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Archive for the ‘A. Contexting Intelligences’ Category


Here is the Integral City 2015 Meta Blog. It connects the 4 Voices of the Integral City to the Planet, People, Place and Power that energized us in 2015.

It follows the traditions of:

Integral City Meta Blog 2014

Integral City Meta Blog 2013

1. Equinox/Solstice Newsletters – Integral City Reflective Organ

  1. Integral City Reflective Organ – March Equinox 2015: Signs & Wonders of Planetary Shifts
  2. Integral City Reflective Organ – June Solstice 2015 – Pope, Planet of Integral Cities, People, Playgrounds
  3. Integral City Reflective Organ – October 2015: Places – Smart, Resilient, Integral
  4. Integral City Reflective Organ – December 2015: Inner Power, Outer Climate

2. City of the Year 2015: Paris

banner_01 Paris

For the first time in 2015 we could see that some cities are moving the forefront of a Planet of Integral Cities. In particular the role that Paris played in galvanizing the world to think and act in ways that made us conscious of ourselves at a city scale, inspired us to nominate Paris as City of the Year 2015. In particular Paris helped us appreciate the reality of the Master Code through taking care of Self/ Others/ Place/ Planet. Here are four blogs exploring Paris 2015.

  1. Je Suis Charlie
  2. Je Suis Paris
  3. Je Suis COP21
  4. Paris – City of the Year 2015

3. Leaders Meshworking in Europe & USA

Europe brought the impact of People, Planet, Place and Power into city awareness and showed how national leaders can bring the politics of dignity as a defense against the politics of fear. At the same time a small city in Oklahoma, USA is at the forefront of prototyping how to involve the dignity of all 4 city voices in the process of becoming an Integral City. We honoured Durant, Oklahoma as Meshworkers of the Year 2015.

  1. Discovering How Politics of Dignity Counters Politics of Fear
  2. Meshworkers of the Year Award 2015 – Imagine Durant, Oklahoma, USA Integral City of the Future

Imagine Durant diamond logo

 

4. Leadership Reviewed

Leadership in Integral City came into focus with the Integral Leadership Review Canada Issue in 2015 and subsequently inspired a number of leadership-related blogs:

©2014 Aboriginal Nations Education, Greater Victoria School Board, BC, Canada Artist Jamin Zurowski Bear/UL. Wolf /LL. Raven/UR. Salmon/LR. This Totem is a Gift used with permission on this Canada Issue. Please do not reproduce without © Permission.

©2014 Aboriginal Nations Education, Greater Victoria School Board, BC, Canada
Artist Jamin Zurowski
Bear/UL. Wolf /LL. Raven/UR. Salmon/LR.
This Totem is a Gift used with permission on this Canada Issue. Please do not reproduce without © Permission.

  1. A Totem for Curating a Story of Leadership in Canada – Integral Leadership Review
  2. From Totem Guides and Lock Masters to World Legacy Light – Integral Leadership Review Encore
  3. Integral City Leaders Use Generative Change
  4. Women Tell the Stories that Transform Old Story into New Story
  5. Cities are Evolving Climate Story
  6. Transportation Crossroads in the City
  7. Celebrating Canada’s 4 Quadrant Leaders on Canada Day

5. Pope Leading “Urbi et Orbi”

Traditionally the Pope offers year-end blessings for the City and the world (urbi et orbi) – but this year Pope Francis demonstrated throughout the year active leadership on integral views of ecology, climate and refugees.

  1. Pope Francis Calls for Integral Ecology
  2.  Pope Francis Offers Blueprint for a Planet of Integral Cities

6. Integral City: Harvested Impact at Integral Theory Conference 2015

Integral City invited participation processes, purposes and energies with Systemic Constellation Work in Pop-Up Playgrounds at the Integral Theory Conference 2015. We promised many outcomes here:

  1. 10 Best Reasons to Pop-Up at Playground Lunch ITC2015
  2. Take a Play Break: Pop-up, Play, Constellate
  3. ITC2015: Top 10 Reasons to Play at our Pop-Up Lunch

