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Cynefin Education Retreat 2023 – Recordings and virtual reflections


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Our upcoming Cynefin Retreat in Wales from 19-22 April 2023 will focus on the theme of education through the lens of complex adaptive systems. This theme is an invitation to explore the possibilities, challenges and dynamics of lifelong learning, unlearning and re-learning in the context of complexity. We intend our definition of education to include all stages and forms of lifelong learning both formal and informal.

This Retreat is being held in person in Wales  –  click here for full details of the residential Retreat (including theme and faculty). However, for those who cannot join in person, we are offering a package of recordings of the key plenary sessions, supported by reflection channels and meetings with the Cynefin Co team.

Please note:

  • This virtual option is not a fully interactive Virtual Retreat as we have run in previous years. Rather, this is a light-touch opportunity to watch the key plenary sessions after the event and reflect on the themes and insights in two Zoom meetups..
  • Retreat recordings will be released as soon as possible after the Retreat to allow participants time to view the videos before engaging in the reflective streams.

What's included

Included in this offer:

  • Video recordings of all plenary sessions including Eagles inputs and group reflections across the 2.5 days of the Retreat (8 recordings, 6-8 hours total)
  • Access to SenseMaker collectors to contribute your thoughts and reflections 
  • Two Zoom reflection sessions (each repeated with two time options to accommodate different geographies) in which the group and Cynefin team will reflect together on what is coming up for us from the recordings.
  • A dedicated Slack channel for virtual participants to discuss the Retreat as they view the recordings and reflect together.

Reflection sessions (Zoom)

These Zoom reflection calls offer an opportunity for live discussion of the themes from the livestreams, with some of our Cynefin Co team.
  • Wednesdays, 15 May and 24 May
  • Time options: (sessions repeat am and pm)
    • 8:00am UK | 9:00am EU | 3:00pm Singapore | 7:00pm New Zealand
    • 4:30pm UK | 5:30pm EU | 8:30am Vancouver | 11:30 New York
  • Videos will be released by 1 May, giving 2 weeks to work through the content and individual reflections
Note each session repeats in the morning and evening UK time, to allow for all time zones to engage. The morning and evening sessions on either day will follow the same structure – however as the participants contribute significantly to the content of reflective sessions, each will be unique. You are welcome to join any sessions you like.

These discussions will be recorded and available to view after the time for registered participants.

Eagles (faculty)

Each retreat is stimulated by a faculty, called Eagles, who provide provocative food for thought and whose inputs form a key part of the Retreat recorded content. Our faculties represent different backgrounds and points of view and we deliberately combine academic and practitioner perspectives.

Lene Rachel Andersen

I am an economist, author, futurist, and Bildung activist. After studying business economy for three years, I worked as a substitute teacher before I studied theology. During my studies, I wrote entertainment for Danish television until I decided to quit theology, become a full-time writer, and focus on technological development, big history, and the future of humanity. Since 2005, I have written 20 books and received two Danish democracy awards: Ebbe Kløvedal-Reich Democracy Baton (2007) and Døssing Prisen, the Danish librarians’ democracy prize (2012). Among my books are The Nordic Secret (2017), Metamodernity (2019), Bildung (2020), What is Bildung? (Erasmus+ 2021), and Libertism (2022). I am a full member of the Club of Rome, president of the Copenhagen based bildung lab Nordic Bildung, and initiator of Global Bildung Network, Global Bildung Day, and European Bildung Day.

Jane Booth

Jane Booth is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology and Social Policy at University of Wolverhampton. Her research interests are in co-production and developing community-facing learning in the social sciences. She is part of a collaborative project with University of Bradford called “Dying 2 Talk”: working co-productively with young people and voluntary organizations to co-design resources to prompt conversations about death and dying. She has published journal articles on coproduction and community-based learning. She is module leader for a number of community-based learning modules at University of Wolverhampton.

In her previous role at University of Bradford she developed IMPACT: a volunteer ‘bank’ for social science students. Students also worked with voluntary sector organizations and service users to co-produce activities for people with mental health issues which formed the basis of a community event. This project resulted in her being awarded the 2017 Teaching Award at University of Bradford. Jane worked in the voluntary sector for a number of years post PhD, including managing the “Women in Governance” project in Southwest London to get women from disadvantaged backgrounds involved in decision-making, and managing a project for a national autism charity, supporting parent carer forums to work with Local Authorities to ensure better outcomes for children with disabilities.

Caryn Vanstone

Caryn’s work focuses on adaptive culture and performance change in global organisations, non-profits and small institutions, and UK Government Departments and Agencies. She is most often brought in by companies when they have some kind of ‘shock’, or are instigating a major strategic change, resulting in the need to profoundly shift mindsets, patterns of behaviour, or cultural norms. She helps them to not only look at themselves in a new way, but to co-create generative and life-giving ways to move forward with energy and purpose.

Her academic community is now Exeter University Business School, where she is a Faculty member, supervising and teaching on the MBA and MSc in Social Entrepreneurship, in the field of ecological, adaptive approaches to leadership, innovation and culture with a focus deep resilience, drawing on the beauty of the natural world and ecosystems as inspiration. After a patchy relationship with education in her teens (preferring surfing, gardening and beach-bumming), she returned to education in 1997, achieving an MSc (Distinction) in Organisation Consulting in 1999.

About the Cynefin Company

The Cynefin Company (formerly known as Cognitive Edge) was founded in 2005 by Dave Snowden. We believe in praxis and focus on building methods, tools and capability that apply the wisdom from Complex Adaptive Systems theory and other scientific disciplines in social systems. We are the world leader in developing management approaches (in society, government and industry) that empower organisations to absorb uncertainty, detect weak signals to enable sense-making in complex systems, act on the rich data, create resilience and, ultimately, thrive in a complex world.

Cognitive Edge Ltd. & Cognitive Edge Pte. trading as The Cynefin Company and The Cynefin Centre.


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