16 Jun

The Sustainable Development Goals as a Blueprint for Humanity

Sustainable_Development_Goals_Logo

Image result for clive wilsonClive Wilson is author of “Designing the Purposeful organization – how to inspire business performance beyond boundaries”, and is currently writing “Designing the Purposeful World – the Sustainable Development Goals as a Blueprint for Humanity”

 

 

I was inspired and intrigued when I read Michael Schluter’s Relational Thinking Dialogue “Three Relational Concerns about the Sustainable Development Goals”.  I was inspired by the fact that renowned thinkers such as Michael are evaluating the SDGs from a range of different perspectives.  I was also particularly inspired by the specific assessment of how relationships play out (or not) in the delivery of the goals.  The more people that take the time to explore, consider and discuss such views, the more we will come to realise the power of the goals and what else needs to happen in support of them.

My personal approach to the SDGs is probably different to that of many.  The moment I read the published working group draft of the SDGs in 2014, my heart skipped a beat.  All I saw as I read the paper, was a vision that totally corresponded with my own.  The key here is the word “vision”.  The words in the draft goals provided stimulus to my imagination, the vision was what arose in my mind’s eye.  This is what inspired me.

Naturally, the goals have been worked through and converted into detailed narrative, sub-goals, targets and measures, which are vital to forming a cohesive global programme but as I explain in “Designing the Purposeful Organization”, results are simply the measure of our progress to the vision.  They are rarely what inspires us.  We are principally inspired by four things: a sense of purpose; a compelling vision; a felt sense of success; and the knowledge that our talents are being deployed in support of something meaningful.  In this respect the SDGs worked for me and immediately caused me to commit to supporting and celebrating their delivery in the best way I could.

Working on the hypothesis that there would be others in the world who would be equally inspired, I set out to engage with the world in four principle ways.  I established a branch of the United Nations Association focused on the SDGs; I established a Facebook page to support the SDGs and celebrate progress; I started to write my new book “Designing the Purposeful World”; and I started to engage with groups of people from all walks of life (so far in Europe, the US and Asia).

So far I have engaged with thousands of people aged from seven to seventy and in groups from five to five hundred.  I always begin these workshops with a “mind-journey” to 2030 and ask those involved to envisage the world they would like to see (realistically) in 2030 and be happy to pass to future generations.  The amazing thing is that to date at every workshop, what people see is entirely compatible with the SDGs.  I then (and not before) show them the SDGs and they are always amazed how “their world” fits with the goals.  I then simply ask them which goals particularly resonate and in what way.  This is where individuality plays out.  We all see 2030 differently but always in line with the goals.  They leave inspired to take action which they share before leaving.

The beauty of the goals is that they are far from limiting.  At headline level, they apply to the whole world, not just the developing world, even though some of the targets are clearly oriented that way.  And, whilst the specifics may drive specific actions at the formal programme level for the UN and national governments, they certainly don’t need to constrain other players, such as organisations, communities and individuals.  I encourage people to follow the inspiration that a better world for 2030 provides to them and those around them.  Naturally, if a specific goal inspires them, I’m sure they’ll find out more about the details, but I trust and encourage that they won’t allow this to constrain their imagination and innovation.

It is wonderful that Michael Schluter and his colleagues are emphasising the real need to strengthen and exploit relationships in a plethora of ways to make the world a better place and I wish them every success in doing so.

03 May

Thought Leadership Day: The Relational Agenda for Transforming Society

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15th September 2017
St Catharine’s College
£100 – Partner
£120 – Non-partner

Government and business are rapidly evolving due to the social impact of information and communication technologies. The focus on historical data to predict future performance and risk factors, for example, are increasingly irrelevant as the pace of change accelerates. Time pressures on managers continue to increase due to access to information and communication possibilities, so that relationships within and between organisations ironically are coming under greater and greater pressure.

Relational Thinking is a social philosophy which seeks to understand better the nature and value of relationships, how relationships can be measured and how a relational focus can improve performance of companies, schools, public and private sector organisations and government itself. Relational Thinking also speaks to job creation, the Brexit decision, the future of Europe, international peacebuilding and global finance.

What changes if relationships become an end as well as just a means? Our thought leadership day will make it possible for participants to access this new framework of thinking and measurement, and the way it is being applied already across a wide range of sectors and organisations. If you have any questions, please email Joshua Hemmings at j.hemmings@relationalresearch.org

Register here

The Programme

Participants will not be tied down to one track but will be able to go to sessions from both tracks. The sessions will be designed to be highly participative so that those joining us for the day have the opportunity to contribute their thoughts and reflections.

8:30 – 9:00 Registration and Coffee
9:00 – 9:10 Introduction to the dayBeris Gwynne
9:10 – 9:45 Where is the Relational Thinking movement going?Dr Michael Schluter CBE
9:45 – 10:45 Plenary: Introduction to Measuring Stakeholder RelationshipsTim Young (TBC) and Clive Parry

 and

 Chronomics

John Ashcroft and Michael Schluter

10:45 – 11:30 Coffee 

Track 1

Track 2 

11:30 – 12:30

Relational Companies

Speakers TBC

Relational Schools

Dr Rob Loe

12:30 – 1:30 Lunch
1:30 – 2:30

Relational Finance and

Job- Creation

Tim Jones

Relational Europe

David Lee

2:30 – 3:00 Coffee
3:00 – 4:00

Relational Government

John Ashcroft, Michael Trend and David Strang

Relational Peacebuilding

Beris Gwynne and Jeremy Ive

4:00 – 5:00

Plenary: Feedback and Panel Discussion: Next Steps to Grow the     

Movement

 

 

16 Mar

Using Relational Analytics to Understand, Measure, Manage and Improve Relationships – Course in Geneva

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Relational Metrics is a statistically validated way of measuring relationship quality.