We published an Impact Harvest Report –you can find out about the Deep Design we used here:

  1. Pop-up Places, Process and PurposeHarvet Report Cover

7. Integral City: Woke Up the Human Hive Beyond the Smart and Resilient Cities at IT Smart City Conference

In September at IT Smart City Amersfoort, NL we explored the discourse that links Smart, Resilient and Integral Cities and how to recalibrate care, context and capacity for a planet of cities, summarized in this series of blogs:

  1. Bee Hive Metaphor Offers Human Hive Disturbing Pattern of Survival?
  2. The Human Hive Reveals Patterns that Determine City Types
  3. Beehive: Biomimicry Patterns for Smart, Resilient, Integral Cities
  4. Human Hive: Roles & Types
  5. How Do We Locate the Smart City?
  6. How Do We Locate the Resilient City?
  7. How Do We Locate the Integral City?
  8. How Do We Power Up Our Cities?
  9. Integral City GPS Locator Compass
  10. Waking UP the Human Hive – Recalibrating With Happiness

8. Householder Dharma

We started a periodic series of gentle “pointing out instructions” for applying principles from Integral City in your own home town (inspired by Marilyn’s home town in Canada).

  1. Householder Dharma: Gaining Altitude on a Community of Blessings
  2. Householder Dharma: The Best Exotic Qualities of Home
  3. Householder Dharma: Optimizing Home Base with Values
  4. Householder Dharma: Connecting People, Improving Health
  5. Householder Dharma: Fifty Shades of Green Make Walking Delightful

 

 

 

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Integral City nominates Paris as City of the Year 2015. Paris is the city featured on the cover of the Integral City book.

Integral City :Evolutionary Intelligences for the Human Hive

Integral City :Evolutionary Intelligences for the Human Hive

The City of the Year is a new – but natural award for us to make. We have recognized the importance of cities as both trigger points and tipping points in their respective nations and for the world at large.

Paris has been particularly on our heart/mind this year from January through to December. We have been learning how Paris has made possible a new sense of connectedness.

Paris has shown us three new ways of appreciating the Master Code through taking care of Self/ Others/ Place/ Planet.

Je Suis Charlie

Je Suis Paris

Je Suis COP21.

Each of these experiences, may not only represent breakthroughs from the “fever crises” of the human species, but also represent the vestiges of an early “We Consciousness” – the glimmers of our collective consciousness shining through Paris, the City of Light. This consciousness is shining through all who have supported her from the great to the ordinary, from the “present in body” to the “awake in spirit”, from the displaced refugee to the homeful citizen, from the reflective practitioner to the expressive artist.

What synchronicity and foreshadowing inspired the graphic artist to select Paris as the quintessential city for the cover of Integral City: Evolutionary Intelligences for the Human Hive?? That choice, made in 2008 has always fascinated me (and intrigued city planners and integrally informed readers alike) – but little could we have known that it would presage Paris’s high profile in 2015.

When people have asked me to identify Integral Cities, they have anticipated that I would point to particular cities demonstrating the features of an Integral City. But as I explained in the book, at the time of writing I was noticing the patterns and “weak signals” that indicated a new paradigm of the city was emerging. Many cities exhibited some qualities of an Integral City – but it has not been easy until the paradigms of the Smart City and Resilient City emerged in the last seven years, to point to particular cities as “Integral Cities”.

In nominating Paris as City of the Year, we are not even saying that Paris IS an Integral City – yet. But it has demonstrated a powerful City Spirit that responded immediately and deeply to the Charlie Hebdo attacks. Its defiance in the face of the multiple November 13 attacks continued its enactment of the key values born in earlier times: Liberté, Egalité and Fraternité. And its gracious and surprisingly secure hosting of the COP21 conference demonstrated alignment with a global purpose and strategic capabilities to keep safe space and time during a global conversation on ecology.

So in respect to the Integral City Intelligences we could say that Paris enabled a global conversation on ecological contexts, demonstrating inner, outer, cultural and social capacities, supporting strategies (inquiring, meshworking, navigating) that framed outcomes and walked through a refiner’s fire of dissonance for evolutionary breakthroughs.

