Books and Papers
- The Tao of Holding Space. The essence of Open Space Technology facilitation is known as “holding space.” This book explores the practice of holding space by reinterpreting the Tao te Ching. While written for Open Space facilitators, it has wide application across a number of facilitation approaches. This book is available for free.
- Open Space Technology a User’s Non-Guide Edited by Chris Corrigan and Michael Herman (.pdf). A companion to Harrison Owen’s Open Space Technology: A User’s Guide, this book is an edited conversation between 37 Open Space Technology practitioners. The book is available for free.
- The Change Handbook. The definitive guide to facilitating large scale change. I contributed material to the Open Space Technology chapter and experiences with mixing and matching methods.
- The Ago of Conversation. If ideas are the currency of our times then this is, undoubtedly, the Age of Conversation, for without the art of dialog, the cut and thrust of debate and discussion, then the economy of ideas would implode under its own heavy weight. Instead, the reverse is true. Far from seeing an implosion, we are living in a time of proliferation â€” ideas build upon ideas, discussion grows from seeds of thought and single headlines give rise to a thousand medusa-like simulations echoing words whispered somewhere on the other side of the planet. All this â€” in an instant. In what began as a half dare, the editors, Gavin Heaton and Drew McLellan challenged bloggers around the world to contribute one page â€” 400 words â€” on the topic of â€œconversationâ€. The resulting book, The Age of Conversation, brings together over 100 of the worldâ€™s leading marketers, writers, thinkers and creative innovators in a ground-breaking and unusual publication.
Interviews and podcasts
- Open Space Meetings – from March 2010 an interview with me and two of my colleagues on using Open Space instead of traditional conference formats.
- Living and Enjoying Open Spaces with Chris Corrigan – a profile from my university alumni magazine, published in June 2007.
- The Tao of Holding Space – An interview about my ebook and my facilitation practice published in Fieldnotes Issue 12, from the Shambhala Institute.
- On unconferencing – a podcast conversation with Johnnie Moore and Rob Paterson on the future of unconferencing from July 4, 2005.
- Free to do our work (.pdf) – An online interview on empowerment, freedom and Spirit hosted by Doug Germann at Footprints in the Wind in March 2003.
Papers and articles
- Six observations about seeing – a paper on the leadership capacity of seeing the world around us.
- Language and Leadership for Dialogue – a paper on useful language and leadership practices for convening dialogue
- Open Space and the Legacy of Education (.pdf) – A paper that uses John Taylor Gatto’s “Seven Lesson Schoolteacher” essay to explain why people experience freedom shock in Open Space.
Since 2001 I have published two weblogs of my own. Â They contain a wealth of my writing and thinking.
I have collected some of my most significant writing from over the years on a page called A Collection of Life’s Lessons.