Resurrecting the Ordinary

The Quakers of the seventeenth century thought of themselves 
as “God’s ordinaries.” They meant ordinary in the sense that extraordinary acts are not reserved for the special few. They believed that we are all born with the capacity to be … Read More

Stepping Out

Dear Reader, I’m excited to be back blogging! For more than 2 years I’ve been immersed in writing a new book, Impact: Six Patterns to Spread Your Social Innovation. (More details very soon!) Writing a book in my case meant … Read More

Jim Flaherty, poverty fighter

Today, Jim Flaherty, Canada’s former Minister of Finance is bring honoured with a state funeral. Even his critics acknowledge his commitment to people with disabilities and their families. They point to the Registered Disability Savings Plan as the highlight. My … Read More

Women for The Long Now

I support the Long Now Foundation. It wants to shift our fast paced, fast thinking culture toward long term thinking. Among their many projects they are assembling the 3,500 books most essential for sustaining or rebuilding humanity. Its co-founder Stewart Brand … Read More

"There's always someone trying to make change happen and to make our world even more beautiful"

Stephen Huddart, President & CEO, the J.W. McConnell Foundation

"To transform the isolation and self-interest within our communities into connectedness and caring for the whole.”

Peter Block

10 Reasons for Thinking Like a Movement

Every January Vickie Cammack and I host PLAN Institute's Thinking Like a Movement. This year we;ve added Social Innovation Generation as a co-sponsor. It is a time to share insights and perspectives about social and environmental change we've gleaned form … Read More

Flourishing into Life

Karin Melberg Schwier’s new book Flourish creates the right conditions for a little hell to break loose. That’s because it pays attention to the real stuff of life – beauty, love, hospitality, longing, desire, messiness, passion, pleasure, joy, celebration… This … Read More

Vancouver Connects and Engages

            Something is in the air in my home town. Posters on bulletin boards everywhere including my favourite bagel shop. Daily op- ed features in the Vancouver Sun. An ambitious week long 'public square' celebration … Read More

An American Tune

It is peak season for US politics. We non-Americans watch entranced and disgusted by the search for shadows that are bound to lurk in the hearts of Presidential opponents, as they do in each of us. Hubris takes no prisoners … Read More

The British Paralympics – Destination Unknown

Gregor Wolbring is the purest, cheekiest and most prolific commentator I know on issues affecting people with disabilities. Perhaps it's his European origins blended with his Albertan sensibilities as Associate Professor, Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary.  He does not … Read More

Five (Plus One) Good Ideas About Social Innovation

The Maytree Foundation runs a marvellous lunch and learn series titled Five Good Ideas. They cover just about everything and are worth having a look at. Fortunately they have released a compilation of their first years called not surprisingly Five … Read More

Speaking Up for the Soul of Civic Life – Cardus

An eloquent champion for civic values, community life and charities has emerged on the Canadian scene.   Cardus (see note below) is a Canadian think tank which draws, "on more than 2000 years of Christian social thought, and works to … Read More

Relying On Each Other- the Abundance of Community

Many of us believe we should not rely on the institutions of government, business and non profits to solve our toughest societal challenges on their own. Who then can we count on? The answer, if you follow John McKnight's work, … Read More

Arthur Wood – A Clauswitzian Interpretation Of Impact Investing

Arthur Wood is the Einstein of social finance. You may not immediately understand everything he says, writes or does but you know he is worth paying attention to. For example, several years ago on a whiteboard in Vancouver he sketched … Read More

Gordon Hogg – Social Innovation’s Political Ambassador

When Charlie Leadbeater visited British Columbia earlier this year he commented on three strategic social innovation advantages BC has compared to other jurisdictions. One is the presence of First Nations leadership connected to a heritage of resilience, creativity amidst adversity … Read More

Understanding the Student Demonstrations in Quebec

The rest of Canada was slow to pick up on the student demonstrations in Montreal. There have been nightly parades, demonstrations and rallies for over one hundred days straight. Usually they involve tens of thousands and sometimes hundreds of thousands. … Read More

