keep yarnin and you listen to the people.

Mick added his cooperative research viewpoint where

  • the research is what people want (a focus point)
  • that it transfers into practice (accountability)
  • is about capacity development (it's about US)

When we talk about things like the 'bottom line' for govt depts and business, etc, we need to also be talking about investing in commitment, where return on investment plus time amounts to the outcomes of that investment.

Aunty Coral next talked about the work she and other grannies are doing in a Grannie's Group, which is a volunteer group of women who look out for their children and their grandchildren and great grandchildren, to teach kids to steer away from drugs and alcohol. The grannies are facilitators and are investing in their future by looking after their kids. Inspirational!

I think it was Uncle George who said that we also need to acknowledge the intellectual property rights of Aboriginal peoples. To state their place and their voice in literature, reports, news, discussions, forums, conferences and other avenues where an Indigenous knowing is professed in some way.

One point I liked from Ernie was that we are research facilitators and while as academics we may have all this information in our heads, we need to do what Denzin and others call 'bracketing' where we contain our theoretical views and let others speak on their own terms. And, as Mick said, we need to get the big things down to eyeball chunks, otherwise the issues seem too big to deal with.

I've only captured some things and only the things I heard (from my place in the world) from the panel members; but it gave me a sense of the themes and talking points leading into the concurrent sessions that followed. A 'narrative arc' had been set, more than disparate conversations loosley joined (as I expect the experience of walking straight into concurrent sessions might be). I was left with a space to think, or, as another participant said, a breathing space...

...so I'll leave this here to give you some space to breath some life into these thoughts from your context and perspective...

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