If any city deserves the City of the Year 2015, Paris does. At this stage of human development none of us has a perfect record of living the Master Code – but collectively we are learning our way through to taking care of Self / Others/ Place / Planet.

Paris as City of the Year 2015 has offered a city-focused model of how the Master Code works – even on an implicit level.

Congratulations and Gratitudes to Paris – City of the Year 2015.

 

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Is it amazing that 195 nations were able to draft an agreement for Climate Change in Paris last week?

banner_01 globe EU Africa

Euphoria, celebrations and emotional highs marked the conclusion of the gathering. COP21 had been a long time coming with holdouts, recriminations and resistances marking its predecessor gatherings and the planning for this event.

But I wonder if the agreement could have been reached in any other location or year than Paris 2015?

Paris has suffered a year of unspeakable effrontery and pain with the Charlie Hebdo and November 13 attacks. Paris could easily have receded into a cave of cowering fear and justified cancelling COP21 as too demanding and irrelevant to Paris’ security, safety and sanity.

But with counter-intuitive courage Paris stepped into the refiner’s fire and affirmed its commitments to host COP21. What’s more, the participating countries took this opportunity to fly in the face of VUCA global-sized threats and attend the conference with the highest levels of state and working delegates.

In contemplating the Charlie Hebdo and November attacks as evolutionary eruptions of the human condition, I wonder if the terrorists behind these attacks have inadvertently created a “fever crisis” of the human system that demanded/demands a global size immune response?

While the Paris terrorists thought they were attacking representations of infidel practices, perhaps they actually created the conditions for the demonstration of a global immune response?  If so, the terrorists may have perpetrated a major unintended consequence that holds the seeds of undoing for their espoused system of barbarity and the seeds of the doing/being for global wellbeing?

COP21 had the intention of gaining global agreement to hold the impact of human-created climate change below 2C. And it celebrated the achievement of agreeing to an even more rigorous goal to limit temperature rise to 1.5C.

At the core of this agreement was the recognition that each person, organization, community, city, region and nation can contribute to the outcome. Self-responsibility is required at every level of scale.

And while the critics bemoan COP21’s lack of verifiable national targets, inspection processes and mechanisms for climate equity, the key vision and intention was named and endorsed. That is a significant beginning.

In evolutionary terms, what was set was a superordinate goal – one that transcended individual national interests – along with an intention to attain it through self-organizing means.

In the face of logic, scientific evidence and rational behaviour, critics lambaste the COP21 as hypocritical and illusory. But what they don’t recognize is that the agreement defies reason because of the emotional climate created by the Paris attacks. Underlying COP21 was a global need to demonstrate solidarity around an issue that matters to everyone.

The climate of outer change that was sought at COP21 was foregrounded by need for a climate of inner change for which Paris became the focal point.

Ironically the “fever crisis” of outer climate change has been proposed to be no higher than 2C. But the climate of inner change to achieve that will demand that the world work together in a way where metrics may well be measurable in evolutionary terms of the functionality of Gaia’s Reflective Organ (humans and our Human Hives).

What has been festering and boiling over in Paris’s cultural divides is a metaphor for what afflicts the inner climate of our human being (on a global scale). And the COP21 agreement as a global agreement sets the wellbeing targets for our outer climate. Together, the responses of Paris and COP21 provide both metaphorical and metaphysical grounds for a climate of change.

Thank you Paris for reflecting Gaia’s Light and displaying the courage we will need to make these inner and outer changes our new reality. You have shown me three new ways of appreciating the Master Code through taking care of self/ others/ place/ planet.

Je Suis Charlie

Je Suis Paris

Je Suis COP21.

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I have been mesmerized into muteness regarding Paris since the November 13 attacks.

banner_01 Paris

Je Suis Paris

A strange sensation like holding my breath has overtaken me – a kind of numbness and muteness. Writing has happened only in my head – and even then without much coherence.

