Greetings from the Transformations 2017 Conference here in Dundee, Scotland.
A group from our SUSPLACE research team are hosting an experimental workshop addressing the question: How can creativity be evoked and applied in designing transformative sustainability initiatives?
(artwork by Malin Bäckman)
Here is the official description:
In this action hub we will explore the value of arts-based approaches and techniques through experiencing and experimenting. Participants will learn pragmatic tools for enhancing the transformative potential of sustainability initiatives via creative practices. Locally-rooted and initiated transformations of social ecological systems are seen as a vital path towards sustainability. The design and communication of effective place-based strategies often require imagination, creativity, and innovation. Creative thinking and acting, however, can be limited by group think, culturally habituated ways of thinking and perceiving, and constraining thoughts and emotions such as fear, anxiety, and self-criticism. This workshop is about experiencing how arts-based approaches can open spaces of possibility in the social imaginary, evoking ‘transformative’ mindsets and creating the conditions for lateral thinking and synchronicity.
We welcome researchers, engaged citizens, artists, policy-makers, or anyone who is interested in reflecting on and contributing to the development of experimental arts-based methods. A team of researchers from SUSPLACE will facilitate the process, drawing from Theory U and Appreciative Inquiry methodologies. The content will be inspired by themes of imaginative leadership, sensitization to complexity, capacities for caring, social learning, and sense of place. Participants will move between small group work, paired reflections, and collective contributions as they work on design challenges taken from existing initiatives. Be prepared for an energetic, fast-paced, interactive session focused on evoking and applying creativity and metaphorical thinking.