Censemaking No.17

Design for Resilience

Resilience is a term we are seeing a lot of these days as we look around our neighbourhoods, workplaces, and (soon) schools -- whether online or 'in real life.'
In this issue, resilience is highlighted along with some of the methods and tools you can use to help foster, understand, and design for it within ourselves and our organizations. 
The best innovators are skilled at building resilience because change is hard at the best of times and for many, these are not the best of times. Resilience is also about bringing in compassion and joy to our lives and that is what will sustain us through meeting the challenges of life, which is what innovation is all about. We're going to show you ways to do it. 
Be strong, create, and may you find something to build those muscles of resilience and a little joy, too in this issue.

Thanks and be strong -- Cameron 

Looking Ahead

Futures Thinking

We're most resilient when we can anticipate what's ahead and prepare for it. Futures and foresight are approaches that can vastly increase our resilience potential by enabling us to strategically contemplate what might happen using data, trends, and creative and visual thinking tools. Nesta has developed a useful, practical guide for how to apply futures thinking and the tools to see ahead. It's not predicting the future, just preparing for it. 

Riding the Waves of Resilience

Rather than think of the future as a straight line, consider it more like navigating the waters like a sailboat captain. The most effective pathway involves riding the waves, not fighting them. That metaphor is at the root of a Censemaking post that looked at how resilience and foresight thinking go together and why seeing our future in waves might help us to better navigate stormy seas. 

Circular Economy: Thinking & Design

The circular economy is an evolving concept organized around the idea that we live in a finite system and need to consider using resources that better recognize that. The Board of Innovation has created a guide for those looking to understand and design better for a world where our products are less harmful to the world around us. 
The guide walks through a variety of business models and explores how to develop them for your organization. It's a helpful orientation to the circular economy and complements other resources such as those developed by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation


Remote Work Messaging

Remote teamwork brings a need for communication strategies that fit the context. 'Bursty' communications might be the answer. Research suggests those that teams who exchange messages in 'bursts' - a large volume of messages in a short time -- rather than consistently with large lags between them perform better than others. Creating in waves, rather than trickles, might be the key to making the most of working, sharing, and learning remotely and keeping us resilient in times of change.

Patients and Patience

Good health communication usually leads to good health outcomes. But what is the best way to communicate health information with patients, clients, or others? A summary of the state of the art on patient communication can provide insights for those working in healthcare and those who just want to support others with health needs. The lessons are to be patient, go beyond the physical issues, and recognize the resistance many of us have in sharing helpful information about health problems. 

Strengthening Ourselves

Organizational Resilience

The disruption that our current times present us with offers us a choice: do we restart or start-up? That's what John Hagel, John Seely Brown, and Sheryl Jacobson encourage us to ask of our organizations. Drawing on systems thinking, the authors ask us to look at our foundations that we've built our systems upon and suggest ways in which Artificial Intelligence and other technologies might help us to focus our efforts on -- ironically -- making our organizations more human-centred.  

Emotional Resilience

No amount of organizational resilience will exist if its people aren't healthy. Atlassian has pulled together research on emotional resilience and presented four key activities that can help all of us to cope, adapt, and thrive in difficult times. These include reflective practice journaling, using self-compassion and gratitude, and hope. Far from wishful thinking, these strategies are practical and can offer that hope we all need. Can't see hope? Try the foresight approaches discussed earlier and you might find a future scenario where we can design that in. 

Psychological Resilience

Psychologist Erin Lynn Raab has written a series of posts on Medium that explore ways in which we can build psychological resilience. Her series explores research-backed strategies to promote wellbeing, cope with stress, and find opportunities as well as cultivate self-compassion. By strengthening ourselves today we are better able to handle what comes tomorrow -- and will be better prepared to see opportunities when they come. 
Thanks for reading. If you like this, please forward it on to a friend. 
"If you're going through hell, keep going" ― Winston Churchill
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