Funny, since I was impelled to write quickly and passionately about Paris earlier in the year in the face of the Charlie Hebdo attacks. I named that experience an Ebola of the Soul. It was so shocking to the human system because Paris has been the archetype for Liberté, Egalité and Fraternité. The native and planetary support for Paris in January 2015 was immediate, public refusal to succumb to the real severe bodily injuries and the greater threat to freedom of speech (and the implied hostility to evolutionary consciousness itself).

But the November 13 attacks give bleak evidence of the dark intelligence behind the war theatre that was choreographed into the daily life of Paris – slaying and injuring people at sports, entertainment, dining and shopping venues. Re-creation itself was targeted – selecting places where all the 4 voices of the city congregated for the simple enjoyments and pleasures of life that renew, refresh and reconnect.

The planned simultaneity of the attacks heightened the reactions of fear, even as it stretched the emergency response systems to points of ineffectiveness. Our belated overviews of the situation reveal the reality of the VUCA intentions designed into the multiple attack zones:

Volatility at each site heightened because of the synchronization of the many battle zones;

Uncertainty because each and all City Voices (Citizens, Civic Managers, Civil Society, Business) at the many sites became confounded by the scale of local horror and disconnection from what people expect in their normal lives;

Complexity because people were overwhelmed with threat, injury and death without immediate explanation; and

Ambiguity because the meaning of the incidents and perpetrators of the acts emerged from shadow, disappeared into shadow and acted in darkness.

Moreover the timing of the attacks in the evening, literally taunted the City of Light by turning it into a city of darkness.

While the reactions inside and outside Paris to the Charlie Hebdo attack were swift and positive, the November 13 attacks were designed to overwhelm and confuse the responses of the city, nation, EU and world. They were deliberately designed to bring out the worst of human reactions – provoking counter threats, counter attacks and revealing the ineptness of authority and power in contrast to the self-righteousness of the attackers and their cause.

A month later authorities remain confounded by the death of martyred perpetrators at the scenes and/or the escape of perpetrators across borders and into the thousand hidey holes that support them (and their brothers) in the “sophisticated” cities of Brussels? Geneva? San Bernardino? It is a message with a strong “sous entendu” that no one is safe – not just in Paris but in any city of the world.

This fear and disconnectedness is exactly what the guerrilla factions want. They will be rejoicing at the political contractions and blame postulated by the far right (Le Pin, Trump). They are working at creating the conditions for expanding and spreading the Ebola of the Soul that Charlie Hebdo spawned, to a more Culturally Viral Ebola of the Body spawned by the November 13 outbreaks.

Does this mean that Paris’s natural contraction to protect itself is not appropriate? Or can we acknowledge that we all have been wounded. My own muteness/numbness is a reflection of Paris’ condition. Je Suis Paris – just as Je Suis Charlie. The Paris-wide scale of attack leads not only to the viral dis-ease but also to post traumatic stress disorder. Paradoxically just as we seek to hide from one another – in our pain, suspicion and pessimism – this is the time when we need each other most. “If you want to improve the health of a system, connect it to more of itself.”

Just as we discovered in contemplating Charlie Hebdo and the reality of the Politics of Dignity Trumping the Politics of Fear (regarding the not unrelated refugee situation) our first and strongest defence has to be to look within our own body/mind/heart/spirit. That is where we find the source of courage, respect, dignity, love and light for enacting wellness. But in order to do that, we need to connect to each other even in the times of greatest darkness – with compassion – so we can amplify the best of human nature that enables us to confront our deepest fears.

When the City of Light turns into the City of Darkness, perhaps there is an immune system, so deeply rooted in Life that our human system can find the way through our evolutionary battlegrounds back into the Light?  Let us hope that such a visceral dissonance to our calling to be Gaia’s Reflective Organs prompts a compassionately fierce immune response. Perhaps we are even witnessing in Paris the “fever crisis” that presages a breakthrough to a new level of evolutionary wellbeing for humans (and our Human Hives)?