Using it, you can address organisational relationships that are hurting profitability, efficiency and productivity anywhere in your organisation’s ecosystem.

Relational Analytics is running a 2-day course in Geneva, 28-29 March, which provides the basis for full accreditation as a licensed user of Relational Metrics and enables you to join the community of practice.

You can Register here.

 

Programme

DAY 1: Relational Management & Relational Metrics

Michael Schluter introduces the key ideas around measurement of relationships in organisations. He and his team show how these methods enable more effective analysis and provide data allowing organisations to enhance performance and meet social and relationship reporting requirements.

DAY 2: Enhancing Performance

For you to sharpen your ideas for implementing Relational Metrics in your organisation, the team will review the use of the Relational Metrics in assignments across multiple sectors. Particular attention will be paid to the potential for Relational Analytics to increase the effectiveness of multi-stakeholder partnerships in achieving development and humanitarian goals.

TIME/PLACE /BOOKING

9:00 to 17:00 daily

28-29 March 2017

Impact Hub, Rue de Fendt 1

1201 Geneva

Non-residential

Price

Full Price CHF 1,200 (Government/Corporate)

CHF 800 (NGO),

CHF 600 (individual)

Includes lunch/refreshments

SPEAKERS

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BERIS GWYNNE was an ambassador for the Australian Foreign Office before representing one of the world’s largest NGOs to the UN in Geneva.  She is also founder of Incitāre – a platform to support accelerated achievement of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals.

TEAM-Michael

Dr. MICHAEL SCHLUTER CBE is an economist, former World Bank consultant, and social entrepreneur. He co-originated the Relational Proximity® Framework. He is founder of Relational Thinking and Chairman of Relational Analytics.

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JOSHUA ROSS holds a Ph.D from Cambridge and taught mathematics at two Chinese universities before chairing the Regional Board of an International NGO. He is responsible for the Relational Analytics technology platform (RAMP).

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VINCENT NEATE is the CEO of Relationship Capital Strategies Ltd., and has been active in the field of corporate responsibility for over twenty years, latterly as the partner in charge of the Sustainability Practice at KPMG.

23 May

Achieving of SDGs only by challenging existing paradigms

SDGs report - picture of child tap water

The implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) will only be possible by challenging the existing economic paradigm,” said Ms Beris Gwynne, the Head of Programmes of the Relational Thinking Network (RTN), as she introduced the subject in Geneva during a Roundtable Dialogue on the issue on 20 April 2016. “There is a need for a quantum shift in the way we do business if we are serious about achieving the SDGs and all that they entail.”

In preparation the main presenter, Dr Michael Schluter, the founder and Chair of the Relational Thinking Network, wrote a relational critique of the SDGs trying to address the ‘missing dimension’ and this roundtable was meant to enliven the conversation around the subject. He highlighted three main concerns namely what he perceives to be an individualistic underpinning of the SDGs, as well as questions around the definition of ‘poverty’ and the use of the language of development.

Three respondents gave their feedback on Schluters paper and presentation and their views of the SDGs and the challenges around implementation and monitoring. They were Mark Halle, of the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), Professor Lichia Yiu-Saner, President of the Centre for Socio-Eco-Nomic Development (CSEND), and Dr Samuel Gayi.

The full report can be downloaded here: ReportSDGsRoundTable-FINAL.

You can download Dr. Michael Schluter’s paper here: SDGs paper 22 4 2016 – FINAL2

Photo: Riccardo Mayer

04 Dec

The Relational Lens: Understanding, managing and measuring stakeholder relationships

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We’re excited to announce the forthcoming publication by Cambridge University Press of a new book called ‘The Relational Lens: Understanding, managing and measuring stakeholder relationships’

The book spells out in some detail the 5 dimensions of Relational Proximity and provides an academic exploration of their use and usefulness. The Relational Proximity Framework® is a groundbreaking approach to transforming organizational performance. It measures the amount of relational access individuals have to one another – access determined by formal or informal rules of engagement established either by the stakeholders’ own behavioural habits or by company practice and policy. By using it, management can address organization-wide relationship problems and strengthen the relational infrastructure on which productivity depends.

Here is a small excerpt from the book:

The premise of the book, and of the tools and courses that complement it, is simple. It is that success – in business, in community building, in public service, in life – depends upon getting relationships right; that leadership (in whatever context and at whatever level it is exercised) depends upon the ability to build and sustain relationships; and that real change starts by realising that relationships are both measurable and a basis on which to improve performance. It is possible to create the conditions within which people are more likely to form and conduct effective relationships, and to approach relationships in organisations in ways that enable constructive discussion and actionable solutions.

The book is written by four authors, John Ashcroft, Roy Childs, Alison Myers and Michael Schluter, and is due for publication mid 2016.

24 Nov

Thinking about relationships in health

ICON-RHealthcare

CAMBRIDGE/YORK – It’s becoming more and more clear how important strong relationships are for the quality of healthcare. A conference  early next year, organised by one of our member organizations Whole Systems Partnership, is exploring the role that relationships play in health and care policy and strategy.

The conference, entitled Thinking about Relationships in Health, will take place over 24 hours on Thursday 12th/Friday 13th February, 2015, at the National Railway Museum in York.  It will be led by Dr. Jonathan Shapiro, lead academic and Chair of a large UK Mental Health Trust, and Peter Lacey,  Director of Whole Systems Partnership.  It will also include contributions from other visiting speakers and Whole Systems Partnership Research Associate, Dr. Paul Grimshaw, who has recently joined WSP through the Knowledge Transfer Partnership programme in association with the University of Leeds School of Healthcare Studies.

For more information, or to book online, click here.