After the Black Out

The impact was dramatic. First we lost all our government funding as part of an omnibus bill within a massive restraint program. Then we were obliged to submit to a long onerous and time consuming Income Tax audit. The third … Read More

Belonging a 21st Century Challenge

Here is an excerpt from a recent breakfast presentation sponsored by Metro Vancouver.  I had the pleasure of co-presenting with Catherine Clement and Lidia Kemeny, two leading philanthropists with the Vancouver Foundation. Illustration opposite courtesy my talented Australian friend Paul … Read More

BC Ideas – Seeking Innovative Responses to Social Challenges

For the past year I’ve been part of a group developing BC Ideas – a web based, crowd sourcing platform seeking innovative solutions to some of British Columbia’s tough social and environmental challenges. All ideas welcome. No idea too big … Read More

Joe Clark’s Advice for Social Innovators – Marry Imagination with Mandate

At a recent Public Policy Forum dinner honouring Canada's six living former Prime Ministers, Joe Clark spoke about the critical talents required for a changing world. It is a world in which non – governmental organizations may have more power … Read More

BC Social Innovation Council releases final report

The BC Social Innovation Council released its final report, Action Plan Recommendations to Maximize Social Innovation in British Columbia, on Friday April 27th.  Here is the report. The eleven recommendations are meant to enhance the work of social innovators and … Read More

Consider this: there are more First Nations youth in government care today than at the height of the residential school travesty in Canada funding for on -reserve schools is 25 per cent less than funding for public schools and only … Read More

Big Changes in the Ability World

My blog has been silent these past two weeks because I've been engaged in confidential negotiations with the federal government associated with their recent budget. I'm now in a position to make an informal announcement.  Full details will be released … Read More

Caroline Casey – What Am I Skating Towards? A Global Disability Business Movement

I am in Ireland at Ashoka's massive Change Nation initiative (more on this soon).  One of the organizers is Caroline Casey an Ashoka fellow and force of nature.  Here is Caroline's response to What Are You Skating Towards in 2012?   … Read More

What Are You Skating Towards? The Complete Essay Collection now Available

I am always attracted to unoccupied space. Realms where the dominant culture has not advanced its patriarchal or empire narrative."writes Peter Block in the collection What Are You Skating Towards in 2012? His essay is one of 60 which begins … Read More

Charles Holmes – What Am I Skating Towards? Wish People and Wish Organizations

This is Charles Holmes' response to What are you skating towards in 2012?                                                                                  Wish People and Wish Organizations MY QUESTION FOR 2012: Am I working with wish people and wish organizations? A few days ago I received a touching … Read More

Jacques Dufresne – What Am I Skating Towards? The Hill of Life

Here is Jacques Dufresne's response to What are you skating towards in 2012?                                                                      The Hill of Life MY CONCERN THIS YEAR is … Read More

Lindsay Cant – What Am I Skating Towards? My Own Dog

This is Lindsay Cant's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? My Own Dog THIS YEAR I WOULD LIKE to get my own dog. My family likes dogs. My Dad likes his dog Billy so much I have … Read More

Richard Bridge – What Am I Skating Towards? The Future of the Annapolis Valley

This is Richard Bridge's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? The Future of the Annapolis Valley Despite the exceptionally mild month of December in this part of the world and a rare absence of ice on the … Read More

Cormac Russell – What Am I Skating Towards? Community: The Forgotten Tool of Change

This is Cormac Russell's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Community: The Forgotten Tool of Change OF LATE, the most important lesson to emerge, from what seems to me to be a fledgling renaissance of community life … Read More

Stefan Lorimer – What Am I Skating Towards? Canada’s New Identity

This is Stefan Lorimer's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Canada’s New Identity Respice Nos Exempla — Look to us for Examples — Tournent vers nous pour des Exemples — 希望我們的例子 Multiculturalism isn’t enough to form a … Read More

Brad Johnston – What am I Skating Towards? – Skating, Flying, Surfacing

This is Brad Johnston's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Skating, Flying, Surfing I am a public servant in the Ontario government at a time of unparalleled fiscal imbalance — where the services we already have, cost … Read More