 

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In September 2015 the Centre for Human Emergence Netherlands explored with me a proposition: The politics of fear can be trumped by the politics of dignity, regarding refugees, immigrants and voters.

refugees-flooding-into-europe low

We explored this question (drawn from Angela Merkel’s challenge to Europe in the face of the tide of refugees) using Systemic Constellation Work (SCW). SCW is a core process methodology that Integral City uses to do research and development to expand our ways of knowing the archetype of Integral City as a reflective organ for Gaia. SCW supports presencing, prototyping and processing for issues, questions, situations and challenges encountered by the Integral City Community of Practice.

SCW as a methodology taps into the collective unconscious (or Knowing Field (KF)) and reveals to participants, the archetypal patterns embedded in the field of the human system of interest. (SCW’s derive from Bert Hellinger’s family system constellation work that has expanded into many human systems including organizations, social issues, indigenous tribes, nations and in the case of Integral City – cities.)

Our NL experiment began with identifying the key Elements of this proposition: Fear, Dignity, Refugees, Migrants, Voters, Trump (the verb not the US mogul), Policy and Politicians.  An eighth element self-identified as Non-Voters.

Mapping out the Knowing Field (KF) within the circle of about 20 Witnesses, volunteers stepped forward to represent the Elements across 2 intersecting axes: Future/Past and Below/Above.

The first pattern within the KF was very chaotic with Elements strewn about helter-skelter – Policy bumping into Refugees attempting to move to the Future; Dignity being elbowed aside by Voters and Migrants; Politicians positioning themselves close to the Past and Non-Voters (expressing anger) stepping right outside the Circle of Witnesses. Fear started out close to the Past – and started talking argumentatively with little intention of shutting up. Trump hovered with no direction. Another new Element emerged as a possibility – Courage – who became a disembodied position (marked by a card) almost out of the circle above the Future axis point.

The second pattern with the KF emerged when Fear made his way from the Past to close to the Future, causing a ripple effect where the other Elements stretched out in a zig-zag pattern along the Future/Past axis like this:

Future

Fear          Refugees

Voters   Migrants

Dignity                (Courage disembodied)

Something Missing    Trump

Politicians

Past

Non-Voters

Meanwhile Fear kept up his verbal rant, taunting the Facilitator and other Elements. In the midst of this a mystery Element emerged that we simply recognized as “Something Missing” and Courage became embodied by a tall imposing man.

In the third and final pattern, the Facilitator demanded that Fear lie down and “be quiet” slightly offside from the Future.

This move precipitated a final pattern where Courage moved quite compassionately to stand beside Fear, while standing behind Dignity. From the zig-zag of Pattern 2, the other Elements moved so that the Refugees and Something Missing became the centre of a circle held by Dignity (located at 12 o’clock), Policy (located at 3) Voters (at 7) and Migrants (at 10).  Politicians, Trump, Non-Voters (now happy with the outcome) clustered together behind Past.

Discovering How Politics of Dignity Counters Politics of Fear Image_Page_1

Politics of Dignity Trumps Politics of Fear

Comments from Witnesses and Non-Voters produced the insight that the “Something Missing” was Respect (as it relates to the Integral City Master Code). We also received a reframe of the proposition: The Politics of Dignity can trump the politics of fear by respecting refugees, migrants and voters.

A post-SCW debrief produced these insights for Individuals, CHE NL and the World in Transition (resonating with the sequence of the Master Code – Take Care of Self, Others, Place-Planet):

For Individuals

I have a better sense of Dignity.

I recognize the importance of Courage.

I was struck by the importance of Non-Voters in the world (and that they represent both ancestors and marginalized voices).

Politics doesn’t represent the people.

We didn’t need Policy – Policy self-organizes what is in everybody.

This is a complex issue and we made visible many intentions related to it.

Politicians never solve problems.

Everything got easier when the Refugees moved into the centre – when they were in the centre, Light came in.

I sensed a strange connection between Dignity and the Non-Voters.

I see so much potential in the Refugees.

Actually there is no separation between Refugees and Voters.

I have more respect for the Refugee(s).

I am struck by the power of Fear and Not Knowing.

Fear recalibrates Not Knowing.

Courage is replaced by Self-Confidence.

