Viewing posts tagged sustainability

Knowmads' Western Asia Summer Course

The Knowmads (NL) are launching an interesting social entrepreneurship experience in Western Asia. I’m sharing their release in its entirety because I believe this is a worthwhile learning and praxis opportunity for developing Knowmads:

Theme: Social Entrepreneurship
This summer course is all about experiencing the Knowmads way of working. We will work with you, in a team of minimal 15 and maximum 25 internationals, on a project in Israel and/or Palestine. The project we are going to create will connect to youth, community and entrepreneurship and will have an impact for you, for the community and for the world. We call it a win-win-win project.

The 4 weeks
The project takes in total four weeks. In the first week we will get to know each other and investigate each other’s talents. By doing this we create a team that will really rock the boat. The second week we will start with creative and innovative idea development for the project. The third and fourth week we will work together on the project and make the things happen planned in the first two weeks.

Who are we looking for?
We are looking for outstanding, creative and highly motivated young people willing to undertake an entrepreneurial challenge. There is not a specific or ideal type of candidate for this course. You have to be willing to work with your head, heart and hands.

What does it cost?
The price of the course is Euro 2000,-. This is inclusive all the material, travelling in Israel/Palestine and housing. This price is exclusive travelling to (and from) Tel Aviv, food and drinks.

Why to choose Knowmads Summer Course?

  • The course is a highly specialised programme, with a strong focus on a real life case.
  • There are networking opportunities with entrepreneurs / companies / municipalities / NGO’s, also after the programme
  • You have the chance for transferring successful ideas to your own country.
  • You can challenge yourself and be coached in this
  • There is didactic quality guaranteed by Knowmads; 3?6 Knowmads will facilitate the course.
  • You will work in an International atmosphere in a truly multicultural environment.

How to sign up?

  • Apply before the 24th of June 2010.
  • Before the 26th of June we will confirm your registration; we will only start our course with a minimum of 15 applicants.


  • The spoken and written language of the course is English
  • During the course we will work six days a week
  • The tuition fee needs to be paid before the 10th of July. We will provide details later.

Info: send an e-mail to or call 00 31 6 814 90 700.

Wanted: 30 Knowmads

Remember Knowmads in Society 3.0? Something amazing is brewing in Europe. And, they’re looking for thirty candidates from around the world.

Knowmads is a new school for the world of tomorrow, starting in January 2010 in The Netherlands. After two years of learning with and from KaosPilots (International School for New Business Design and Social Innovation) in Rotterdam, a couple of entrepreneurs will join together in Knowmads-land. KaosPilots Netherlands transformed and the body of thought is very much alive!

Their purpose is to create a life-long learning community that starts with a one–year program and the possibility to add another six months after that. They work from the principle of a team-setting based on Action Learning; meaning that they work with their heads, hearts and hands. They believe in action, creativity, fun, diversity, social innovation and sustainability in real life assignments.

The program consists of the following elements:

  • Entrepreneurship and New Business Design
  • Personal Leadership
  • Creativity and Marketing
  • Sustainability and Social Innovation

The real life assignments for the students will be realized by collaborations with several international business partners and organisations. With this they will create constant win-win-win situations. And, the student themselves are stakeholders and owners of the school.

They are looking for thirty knowmads from around the world to join the inaugural team, with a deadline of November 20 December 18.

For more information, stories or applications check or write to: /

“Welcome home!”

Creating and dismantling the library of the future

Inside Higher Ed writes that, Daniel Greenstein, vice provost for academic planning and programs at the University of California System predicts:

The university library of the future will be sparsely staffed, highly decentralized, and have a physical plant consisting of little more than special collections and study areas.

Particularly over the past decade, librarians have shown considerable futures thinking into what their institutions might become. One visible example is the Minneapolis Central Library, designed by Cesar Pelli. The building is designed not only to be more green and sustainable, but also to be converted into a structure that can serve a different purpose. The floors, for example, are removable and reconfigurable, allowing the library to adapt to needs and purposes that do not yet exist.

