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Viewing entries tagged with 'creativity'

Putting a bit of fun into funding?

Posted by Philip Patston on 26 July 2010, 9:52 pm in , , ,

At Diversityworks Trust we take a wider view of "creativity" than just arts and culture. For example we are interested in how creativity can be used for benefit across several sectors, including the arts, education, business and social/community sectors, and our work at any given time may span more than one. Our issue is that funding streams are usually so narrow that any hint of a project crossing streams is seen by funders as a reason to say no, because it doesn't fit one particular stream's criteria.

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Rights versus competence - two very different things

Posted by Philip Patston on 16 July 2010, 1:07 pm in , , , , ,

Freelance journalist Karl du Fresne's recent blog post continues a theme he began in a column in The Dominion Post in February 2008, where he wrote that "a law change requiring intellectually disabled workers to be paid the legal minimum wage was a triumph of human rights ideology over common sense."

So, what's his latest blog about – the inappropriateness of an ideological and statutory change, or the incompetence of one of NZ's largest service providers to competently and progressively respond to that change? I think he is confusing the two and I'm not sure whether he's intentionally doing that – in order to try and argue the point – or not.

His argument as it stands could be like saying we shouldn't allow women to vote because some choose not to; or we shouldn't allow same-sex marriages because some will end in divorce. Based on the democratic capitalistic system we are all beholden to, the repeal of the DPEP Act was consistent with the notion of a fair and just society.

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Diversity helps creative thinking

Posted by Philip Patston on 30 June 2010, 11:22 am in , , , , , ,

DIVINQ stands for Diversity Inquiry. It is an online and offline process, designed by Philip Patston, for young people and open-minded adults, who want to create space for a light-hearted and fun yet meaningful and exploratory conversation. The conversation aims to generate empowerment, understanding and self-acceptance by encouraging creative thinking about values, beliefs, assumptions, diversity, human rights and a myriad of other things. No DIVINQ is ever the same.

We are looking for schools, youth organisations, businesses, government departments and community groups who are interested in doing DIVINQ - watch the video and get in touch.

[youtube="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoQSw_9IdTY"]

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Dreaming of better MP stories

Posted by Philip Patston on 15 June 2010, 1:17 pm in , , ,

On Sunday afternoon while discussing with friends the week's political credit card revelations and other minor happenings, I said that anyone who volunteers for political office proves, by the act of volunteering, that they shouldn't be a politician.

That night I dreamt that I had been elected MP for Wellington. I saw myself on the streets of the capital city, being congratulated by people young and old. They assured me I would make a difference, change the world and watch lots of porn.

Actually I made up the bit about the porn, but the rest really happened – it was a perplexing dream.

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Brainless categorisation and creative inclusion

Posted by Philip Patston on 1 June 2010, 12:40 pm in , , , , , , ,

Two high profile news stories caught my eye last week. First, radio station The Edge's "Hug a Ginga Day" and then World Cup ambassador Andy Haden's "darkies" comment.

Both have fuelled debates in the media, as well as the lounges and lunch rooms of the nation. The arguments ranged from accusations of racism and even terrorist intent, to justifications of harmless fun and political correctness. Mitigations have come thick and fast: the use of similar terms like "honky" for Europeans and the commonplace acceptance of blonde jokes make ginga-hugging and darkie-calling okay.

I'm not going to wade into the dialectic exercise of deciding whether either were right or wrong — to be frank, I think both debates are trivial in the scheme of things. What interests me is that both issues exemplified our obsession with characterising ourselves and each other visually and, specifically, by reference to colour.

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Do the big thinking first

Posted by Philip Patston on 25 May 2010, 10:15 pm in , ,

From my experience of seeding initiatives over the past 20 years, here are what I think are key to creating a solid foundation to a new entity or strategy:

  • A clear vision, mission and aim – what change in society is envisioned and how will that be achieved?

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I need your help get to New York to change the world!

Posted by Philip Patston on 3 May 2010, 8:14 pm in , , , ,

On 1 May my proposal for Performing the World 2010: Can Performance Change the World? (PTW 2010) was accepted. The conference received over 200 proposals and I have been picked to be part of the diversity and passion of social change and performance from all over the world. I need to raise about $12000 for the trip to New York.

The sixth Performing the World conference will be held in New York City from Thursday, September 30 through Sunday, October 3, 2010. My presentation will be a talk and workshop punctuated by performance with Tony Lewis, aiming to demonstrate a more dynamic and constructive social paradigm and recognise diversity as more than characteristics like gender, race, disability and sexuality. Participants will leave with a new understanding of our natural synergy of similarity and difference, uniqueness and commonality that exists in all people, in all places, at all times.

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The conversation for change - are you part of it?

Posted by Philip Patston on 22 April 2010, 10:51 am in , ,

In his Venus Project lecture last week, Jacque Fresco questioned society's values, assumptions, beliefs, even language. Why do we get upset about swear words, when we don't even mean what the words mean (bullshit has nothing to do with shit from bulls)? Laws are made when humans don't know how to fix a problem. Politicians were relevant 100 years ago, but now they do what machines could do more efficiently.

This kind of thinking has changed what I do in my work on a day to day basis. I used to run training workshops; now I find myself mainly facilitating exploratory conversations. I can't honestly say to a client, "I know exactly what your staff need to know about diversity," because what they need to know is changing so quickly.

All people really need to know now is how to work out what changed since they left work last night. And that may be as simple or complex as a conversation about what people who change their gender have in common with conjoined twins.

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Mr, Ms ... or both?

Posted by Philip Patston on 8 April 2010, 3:51 pm in , ,

Creative Collide

Written for The Big Idea | 7 April 2010

Gender fluidity, androgyny and intersexuality are going to happen whether we like it or not. Can we get through this next phase of diversity with a bit less head-banging, resistance and angst than we have in the past? Continued over at The Big Idea »

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A creative learning vision

Posted by Philip Patston on 25 March 2010, 5:47 am in , , , ,

Creative Collide

Written for The Big Idea | 25 March 2010

It's the year 2150. Two generations have passed since a time in New Zealand history where politicians and bureaucrats tried to control the education of children and young adults by making them go to school, imposing fines if they don't, and insisting they learn certain things.

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