New Future Plan: Executive Summary[edit | edit source]
The Process for a New Future is a community-led process sponsored by the Center for Nonviolent Communication (CNVC). Through this process, we have produced an integrated plan for what will be done to continue, replace, and expand on what CNVC now does. The plan calls for the creation of a new international NVC organisation. The plan refers to the new organisation as NVC-O, until a permanent name is chosen. The plan calls for CNVC to reorganise itself and merge into NVC-O as a part of the new organisation.
Our design of NVC-O is unconventional. The plan focuses only in general terms on what NVC-O will do. We gave more attention to designing NVC-O to make it easier for things to get done. The idea is a bit similar to the way the designers of Wikipedia focused only in general terms on what type of articles they wanted to have written, and gave more attention to creating a platform that would make it easy for people to collaborate on writing articles. We intend NVC-O to be a platform that supports people in collaborating to get things done in relation to NVC.
NVC-O will operate in a manner inspired by the book “Reinventing Organisations,” by Frederic Laloux. NVC-O will operate using principles of self-management, which support autonomy and empowerment and reduce decision-making bottlenecks. There will be no centralised authority. Instead, the “Partners” in NVC-O will each have full authority to make any decision, provided they ask advice from those likely to be affected by the decision and those who have relevant expertise. The one exception is situations where a collaborative decision-making process is requested.
Being a Partner in NVC-O will be comparable to being a worker/decision-maker in CNVC (e.g., a member of the staff or board). However, there will be more Partners in NVC-O than there have been worker/decision-makers in CNVC. Both trainers and non-trainers may become Partners. For the most part, those who don’t become Partners will be able to continue what they’ve been doing with very little change.
In the absence of a management hierarchy, we designed other mechanisms to support what Partners do in being synergistic and coherent. Partners will be asked to align what they do with Operational Agreements, which they will be encouraged to help improve. Partners will be invited to regularly consider how their work relates to the evolving purpose of the organisation and to organisational values, vision and mission. Partners will be asked to think about how what they do will affect the whole, operate transparently, participate in regular feedback processes, and participate in conflict transformation processes when needed. People becoming Partners will go through an “onboarding” process to learn about the organisational culture and agreements and discern if they and the organisation are likely to be a good “fit.” Partners will do their work in autonomous groups referred to as organisational “Weaves.”
Our design for NVC-O includes a commitment to cultivating awareness around issues of power, and to operating in ways that create more access for those who have been marginalised.
The plan calls for the establishment of an NVC-O Community, distinct from the NVC-O organisation. This will be similar to the current, informally defined, NVC community, with a few differences. It will be easy to tell what individuals and groups are in the NVC-O Community, by consulting an online directory. The NVC-O Community will have a Vision, Purpose and Mission. Individuals who resonate with these can sign up online to become “Members” of the NVC-O Community. Organisations and groups aligned with these can register to let it be known that they are affiliated with this community.
The plan calls for the creation of a sophisticated website called the “Virtual Home.” The Virtual Home will support NVC-O Partners all over the world in collaborating together and sharing information about what is going on in NVC-O. The Virtual Home will also support Members of the NVC-O Community in finding and connecting with one another.
The current trainer certification program will be replaced by a new “Recognised Roles” program. Certification has only been for people who wanted to be trainers. Recognised Roles will be available for trainers, NVC Practitioners, and, eventually, for those focusing on specialised applications of NVC. Certification has involved pairing each certification candidate with an Assessor. In the Recognised Roles program, candidates and others, including people in specialised roles intended to support the process (e.g., “Integration Trustees,” similar to current “Assessors”), will spend time together in community-based groups called “Recognised Role Weaves.” The group as a community will discern when a candidate is ready to step into a “recognised role.” Those coming into Recognised Roles will be asked to develop awareness around issues of power and privilege. Those in Recognised Roles will be asked to support their ongoing learning by participating in annual feedback processes.
Learning Event Weaves in NVC-O will be invited to initiate, co-create, sponsor, or encourage at least three types of regular learning events: International Intensive Trainings (IITs), facilitated learning gatherings, and self-organised NVC gatherings. The plan calls for continuing attention to evolving IITs based on ongoing learning, as well as offering theme-based IITs, and applying extra care in non-Western contexts and contexts where underserved communities are involved.
The plan calls for facilitating more experiences of community among NVC practitioners by designing the virtual home (website) to increase the capacity of the community to build community, creating a “living guidebook” for NVC communities, and establishing “Community Weavers” as a special role within NVC-O.
The plan calls for the inclusion of a social change and peacebuilding “hub” on the virtual home (website), and for the formation of Weaves in NVC-O focused on social change and peacebuilding. These Weaves will be asked to support project initiation, and maintain, and moderate content on, the social change and peacebuilding hub.
The New Future Implementation Council will invite people from the NVC community to help implement the plan. The Council will coordinate the implementation work. People will work as members of “prototype weaves” which will support learning and offer advice, or as “transitional partners” in “transitional weaves” which will make decisions about the implementation and take action. The plan projects that it might take around two years to launch NVC-O.