Our final image was like a ship pointed towards the Future with the circle in the centre. I am curious about the Element of “Something Missing”.

Perhaps this is like (Clare Graves’) Never-Ending Quest? – Where Fear disappears as Integral thinking and approaches emerge – maybe that allows Fear to even recalibrate as Unknowing?

 

For Centre for Human Emergence NL

CHE NL started by looking for core problem underlying refugee crisis.

This is an exercise in consciousness to step up to global consciousness.

Simply talking is not enough.

When Fear is out of the way, the systems self-organize.

We can work on our self/selves.

Politicians don’t seem to be part of the game.

Spiral Dynamics integral shows us multiple levels of Dignity and Fear.

We can’t design solution that is a one size fits all. There are needs for Purple/Red and Blue/Orange solutions (and even the basics of Beige).

We must look for the half a step ahead of the natural leadership that is being expressed.

For the World in Transition

The original proposition is a major challenge but it can unify EU.

Politicians relate to Politics of Fear.

Voters relate to Politics of Dignity

Even such a serious inquiry produces moments of truth and humanity.

We need to work our self/selves to make change.

Core Values (like attending to Basics of Life, Belonging, Self-Expression, and Respect for Life-Giving Order) underlie the possibilities for positive change.

~

The concluding reframe of the proposition helped us to discover how the Politics of Dignity can counter the politics of fear when both Courage and Respect are practised by people – especially when they combine their role as Voters with their role as Hosts.  Individuals, associations/organizations, communities, cities and nations all play roles in enabling The Politics of Dignity to trump the politics of fear by respecting refugees, migrants and voters.

(And since we completed this inquiry 6 weeks ago, the steadfastness of Angela Merkel to enact a Politics of Dignity in the face of mounting difficulties seems to embody the qualities of Courage, Dignity and Respect.)

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If we are willing to consider the city as the human hive, then how would we locate the four internal roles and one external role that enable its survival and ability to thrive?

Integral City GPS Locator Compass Locating Smart – Strategy Locator: Inquiry, Navigating, Meshworking Locating Resilient – Context Locator: Eco, Emergent, Living … Integral Locating Integral – Integral Locator – Consciousness, Culture, Care, Capacity Locating Power – Evo Locator – evolutionary impulse/drive/energy

Integral City GPS Locator Compass
Locating Smart – Strategy Locator: Inquiry, Navigating, Meshworking
Locating Resilient – Context Locator: Eco, Emergent, Living … Integral
Locating Integral – Integral Locator: Consciousness, Culture, Care, Capacity
Locating Power – Evo Locator:  evolutionary impulse/drive/energy

And how would we notice if our Human Hive were a Smart City or a Resilient City or what I propose as the Integral City?

I offer a tool to assist us to see how the fractal system patterns have evolved and operate. This tool is an Intelligence Compass for the Human Hive – a kind of GPS for the city. You’ll notice this GPS has unique Intelligence points on it – and in fact has four GPS locators on it – they move and scale independently from and interdependently with one another.

This GPS represents the early technology for the human hive that will one day evolve into something as elegant as the bees have evolved in their amazing dance. Traditional cities have not needed this compass technology because they have been able to function with low tech solutions unmediated by high tech supports. But today, few cities in the world do not have some Smart technology driving human behavior – if only and especially the endemic smart phone. But for now I will focus primarily on the relationship between the Smart, Resilient and Integral Cities.

In the next blog we will start with pointing out instructions for the Smart City.

(This blog is one of a series on Waking Up the Human Hive Beyond the Smart, Resilient City to the Integral City – thinking notes for a keynote speech at IDG’s IT Smart Cities Conference, September 23, 2015, Amersfoort, NL.)

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The Human Hive has many lessons to learn from the honey beehive.

Honeybee Hive

Honeybee Hive

Some years ago I was introduced to the biomimicry magic of the beehive and was fascinated to learn that apis mellifera –  the honey bee – has figured out a system that enables Smart behavior that not only produces energy for the functioning of the hive –  but Resilient inter-ecological action that enables renewable resources for the entire eco-region of the hive.

