learning communities LO6087

Joe Racine (jracine@csn.net)
Tue, 12 Mar 1996 09:20:41 -0700

In LO6009 William Hobler reacted to my post LO5962 about learning communities:

> He first has a litany of requirements on ordinary citizens.

You raise a valid criticism. However, it may be a criticism of my prose
rather than of my point. I was not trying to write a "ten commandments"
for citizens. Rather, I am trying to identify the learned skills and
information that would help citizens be more effective participants in the
process of public policy formulation. Senge writes, "The organizations
that will truly excel in the future will be the organizations that
discover how to tap people's commitment and capabity to learn at all
levels in an organization." My basic questions are whether communities
are organizations, and to what extent LO principles might apply to

Richard Harwood of the Kettering foundation did extensive research into
the perceptions of public officials regarding the value of input from the
general public. He found that most policymakers do not "seek" input,
rather they provide opportunities for input in order to meet their legal
responsibilities. While there are exceptions such as Alan Mossman
(LO6030), officials do not tend to promote dialogue between themselves and
the public, nor do they facilitate dialogue among citizens on complex
matters of public policy. I suggest that the initiative for more
productive public involvement may need to come from the public itself. On
the other hand, government officials, as positional leaders, may be in the
best position to facilitate, nurture, and maintain this participation.

In LO6059 Peter Pflaum wrote:

>Just a note to say look at the work of Steve Halperin " Design with Nature
>" he was famous in the 60's and 70's for community planning and values -
>also a lot of great projects in urban space - Based on Mumford Walk around
>and the GLCC new towns -

Good point, but are you really thinking of Ian McHarg?

Joe Racine
Joseph A. Racine & Associates
2485 West Main Street, Suite 206
Littleton, CO 80120
(303) 795-3199


jracine@csn.net (Joe Racine)

Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <rkarash@karash.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>