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Archive for the 'Networked theory of goodness' Category

Mar 17 2009

Congratulations, Megan Smith, on your new role at Google.org

Dear Megan,

It’s great to hear of your new role as general manager of Google.org.  I have fond memories of our chats as fellow Fellows at Stanford’s Digital Visions Program and the Uplift Academy workshops.  (I took your advice about solar cookers and moderated my enthusism for them).

I’ve been tracking Google’s philanthropic goal to devote 1% of Google’s equity and profits to philanthropy for some time now, and even blogged a bit in 2005 about it when it seemed to be lagging: What Ever Happened to Google’s 1% Better World Funding? See my current report card from my analysis of things to date)

Recall that Google’s SEC IPO filing said:

“We intend to contribute significant resources to the foundation, including employee time and approximately 1% of Google’s equity and profits in some form. We hope someday this institution may eclipse Google itself in terms of overall world impact by ambitiously applying innovation and significant resources to the largest of the world’s problems.”

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Feb 28 2009

Michael Hemmingway, David Cooperrider talk about Dove Pro Age

Michael Hemmingway of Ogilvy Mathers is the project manager for the Dove ProAge advertising campaign Campaign for Real Beauty. This was recorded at a session at the 2007 Images and Voices of Hope Summit at Peace Village, Haines Falls, NY. David Cooperrider hosts the discussion. The campaign focused on improving women’s self image, particularly younger girls. See Evolutionand Outrage.

See also an alternative view of Greenpeace looking at Dove’s use of Palm oil from in their video Dove Onslaught(er)

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Feb 27 2009

Some background on the Valeo Initiative (Vvaleo)

In the late 1990’s I was involved with a group called Vvaleo formed by Dee Hock (founder of Visa International and proponent of “Chaordic” organizations) Rob Kolodner (then of the VA), David Cooperrider (CASE, founder of Appreciative Inquiry), Tom Garthwaite (head of VA health care), Heather Wood Ion (then CEO of Visiting Nurses Association of Orange County), Don Lindberg (National Library of Medicine) and others.

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Heather Wood Ion and I were seeking to apply Jonas Salk’s ideas about creating an Epidemic of Health (this was the last paper he edited before he died.)  Reframing health care to the positive – creating a viral expansion of positive, health-inducing and supporting ideas, activities, technologies, and support structures is a fundamentally different framework than seeking out what’s wrong and how to fix it.  This was my first exposure to David Cooperrider’s notion of Appreciative Inquiry (Thanks David), and it really rang trRob Kolodner at initial Vvaleo meetingue to my thinking about what I called “benegnosis” (a way of understanding by what is positive) in contrast to “malgnosis” (a way of understanding by what is failing). The Vvaleo group had a few interesting meetings and support from the VA as well as the Fetzer Institute.  David also invited me to the Images and Voices of Hope meeting at Peace Village in Haines Falls, NY.

We developed an Appreciative Inquiry Living Dialog to Support Health Care to support the ideas.  The idea petered out in time (a story in itself – coming soon).  But I think it is a good framework upon which to rethink health care reform ideas, and to lift our thinking above the “disease industrial complex” which is so prevalent in today’s climate.  I think that this also has a lot of relationship to the National Health Information Network, an effort now headed by Valeo founder Rob Kolodner.  After 30 years of tilting windmills with Rob in the VA VistA (then DHCP), then Vvaleo, and now the National Health Information Network, I think he is in a unique position to understand the role of Information technology and how it can lead, rather than follow, organizational reform.