Paleo-biologist, Howard Bloom, describes these four roles of the bee hive in terms of systems performance that is modulated by what many are now calling the “hive mind”. Like all Smart Cities the bees have developed code that communicates resource data – like modern millennials they prefer a dance-rap code to a digital or spoken mode. They choreograph their Big Data information on a figure 8 design at the door of the hive. Like all Resilient Cities, the bees have measured their Eco footprint and figured out how much energy a hive of about 50000 bees needs to produce for survival – about 20 kg of honey per year.

The beehive is organized so that 90% of the hive are Forager-Producers – who have the job of foraging for nectar and pollen in the eco-region of the hive. They fly out, find a patch of flowers and return to the hive with both bountiful samples of the harvest and dance the information for other bees to locate it (with coordinates matched to distance from hive, angle of the sun, type of flower, maturity of flower, etc.). With 90% of the bees attending to this duty – the dance soon becomes a rave.

Meanwhile there is a special contingent of bees who have been given different roles to play – complementary to the Forager-Producers. These are the Diversity Generators – and they make up about 5% of the hive. It is their job to go anywhere the Producing Foragers DO NOT go. As a result they return to the hive with harvests from different flowers and therefore a different dance – let’s say a clog dance instead of rap rock n roll??? While most of the hive is preoccupied with the success of the Forager-Producers, the Diversity Generators are for the most part ignored. (Do you ever feel like that in your work – no one ever appreciates what you do???)

In order to fully appreciate the system of the beehive, we must stand back a little from the dance programs of the Forager-Producers and Diversity Generators and observe what the Resource Allocators and the Integrators are doing. Altogether these 2 roles are a very small percentage of the hive performed by mature bees and the wisdom of the hive mind.

The role of the Resource Allocators is to reward performance of the Forager-Producers and Diversity Generators. They measure the returning harvest loads and reward the foraging-producing bees with “Bee Juice” proportional to their performance. 100% load receives a 100% reward. In the background the Integrators check out how the hive is doing in manufacturing the annual goal of 20 kg of honey.

Bees Knees Pollen Harvest

Bees Knees Pollen Harvest

Sounds like a good system yes??? But what happens when Forager-Producer bees keep returning to the same patch of flowers? Sooner or later they deplete the patch – and the Resource Allocators reduce their rewards accordingly – from 75% to 50% to 30% and finally to 0!! And with the recent EU experience of risk/reward scenario analysis – what happens to bees who are cut off from the expected rewards of their non-performing efforts?? You guessed it – they get depressed. How do we know? We can measure depression in bees by the drop in their pheromones!!

But there is a benefit to this downturn in energy/performance of the Forager-Producer bees. It means that finally the hard-working Diversity Generators can finally be noticed. Because they have never stopped returning to the hive and doing their little clog dances. And when the poor depressed Forager-Producers have given up on their big party, they finally can take notice that another “hearty-party” is going on with the returning Diversity Generators. A few depressed Forager-Producers take notice and follow the information dance and discover the DG’s new location for nectar and pollen resources. When these newly motivated Forager-Producers return, they stir up the old party pheromones once again and the Forager-Producers fly off in pursuit of new harvests.

The Resource Allocators are happy, the Integrators are on target and the hive system survives and even thrives – not just because its internal conditions for wellbeing are met, but because the external conditions of the eco-region have also been supported by pollinating the producing plants – thus ensuring a variety of renewable resources for the next year.

And in nearby beehives the same system is being practiced, in competition with our exemplar hive. This ensures the evolution of optimal variations in the bee species that allow for adaptation and mitigation of changing life conditions for apis mellifera. (This may be what is going on with the hives that survive Colony Collapse Disorder while others don’t.)

Thus, it appears that the honey bees have devised a true metabolic economy that actually catalyzes and supports an integrated ecology following the rules of complexity.

(This blog is one of a series on Waking Up the Human Hive Beyond the Smart, Resilient City to the Integral City – thinking notes for a keynote speech at IDG’s IT Smart Cities Conference, September 23, 2015, Amersfoort, NL.)

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