2012-2013 Initiatives – Join now!

The WINS2012 Initiatives

We named the WINS2012 break out sessions “Audacious Challenge Forums” for a reason: it was extremely audacious to even think that we could come up with some actionable items to tackle some of the most challenging issues of our time. But we did!

The two-hour workshop session (Forum) was focused on developing solutions to challenges we face in the areas of Education, Economy, or Ecology. In order to allow more diverse interests, we also added a topic of Emerging Issues. Each Forum was guided by facilitators and thought leaders. We called the thought leaders “thought seeders” as their task was to lay out the “hot topics” of the challenge areas. The participants were asked to define what science or technology and leadership would be needed to implement the group’s idea, and what would be the social change that would occur as a result.

Prior to the Forum sessions, the attendees had heard three sets of short (5 minutes) “igniting” presentations by speakers and their engaging conversations on the stage. The themes of the presentations fell into the categories of Leadership of Innovation, Technology & Science of Innovation and Innovative Social Change. The conversations on the stage were facilitated by thought leaders in these areas.


#PursePower Initiative / Economy

The group working on the audacious challenge of developing and improving a sustainable economy decided that a major way of influencing the economy was through their purchasing power.  As women represent over 50% of the population and are managing 85% of the buying decisions, their intentional influence for the benefit of conscious consuming and sustainability could be powerful. The name “Purse Power” was coined. When purchases are made from companies that have made their sustainability and social change commitments transparent, Twitter handle #Pursepower could be used to share that fact in the social media. App technology should be developed for comparison shopping and other metrics. Twitter links and other forms of social media would be used to publicize preferred companies and products. Forums also would be held to define and promote the movement. Leadership would be evidenced by highly responsible companies leading the way, the setting of standards (state, national) and name personalities representing the message. The influence of “Purse Power” could be tracked by metrics regarding the number of companies vying for the competitive edge and complying with standards, ranking as a social trend, and social media traffic.  Another metric would be the number of companies that included traditionally “feminine values” and balanced their management or corporate scorecard. The potential social change of utilizing “Purse power’ was considered very significant.

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STEAM Initiative / Education

The group working on the audacious challenge of developing and improving our countries educational system wanted to see a number of things accomplished.  The Forum expressed a desire for the education of the whole person along with the theme of breaking down societal divisions and educational divisions. The aspiration is to integrate the arts and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), thus creating a more wholesome education as STEAM. This would require innovative ideas to also work within some of the educational time and funding constraints. The leadership for this change would need to come from the Universities, Foundations, the State, other educational organizations, and importantly including a youth focus and youth leadership. The social media would provide a communication path. The education metrics would not necessarily be based on test scores, it could be measured on competency (as is done in some of today’s educational environments). Pilot programs would lead the way and tune the system(s).

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Apprenticeship Model Initiative / Education

Connecting business leaders and students in order to create more connected links between the industry and academia.

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Education for Sustainability Initiative / Ecology

The group working on the audacious challenge of improving the environment wanted to create a social change where society did not continue to create a society of consumption. There would need to be increased emphasis in education with a true environmental curriculum which was required for all. There would be increasing transparency of a business’s environmental status and efforts. Technologies role was seen as continuing to support the “educational” process of the individuals and business’s and the dissemination of content regarding sustainable living continues to be created.

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WIKIWINS initiative / Emergent

The fact that only 9% of Wikipedia editors are women, caused quite a stir and it generated interest in creating educational programs for women to get more involved in the WIKI-editing. A proposal was made to the King county Library System to establish a Wikipedian in residence position. The goal was stated that by the next WINS 20% of editors will be women at Wikipedia.

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Collaboration Toolkit Initiative / Emergent

The group that undertook the audacious challenge to define emergent themes and ideas stressed that the key was to use systems thinking to work with emerging ideas. They chose an individual to lead continuing dialogue on emergent themes and proposed ongoing forums to develop ideas. A point was made to value an individual’s “soul calling”. Technology can support virtual forums and non-traditional” collaboration. Non-traditional collaboration may give rise to some fruitful results (Zealyst, for example). A potential metric is the number of “think tanks” developed to pursue the emergent innovations.  One concrete objective of this group was to create a Collaboration Toolkit for women.

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