So, it comes as no surprise that Ithaka hosted a talk on sustainability and the future of university libraries –likely creating some unease among librarians. Inside Higher Ed elaborates more on Greenstein’s vision:

“We’re already starting to see a move on the part of university libraries… to outsource virtually all the services [they have] developed and maintained over the years,” Greenstein said. Now, with universities everywhere still ailing from last year’s economic meltdown, administrators are more likely than ever to explore the dramatic restructuring of library operations.

Within the decade, he said, groups of universities will have shared print and digital repositories where they store books they no longer care to manage. “There are national discussions about how and to what extent we can begin to collaborate institutionally to share the cost of storing and managing books,” he said. “That trend should keeping continuing as capital funding is scarce, as space constraints are severe, especially on urban campuses — and, frankly, as funding needs to flow into other aspects of the academic program.”

Read the full Inside Higher Ed article…

Going green: Our post-industrial imperative

Peter Senge, Bryan Smith, and Nina Kruschwitz wrote an article in Booz Allen Hamilton Inc.‘s strategy+business on transforming business thinking to combat climate change.

We cannot meet the 80-20 challenge under the present industrial system. Success will require a sea change in the prevailing kinds of energy we use, cars we drive, buildings we live and work in, cities we design, and ways we move both people and goods around the world. It will require other changes that no one can yet imagine. That’s why basic innovation is so important: Humans must rapidly rethink and rebuild their infrastructure, technology, organizations, and approach to working with nature. Meanwhile, the growing recognition of this 80-20 challenge [to generate an 80 percent reduction of worldwide emissions in 20 years] — among scientists, businesspeople, and citizens — is itself a signal that the industrial age bubble has reached its limits, just as general recognition of the unsustainability of many Internet businesses preceded the bursting of the dot-com bubble of the 1990s.

Indeed, the industrial age is over (at least in industrialized nations), and the world is moving toward a socioeconomic system that favors knowledge and innovation over industrial outputs.  Global climate change is creating an imperative for ecologically sound, innovative transformations of industries and society.  The idea of “business as usual” is no longer economically sound or socially acceptable.

When we talk about schools going green, we often focus on energy efficient classrooms, lunchroom waste reductions, and conservation of office supplies.  Far less frequently, we talk about helping students build a capacity to innovate toward creating ecologically-sound solutions.  We’re producing students that will be successful in 19th or 20th century assembly line jobs, but not for roles they will need to assume in a knowledge- and innovation-based society.

No more business as usual means we can no longer do education as usual.

With this in mind, it’s perhaps appropriate to round off Cobo‘s list of skills for knowledge workers with a final point: be responsible. These are all items that schools should work on developing in the communities they serve:

  1. Not restricted to a specific age.
  2. Highly engaged, creative, innovative, collaborative and motivated.
  3. Uses information and develops knowledge in changing workplaces (not tied to an office).
  4. Inventive, intuitive, and able to know things and produce ideas.
  5. Capable of creating socially constructed meaning and contextually reinvent meanings.
  6. Rejects the role of being an information custodian and associated rigid ways of organizing information.
  7. Network maker, always connecting people, ideas, organizations, etc.
  8. Possesses an ability to use many tools to solve many different problems.
  9. High digital literacy.
  10. Competence to solve unknown problems in different contexts.
  11. Learning by sharing, without geographical limitation.
  12. Highly adaptable to different contexts/environments.
  13. Aware of the importance to provide open access to information.
  14. Interest in context and the adaptability of information to new situations.
  15. Capable of unlearning quickly, and always bringing in new ideas.
  16. Competence to create open and flat knowledge networks.
  17. Learns continuously (formally and informally) and updates knowledge.
  18. Constantly experiments new technologies (especially the collaborative ones).
  19. Not afraid of failure.
  20. Oriented toward building positive social, economic, and ecological futures.

Did you ever wonder?

Bill Farren, a technology integration facilitator in the Dominican Republic, created a response to Karl Fisch’s Did you know? slides:

Farren asks:

How is preparing students to enter an economic and industrial system that is at war with itself preparing them for the future? Wouldn’t we be better off educating people so that they can improve their chances of living well on a planet with a finite biosphere? Shouldn’t the purpose of an education have to do with living well, not with supporting economies?

In other words, in an education world dominated by measurement regimes, are we missing something?

Makes me wonder…