Patterns of Generative Community

In preparing for a future we can neither predict nor control, we are striving to create a generative, resilient community of individuals, groups, communities, and organizations. In HSD-informed terms,  a generative, resilient community can be characterized by a set of three over-arching patterns of engagement and action that “transform turbulence and uncertainty into possibility for all.”

Collaboration is a multilane highway, going in all directions. If there isn't reciprocity, it fails, and it's unsatisfying. —Jeffrey Wright

Justice is truth in action. —Benjamin Disraeli

Authenticity is very important - be true to one's self. —Laila Ali

The HSD vision statement describes what’s possible in a complex and turbulent future. That vision defines the role HSD can play in such a world. It also informs the work we do as HSD Professionals.

People everywhere thrive because we
see patterns clearly,
seek to understand,
and act with courage to
transform turbulence and uncertainty
into possibility for all.

We prepare people for a future they can’t predict or control. We work to create generative, resilient communities of individuals, groups, and organizations. Our Generative Engagement model offers a path to do that. Generative communities can be characterized by a set of three patterns of engagement and action. We think of those patterns as: 1) reciprocity; 2) authenticity; and 3) justice. We work begin to influence these patterns in our shared future. 

Reciprocity.  Members of the HSD community bring valuable differences as they use human systems dynamics. They engage in shared cycles of Adaptive Action to exchange ideas, working across their differences, and sharing questions. They work together across of a range of ideas, experiences, and questions,  shaping a broad pattern we call reciprocity. Small groups emerge around the globe to explore shared interests in HSD. These groups explore particular applications of HSD in a variety of sectors. They conduct research together, publish papers and books, teach others, and continue to learn about HSD. These groups work together for a time and may dissolve as energy wanes or as interests diverge. The HSD Community Commons establishes a venue for exchanges that support these multiple patterns of reciprocity.

Authenticity. Members of the HSD community bring questions and perspectives into shared work. They stand in inquiry with each other, seeking answers that are both true and useful. The openness of genuine inquiry creates a pattern of authenticity among members of the HSD network. Members share their wicked issues, trusting each other for support and insight. They find global applications in each other’s questions. The HSD Community Commons invites people from around the globe to come together to share their HSD stories in the authenticity of their experiences.

Justice. We work to support broad access to the theory and practice of HSD. Our intellectual property policy allows generous sharing of materials about theory and practice. Scholarships and value-for-value exchanges open doors to people who might not be able to access learning opportunities otherwise. Constant exploration seeks to make HSD meaningful and available to people around the globe. Open, shared exchanges create broad patterns of justice or fairness in how people use HSD. Invitations to participate and share at HSD Community Commons presentations establish a level of justice, in terms of fairness and access.

The HSD Institute takes care of the logistics and scheduling that support the Community Commons. HSD Institute staff work to strengthen the patterns of reciprocity, authenticity, and justice in the larger community. In a complex world, this work is never complete. As the world continues to evolve, multiple cycles of Adaptive Action will inform the work of the HSD Institute as we influence the conditions that shape the greater sense of community. At the same time, HSD Associates and partners contribute to patterns of reciprocity, authenticity, and justice as we all share our journeys, questions, and learnings.

The Community Commons provides a time and place for Associates from around the world to share how they use HSD to create significant change. Four times each year, members of the global HSD community come together in these sessions. They create reciprocal exchanges, share authentic questions, and create expanding opportunities for just and fair access to the praxis of HSD. Our 90-minute meetings  celebrate these emerging patterns in our communities.

Thursday, March 18, 2021, is the next Community Commons celebration. We invite you to join us in experiencing and celebrating the patterns of this emerging community!
Additional Information and Registration

Note: For more about Generative Engagement and these over-arching patterns, please check out these blogs that explore the model and its applications.

  1. Generative Engagement: Leverage Dynamics of Interaction
  2. Cultural Patterns of Generative Engagement
  3. When Generative Conditions are Out of Balance
  4. Creating Patterns of Generative Engagement
  5. Generative Engagement: Balance of Power
  6. Generative Engagement: Understand and Act to Change the World


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