autonomous futures

Agenda and facilitation hassle
March 30, 2008, 8:04 pm
Filed under: reflective log

Oli, Tilly, Sophie TP, Mel and I had a meeting on Saturday to start working on the agenda. We ended up being there for about seven hours. Most of the difficulty stemmed from the fact that almost no one has bothered to send in proper proposals.

We knew that site group wanted a couple of hours and would take care of it themselves (great), there was a rumour that workshops wanted to do something, some scant details on budget proposals for a variety of working groups/projects and a mystery proposal from a closed mass action group. We had very few of the details necessary to work out the best order to do things or how long each session should last.

Also looming large was the threat of everything going off the rails due to a series of disagreements and an emergency meeting between the biofuels group and the networking group. After near disaster, the two groups had agreed for biofuels to do their own publicity instead of networking giving ‘equal weight’ to both. So, biofuels would now need a budget for publicity and this would need to be explained to the gathering without getting into the contentious and messy details (which had already been hashed out over email and through a series of other meetings).

The plan is to explain the barebones of the networking/biofuels debacle in the context of the request for a new budget. Of course, this means taking finance decisions to the main group which can also be scary. On the other hand, it’s good for new people to have an idea of how financial stuff is sorted and we expect there to be quite a lot of new people at the gathering.

For now, we’re going with this and frantically sending off emails to different groups, begging for more details. It’s pretty much impossible to plan the facilitation until we have more information. This is incredibly frustrating as there are loads of logistical things to be done. We’ve worked really hard at staying on top of things and now it feels like we’re behind because no one else has their stuff together.


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