Using developmental evaluation to look at the patterns of our collective inquiry

Hosts: Yve Susskind and Chris Corrigan

Participants: Jerry Millhon, Jackie Hai, Michelle Bach-Coulibaly, Marla Crockett, Michelle Fernier, Peggy Holman

We began by giving a bit of an overview about Developmental Evaluation which is an approach to understanding what is emerging.

Then we gave ourselves an assignment: to learn about the patterns of inquiry that are present in our midst. We are curious about this because it points to what this group, community and movement are asking about, what they are curious about and what they know they DON’T know.

Our groups split up and we spent 20 minutes collecting all the questions we could find from all of the material that has been produced over the past two days. We then placed all of those questions in the centre of our group and began searching for patterns and themes. What came up was the following:

▪ Connecting with Others
▪ Reimagining journalism
▪ Self Care and Support
▪ Journalist Community Intersection
▪ Narratives and Stories
▪ Teaching Engagement
▪ Business Modesl
▪ Self Care and Support
▪ Craft of engagement
▪ Engaging Tragedy
▪ Audience

We then began to reflect on what we were seeing. Here are the raw notes of that reflection:

• Inward to outward and outward to inward looking,,,
• How we reimagine journalism? We are discovering how to use imagination to take us to the next level. How does imagination help us to reinvent journalism.
• Engaging with yourself so you can do this work of engagement…across the spectrum, of engagements.
• We have really spoken about the question of our bigger purpose and if what we does matters and to what end? Who gets to do what we do? We are asking about the intrinsic motivations for what we are doing?
• There is a lot of first person question about me
• Second person inquiry about the journalists and the subject. Larger frame about our impact in the world
• How do these clusters help us create a field guid, understand what engagement is.
• With a field guide we are starting from a perspective that it’s our job to do the work. We are making an assumption that this product is something that is needed.
• We are curious about figuring out how to do this work more effectively? How can I be a better….journalist, listener. Aspirational quality to this work.
• And if this is a movement, how can we sustain it and bring it to scale.
• The work we are doing can’t just be about us.
• There is a desire for tools and guidance to help do this work better.
• Why are we engaging…? We need to have a fundamental rethinking of the purpose of our work…if it is about democracy, journalism might not be the way to get us there?
• Journalists want to be doing something different than maintaining and sustaining the structures of journalism. Their work in the world is creating a craving to do something bigger. Journalism can be a part of that, but it is not necessaruly the pathway to that.
• What are the implications of this perspective for Teaching/Learning, technical skills, business models, SEEING community, etc?
• Maybe its not just about journalism and community…there is a whole new role which is the ambassador between worlds. What is that role?

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