Harbinger Consultants

Creative Sustainability :: Place, People, Product, Potential, Partnership + Pollinating

ENGAGE | Building relationships

February already and our year is starting with some great relationship driven projects.

Mentoring

John is mentoring two cultural organisations under the Australia Council’s six year funding program. The mentoring relationship was brokered by Arts Queensland and John will mentor these small to medium organisations in developing their expressions of interest for operational funding.

John is also mentoring seven artists in the Art from the Margins Emerging Artists program. As mentor, John will meet with the artists and provide professional feedback and discussions on developing and selecting works to display, guidance on presentation, pricing of works, working in the commercial world of art and further creative development.

Impact

Work is also continuing on a major initiative that will commercialise traditional bush medicines. John is working on business case development, governance and financing. The project is ambitious and has an aspirational social purpose tied to positive impacts for Aboriginal people and communities. With impact investing attracting more interest among financial, community and government groups, this new enterprise is well placed to deliver significant social returns and impact.

Our other initatives strategic planning for a sports and recreational organisation. The strategic planning process is working with the Theory of Change approach. A member survey has been conducted and feedback will inform further development of the planning and policy review.

Academic

Linda is also working as a sessional academic with the School of Design and editing the second volume of the International Symposium on Urban Form (ISUF) 2013 Conference Papers. The first volume is available online.

Learning

It’s also a year for learning. Linda will be commencing her PhD soon at QUT having received a scholarship; her research will focus on infrastructure, governance, sustainable transition and innovation in the regional planning and development context. We’re also participating in a massive online open course (MOOC), U.Lab: Transforming Business, Society, and Self. The course is led by Otto Scharmer from MIT and The Presencing Institute. The course introduces participants to Theory U and is about leading profound innovation for pioneering a more sustainable economy and society. It focuses on the intertwined relationship of the following three questions:

  • Transformation of Capitalism: How can capitalism and society evolve from its current forms to an emerging future form that creates well-being for all?
  • Multi-stakeholder innovation: What leadership does it take to create profound innovation at the scale of the whole eco-system of stakeholders and partners?
  • Presencing: How can people access their authentic self – their highest future possibility – and “act from” that heightened state of awareness in the now?

We are now in week four of the five week course, which is grounded in an ethos of ‘learning by doing’. As part of the process, we have established a Brisbane U.Lab Hub which meets weekly as a study group. We are also participating in weekly coaching circles, through which we are learning and practicing a powerful approach to exploring leadership and change. We’re very grateful for these opportunities as they are greatly enhancing our practice and growing our community.

Milestone

In case you missed it, one of Linda’s major achievements last year was the completion of her cultural writing project, Fieldworking. The project was funded by the Australia Council’s Visual Arts program. Fieldworking sought to topologically and topographically examine public art and cultural space. The intention was to focus on relational and connective spatial processes and practices. In designing the approach for the project, Linda sought to write topologically, linking the writing and walking process through a reflexive approach to field work. This involved several elements: undertaking walks in various localities, taking panoramic photographs at points along the way, and integrating ‘writing as research’ which required writing in a reflexive and careful way in the experience. The project weaves through the writings of Tim Ingold, Francesco Careri, Yann Calberac and other theorists to explore the flows of walking, space and topology.

Fieldworking is comprised of two major essays and is available online as a draft. The first is an exploration of a walking trail along a waterway in suburban Brisbane and the second is an exploration of SCAPE7 Public Art Biennial Christchurch in the post-earthquake context.  The texts will be published as an ebook after they have been thoroughly edited.

Be in touch

We hope these projects and initiatives are pointing to a transformative and creative year, working closely with people and communities to actualise new and challenging ideas. Please be in touch if you think we can be of assistance to you.

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