Applying the Master Code of Care at city level brings together a variety of engaged parties so that established positions play a lesser role. It draws individuals out of their own affairs so that ingrained habits are left at home. The city is dependent on supply areas for most of its basic needs. Making this explicit opens up new ways of taking care of the earth. A city is partly defined by the place, which makes it easier to include taking care of the place in everything. The city is the think, do and socialise bubble not only for people; it is also home to plants and animals and consists of earth and water, architecture and arts, maintenance and waste management. The city as a human hive provides the context for the lifemap scenarios.
Meshworking with lifemaps to contribute to change
Meshworking is a great way to collaborate in order to make a success of multi-stakeholder projects. A key to success is to define overarching goals which unite parties and let people rise above their own interests. A core practice is to include these interests and forge cooperative agreements. One of the lifemap posters, the Compass poster, carries the meshworking process. The lifemap scenarios which use this poster offer stakeholders in a societal programme an opportunity to get acquainted with this approach. As a whole lifemaps are an instrument for the maker to promote the change the lifemap scenarios are about and stand for. While meshweaving with lifemaps, she is on her own journey, to learn more ways to practice living the Master Code of Care and to inspire people to discover the possibilities.
The lifemap scenario 4 Voices in the city working together like bees in a hive aims to enable multi-stakeholder groups in a city to discover and experience the Master Code of Care and to find new ideas and perspective for collaboration. The concept of the 4 Voices and the idea for this scenario came from Marilyn Hamilton, Founder of Integral City. Workshops were organised in cooperation with the Caravan of Unity, an initiative of Co-Creating Europe for peace, democracy and solidarity. During the journey of the Caravan a mixture of online and on location workshops were hosted for London and Findhorn in the United Kingdom, in Klaipeda in Lithuania, Tampere in Finland, and Lisbon in Portugal. Both the experiences and the outcomes created a rich harvest.
Much has been woven into each lifemap: in the building blocks – the poster and stickers – in the mapping and discovery process and in the scenario. The 4 Voices, a core concept from Integral City, and the Doughnut Economics model are introduced, but bits of wisdom from many other sources are part of the lifemaps, too. A host can work with lifemaps without prior knowledge about all this. During a lifemap workshop a lot is touched in people that cannot be grasped immediately. It is important that a host is sensitive to what goes on in the participants and can respond to it in terms of content, process and relationship. Lifemaps are meant to raise awareness at an experiential level. This will manifest itself in various ways: as insights and concrete ideas, but also as experienced feelings or a realisation of not knowing. It is important, that the host can create the conditions through which the full richness comes to the fore.
Getting aquainted with lifemaps through participation
All work with lifemaps is project-based. A project is aimed at the development and validation of a tailor-made scenario and functions as a training-on-the-job. Each (mini-)project embraces all 7 key principles, embedded in the lifemaps. People who want to know more about a particular scenario can get an invitation to participate in one of the running projects. As a participant you are invited to bring in your own key questions or development goals, a city, a big issue, or your workshop or training expertise. In 2022 the focus of the (mini-)projects is on the scenarios: Developing peace, Being young and 4 Voices in the city.
Building on earlier projects and engagements
Former employer, UWV Gegevensdiensten (Social Services), hosted the try-out of the first lifemap for teams. In the years after that, the focus for Lifemaps.NL has been on self-searching, creating lifemap scenarios and trying them out in workshops – always responding to an innovative initiative: as co-author of the book New Business Models, as committed participant and workshop host in the Veerhuis, as ambassador for an inclusive employment market in Werken in Netwerken, together with Inspiration at Work, as an active member of the IHBV group for highly gifted entrepreneurs and as co-creator at Tilburg Municipality of the BOOST013 Workshop. Thanks to the experiences and stimulating collaborations in these projects, lifemaps have become robust enough to go out into the world, journeying from one city to another.