A Short Case Study
Fiona is the founder of Protimos, a charity dedicated to protecting the Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) of indigenous people.
She had to organise a multi national symposium in a way that would challenge conventional thinking and enrich the debate on the topic of the IPRs of indigenous peoples.
She wanted to ensure that this symposium “would be different to conventional symposia, that it would be a closed and informal environment, that it encouraged dialogue, built relationships and had maximum benefit.”
Facilitating a workshop on this contentious issue in a problem focused way could lead to disagreement, hostility and broken relationships, as previous seminars had demonstrated.
Yes! And…worked with her on a pro bono basis to design and facilitate the workshop in a Solutions Focus way.
“The Symposium built really good future relationships that are now (12 months later) bearing fruit. And perhaps most important of all, the people who came realized that there were different approaches which could be taken to address the challenge.
The whole Symposium challenged the existing orthodoxies in people’s minds, and the positive effects of that will be felt for a long time yet.
All those who came to the Symposium seem to have spread the word that the work was really good and the consequence is that those who couldn’t come then have been moved by the positive feedback of the Symposium to engage with us further, in the next stages of the process.
I liked the risks which we took in designing and running the Symposium. They were honest and as we felt them, either when huge issues suddenly arose, or when someone challenged the Solutions Focus Approach out of defensiveness or obstinacy, they were really well resolved, with no sense of pressure or compromise.
I liked the continual change of pace, the use of physical space and the care which was taken to ensure that all participants had a fair share of the air time.”
Founder of Protimos
For a full article on how we facilitated the meeting using a Solutions Focus approach, please consult the “Case Study Articles“, “Solutions Focus and the Intellectual Property Rights of Indigenous People”
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