Gord Tulloch – What Am I Skating Towards? Being a ‘Good’ Person

This is Gord Tulloch's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Being A ‘Good’ Person Throughout my life I have wanted to be a good person. I have spent a lot of time trying to get a handle … Read More

Tim Draimin – What Am I Skating Towards? Solutions Alignment

This is Tim Draimin's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Solutions  Alignment I AM SKATING IN 2012 towards solutions alignment — accelerating how we bring our resources — within and among organizations and sectors — into alignment … Read More

Shawn Smith – What Am I Skating Towards? Investing in Human Potential

This is Shawn Smith's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Investing in Human Potential We’ve all seen the statistics about poverty, and probably felt a bit overwhelmed. When we do engage it is often through a 1-800 … Read More

Linda Perry – What Am I Skating Towards? Community

This is Linda Perry's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Community When I first started to mull this idea over, I was thinking fairly literally about the experience of skating and considering what I am currently skating … Read More

David Roche – What Am I Skating Towards? Skating Like a Movement

This is David Roche's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Skating Like a Movement For the last year or so I nursed the puck, staying in my own zone, circling behind the goal, then off to the … Read More

Ted Kuntz – What Am I Skating Towards? The Edge

This is Ted Kuntz's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? The Edge I’m skating toward the edge. I believe we all are. I believe we are living in a time of profound change. Life as we have … Read More

Vickie Cammack – What Am I Skating Towards? Balance

This is Vickie Cammack's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Balance I am six years old.  Beaver Lake in Stanley Park is frozen solid and my thin legs stand rigid for the first time in unforgiving, gleaming … Read More

Alex Fox – What Am I Skating Towards? Belonging in the UK

 This is Alex Fox's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Belonging For some time now, social care in the UK has been all about independent living: helping younger disabled people to move into their own homes; helping … Read More

This is Gordon Atherley's response to What are you skating towards in 2012?  Shifting the Mindset of Canada’s Healthcare System The shift is needed, urgently, because of increasing dominance in Canada by diseases that are incurable. Healthcare needs to acknowledge … Read More

Kirsteen Main – What Am I Skating Towards? – Getting My Poems Published

Here is poetry by Kirsteen Main for your Valentine's Day reading pleasure as well as her response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Getting My Poems Published What I would be skating towards – if I could skate … Read More

Steve Sunderland – What Am I Skating Towards? Compassion

This is Steve Sunderland's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? COMPASSION Teaching the concept of “compassion” has been a joy since September 11, 2001. This is my personal program to foster understanding and insight into what would … Read More

Sean Moore: Where Am I Skating Towards? Effective Public Engagement

This is Sean Moore's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Effective Public Engagement in Civic Affairs My current preoccupation, my passion, my thing these days, is to very personally and directly do something tangible about what most … Read More

Linda Couture – What Am I Skating Towards? Celebrating Our Shared Humanity

This is Linda Couture's response to What are you skating towards in 2012?  Celebrating Our Shared Humanity Looking back at this past year’s experience of living in my mother’s world of Alzheimer, and accompanying my dad in this journey, has … Read More

Ted Jackson – What I Am Skating Towards.

This is Ted Jackson's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Skating Towards the Corners In hockey, when you skate into the corners of the rink, you know you are headed for a rough ride.  That’s the place … Read More

Sherri Torjman – What Am I Skating Towards? Recreation and Community Engagement

Here is Sherri Torjman's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Recreation and Community Engagement I recently delivered a keynote address at the first National Recreation Summit. The event gathered from all regions people who are involved in … Read More

Cheryl Rose – What Are You Skating Towards? The Middle of Nowhere

This is Cheryl Rose's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? The Middle of Nowhere Between the old and the new, there is a place that is a kind of nowhere-land and it is one of the most … Read More

Christian Bason – What Am I Skating Towards? Rehearsing the Future

 This is Christian Bason's response to What are you skating towards in 2012? Rehearsing the future As we enter 2012, new challenges arise for MindLab, the organisation I run. An internal innovation unit for three national ministries, MindLab has for … Read More