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Feb 17 2009

The Science of Happiness

Barbara Frederickson I’m supporting the San Diego Science Festival, organized by my neighbor Larry Bock and the Biobridge program at UCSD.  Larry noticed that they had huge science festivals in England, and in typical entrepreneurial style, started one here in San Diego.  Balboa Park is one of the premier public spaces in the US, I think, so its wonderful to see the festival pretty much take over all the available open air space for over 300 booths and activities on April 4.  They are projecting 30,000 people, but I suspect the tally will go much higher.Sonja Lyubomirsky

I’ve reserved a booth at the Expo for the Cosmos Research Center to do an experiment on the “Science of Happiness.”  In true Appreciative Inquiry style, we will be asking, “How can we make San Diego the Happiest Place on the planet?”   Just asking this question is a powerful, and I think very timely. James Fowler I’ve talked about this a bit in my conversations with James Fowler about infectious happiness, and Jonathan Haidt about Positive Psychology, author of the The Happiness Hypothesis I’ve also been in contact with Sonja Lyubomirsky at UCR (my alma mater), author of The How of Happiness as well as Barbara Frederickson, author of Positivity.

If we look a scale of human (or societal) functioning from -10 (really bad) to zero (normal) to +10
Jonathan Haidt (really good), we find that most of our thinking is focused on moving things from the -10 to 0.  The range from 0 to +10 is often ignored, or at least drowned out by all the mediagenic misery is so prevalent in the headlines.  This is a deep subject that I’ve been concerned about for some time (I named the two ways of looking at things “benegnosis” – a way of knowing by what is positive and flourishing, and “malgnosis” – a way of knowing by what is failing.)

For the booth activities at the festival April 4, I’ll be arranging an experiment to look at whether happy people are more creative.  I’m looking for volunteers for the event… see the Cosmos Research Center site for more information.

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Jan 27 2009

Inauguration night: Barbara Marx Hubbard in Conversation with Tom

Barbara Marx Hubbard founder of the Foundation for Conscious Evolution talks with Tom Munnecke and others on the night Obama’s inauguration. She discusses her campaign for the vice presidency 25 years ago, and how her dreams and visions of that time are coming to fruition with the new shift in direction. She talks about her notion of Peace Rooms, ways of finding out what’s working, how to develop grass roots organizations that also feed information to centralized ones. Tom talks about the network effects of goodness, and how all this might “go viral.” Heather Wood Ion, Jim Pinto, Prapanna Smith, Nancy Walsh, and Carla Gerstein also participate. Video by Robert Foxworth, music by Kevin MacLeod, editing by Tom Munnecke. Taped Jan 20, 2009 in Encinitas, Ca.  See also James Fowler’s Interview on the positive effects of Social Networks.  This interview has been permanently saved at the Internet Archive.
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Jan 22 2009

David Ellerman

David Ellerman talks at the 2007 Good Ancestors Principle Workshop.
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Jan 22 2009

Judith Rosen at 2007 Good Ancestor workshop

Judith Rosen talks about her father Robert Rosen’s work bridging the gap between physics and biology as well as the role of anticipatory systems theory.
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Jan 07 2009

James Fowler in Conversation with Tom

This is conversation between UC San Diego Political Scientist James Fowler with Tom Munnecke and Heather Wood Ion on James’ research of happiness, obesity, drinking, and more based on the Framingham Heart Study data. He provides some provocative evidence that social networks might propagate happiness in a contagious fashion, more powerfully than unhappiness. We also talk about the spread of loneliness, ways of researching empathy, centralized “smart center” networks vs. smart edges, group selection, the work of happiness and elevation by Jonathan Haidt, and ways we might construct networks of uplift. Videography by Robert Foxworth, music by Kevin MacLeod. Taped Jan 6, 2009 at the UC San Diego Faculty Club. This video is also archived at the Internet Archives.
See also James’ paper on genetic basis of Social Networks
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Jan 03 2009

Singularity discussion at Good Ancestors 2007

Including David Brin, Ben Goertzel, Vernor Vinge, Frederick Turner, Jamais Cascio, Deidre Taylor, Lenore Ealy, Tom Munnecke.
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Jan 02 2009

Frederick Turner Roadtrip Interview

Frederick Turner, inteviewed at San Simeon on the California Coast Highway on his experiences growing up in Africa; J.T. Fraser’s theory of time, as well as some of his poetry.  We were driving up California Highway 1 coast road to the International Society for the Study of Time triannual conference.  Turner is Founders Professor of Arts and Humanities at the University of Texas at Dallas.  Produced by Tom Munnecke.
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