‘Scale up’ your empathy, not your ‘pilot initiative’


I always felt there was a problem with scaling up. And this week it dawned on me much more clearly what the problem was. For a while, I thought that while the activities of a given initiative could not easily be scaled up, perhaps the conditions in which they were taking place could be scaled […]

Sailing along ‘pattern currents’ in the sea of change


  Change is so ubiquitous and, as Torben Rick would say, “constant change is the new normal” to such an extent that for networked individuals, change is hardly surprising though it is still discomforting. Where, then, are the spaces to catch your breath and find some kind of ‘structure’ or insights to make sense of change?  There […]

We are a system, you cannot I-solate yourself, so surf and co-create the wave of our collective grace


This could be one of the fundamentals of this blog: it takes two to tango and we are all part of a (same) system. The ‘I’ has a much lesser role to play to in our WElcoming world than we perhaps like to admit. According to Eric Weiner’s study about the geography of bliss, happiness […]

Interview with Krishan Bheenick (CTA) – KM, systems thinking and the backlash of knowledge sharing


Following the global consultation of CIARD (Coherence in Information about Agricultural Research for Development) in May 2013, I had the pleasure of meeting Krishan Bheenick, Senior programme coordinator knowledge management at CTA (Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation) on his take about KM and where it’s headed. Here is the transcript of that interview. […]

Feel complexity, think ‘Tradeoffs’ and follow the flow


This is THE shift we all need to accomplish, if we believe we work on complex, highly interdependent agendas: No more black and white, it’s all grey area… No more blanket approach, it never worked anyway… No more push vs. pull, it’s all customised to the very purpose required No more information vs. knowledge, it’s […]

Complexity in aid: An interview (by Ben Ramalingam) with Jaap Pels


Jaap Pels is a former colleague of mine and as he describes himself an ‘idea guru’. Pretentious you might think, but Jaap is close to his own mark, as he’s been one of the main sources of inspiration on KM for me and is a very thought-stimulating (and prolific) contributor on KM4Dev. In this interview, […]

Scaling, pacing, staging and patterning… Navigating fractal change through space and time


Change, change, change! So many clichés about change, so much ado about a big thing, so many ways to look at it and so many barriers to it! And just so it’s clear: I’m talking about social change (see some pictures about this concept), i.e. change that involves humans and their behaviour, as opposed to […]

How to navigate complexity in M&E and where KM can help


What’s happening in the world of monitoring and evaluation? How is complexity – the thinking and the reality – affecting it, highlighting gaps and creating opportunities? What can KM help to do about this? Here are some of the questions that this Prezi addresses. I’ll be presenting this in the course of next week at […]

KM for Development Journal news, zooming in on the facilitation of multi-stakeholder processes


Some news about the Knowledge Management for Development Journal, for which I’m a senior editor: the upcoming issue (May 2013) is just about to be released and will be the first open access issue again after three years of commercial hosting by Taylor and Francis. This is a really welcome move – back to open knowledge […]

Reducing complexity to a workshop? Wake & step up!


A short shoot post today. The white screen syndrome is kinda hitting me at the moment. But one thing is coming to mind: the delusion of packing the complexity of multi-faceted, multi-stakeholder, multi-perspective programs into planning activities in a planning workshop of one, two or even three days. I have recently facilitated a number of […]