Social Sustainability – Systems Thinking

I have been working on translating traditional community development principles into online environments. Peter Senge has me questioning my presumptions. I can create a short term phenomena – like a fad and measure short term behaviours as success or I can participate in the creation of a community that will grow and evolve.

What I realize is that my world view is one that does not value fads. I want my efforts to last. It will not be enough to have followers on Twitter if no relationships are formed. I do think fads can teach us many things. The early adopters that create fads provide the case studies and learning points that will impact the majority in the near future and a fad may be the launching point to broad based and long term behaviour change.

Senge used the analogy of a cake in a recent presentation to the Vancouver Board of Trade to explain the need for ecology to be in our planning view to create sustainability. It got me thinking about something that looks more like a cookie. Below are some of my thoughts around creating sustainable communities. Comments, additional thoughts and outright challenges to the premise are welcome.



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