all in one spirit
homeLiteraturLiteratur zu RTSCLiteratur zu Open SpaceLiteratur zu Appreciative InquiryLiteratur zu ZukunftskonferenzenLiteratur zu World CafeLiteratur zu Community BuildingVideosRessourcenGeschichtenVeranstaltungenLinkskontaktImpressum






James D. Ludema, Connie S. Fuller, Thomas J. Griffin


Large group interventions have become an essential component in organization change efforts in many organizations today. They are favored because they include and give voice to greater numbers of stakeholders, promote whole system organizational learning, produce faster and more sustainable change, generate higher levels of commitment from organization members, and achieve business results. All indications are that this trend will continue at an ever-increasing rate as new hybrid forms of large group interventions are developed and tested. The external environment continues to put enormous pressure on organizations to change almost instantaneously, and many of the traditional methods of change implementation (top-down, bottom-up, representative groups, pilot tests, survey feedback) are simply too slow and unable to generate the creativity, innovation, and commitment needed of organizational members.

In the last 20 years or so, a variety of high-involvement, high-velocity large group intervention approaches have been developed, tested, and proven effective. Bunker and Alban (1997) identify twelve methods for whole systems change: Search Conference (Emery & Purser, 1996), Future Search (Weisbord & Janoff, 1995), Real Time Strategic Change (Jacobs, 1994), ICA Strategic Planning Process (Spencer, 1989), The Conference Model (Axelrod, 1992), Fast Cycle Full Participation (Pasmore, 1994), Real Time Work Design (Dannemiller & Jacobs, 1992), Participative Design (Cabana, 1995; Emery, 1995), Simu-Real (Klein, 1992), Work-Out (Tichy & Sherman, 1993), Open Space Technology (Owen, 1992), and Large Scale Interactive Events (Dannemiller & Jacobs, 1992). Add to this list, the Appreciative Inquiry (AI) Summit (Whitney & Cooperrider, 1998).

Drawing their theoretical inspiration from systems theory (von Bertalanffy, 1952; Miller & Rice, 1967), socio-technical systems theory (Emery & Trist, 1960), values theory (Maslow, 1943; McGregor, 1960), social psychology (Lewin, 1951; Katz & Kahn 1978), group dynamics (Bion, 1961), and, more recently, social constructionism (Berger & Luckman, 1967; Gergen, 1994), large group interventions are designed to involve the whole system, internal and external, in the change process (Bunker & Alban, 1997). They are well planned, highly organized, and usually facilitated by outside experts. They have been used effectively to promote innovation and foster change in record breaking time with hundreds of organizations - corporations, non-profits, governments, communities - in a variety of applications, such as organization development, organization redesign, restructuring, strategic planning, visioning, values clarification, process improvement, customer service, global learning, formation of collaborative alliances, and others. Some organizations have even begun to use these large group interventions as a way of managing on an on-going basis.

This article provides a graphic illustration of how two whole system change methodologies - Appreciative Inquiry and Future Search - were combined to shape the strategic direction and organization design for a large, global non-profit organization (American Baptist International Ministries). It begins by providing a brief introduction to Appreciative Inquiry and Future Search. It then moves on to demonstrate how the two methodologies were used to involve over 1200 stakeholders worldwide in helping to shape the strategic future and design of International Ministries. At the heart of this initiative was a three-day "Appreciative Future Search Conference” that brought together from around the world and across cultures and languages over two hundred International Ministries staff, missionaries, and youth to set priorities for the organization’s future. As a result of the event, International Ministries radically altered many of its primary institutional objectives and strategies and dramatically redesigned its organization to advance the new priorities. The article concludes with an examination of the underlying OD values and principles that allow the Appreciative Future Search to achieve its persuasive results.

Appreciative Inquiry

Appreciative inquiry (Cooperrider & Srivastva, 1987) is an OD process which grows out of social constructionist thought and has been applied in multiple settings to management and organization transformation. Appreciative inquiry is based on the premise that OD has reached the end of problem solving as a mode of inquiry capable of generating and sustaining large-system learning and change. The future of OD belongs to methods that can involve whole systems (groups of hundreds, thousands, and even millions in the context of cyberspace) in meaningful conversation to learn, envision, and build mutually desired futures.

Appreciative inquiry distinguishes itself from other OD methodologies by its deliberately affirmative assumptions about people, organizations, and relationships. It focuses on asking positive questions to ignite transformative dialogue and action within human systems. As a method of organizational intervention, appreciative inquiry differs from conventional managerial problem solving. The basic assumption of problem solving seems to be that "organizing-is-a-problem-to-be-solved." The process usually involves: (1) identifying the key problems; (2) analyzing the causes; (3) analyzing the solutions; and (4) developing an action plan. In contrast, the underlying assumption of appreciative inquiry is that organizing is a possibility to be embraced. The steps include: (1) discovering and valuing; (2) envisioning; (3) design through dialogue; and (4) co-constructing the future. In other words, the four phases of an appreciative inquiry include discovery, dream, design, delivery.

This appreciative or "positive” approach to organization change provides some significant advantages over traditional "deficit-based” methodologies (Ludema, Cooperrider, & Barrett, 2000). First, it releases an outpouring of new constructive conversations that refocus an organization’s attention away from problems and toward hopeful, energizing possibilities. Second, it produces forward momentum for change by generating large amounts of positive affect and social bonding - including experiences of hope, inspiration, and the joy of creating with one another. Third, the appreciative approach unleashes a self-sustaining learning capacity within an organization. As organization members learn more and more about what enables their health, vitality and success, they deepen their understanding and strengthen their capacity to put those possibilities into practice on an everyday basis. Fourth, by expanding dialogue about innovative possibilities, equalizing relationships, promoting learning, and providing broad access to decision making, appreciative inquiry creates the conditions necessary for self-organizing to flourish. Finally, appreciative inquiry provides a reservoir of strength for positive change. As organizations inquire ever more deeply into the forces and factors that give them life, they tap into what can be called their "positive core” (Cooperrider & Whitney, 1999). Once an idea or initiative is connected to the positive core, it takes a quantum leap forward toward its eventual realization.

Future Search

Future Search Conferencing (Weisbord & Janoff, 1995) represents a dynamic new way of engaging large groups of stakeholders in strategic planning for the organizations of which they are a part. It uses specific techniques to involve participants in exploring the past and present, creating an ideal future, finding common ground, and choosing the actions that will make that future a reality. Through Future Search, it is possible (1) to bring together people who don't ordinarily meet face-to-face, (2) to allow everyone in the organization to understand the "big picture” before acting "locally,” (3) to create a positive future rather than focus on past problems and conflicts, and (4) to engage all organizational members in taking responsibility for their own behavior instead of trying to change each other.

The framework for a Future Search Conference differs from typical participatory meetings or strategic planning sessions in several ways. First, it involves the whole system. Participants representing a cross section of stakeholders from as many different key constituency groups as possible participate in the event. This means that there is more diversity and less hierarchy than one would ordinarily find in a strategic planning or decision making session. Second, scenarios regarding topics are put into both local and global perspectives. By encouraging participants to think globally before acting locally, shared understanding and greater commitment to act are generated. The range of potential actions is also increased. Third, participants are invited to self-manage their work, and to use dialogue as the main tool for completing their tasks. Finally, participants are encouraged to find "common ground” rather than enter into "conflict management.” This is distinctly different from traditional "problem-solving" approaches to organization change. The focus in the Future Search is to honor differences (rather than try to reconcile them), find points of agreement, and move forward together in constructive action.

IMagine 2010!: An Appreciative Future Search Conference Experience

Green Lake Conference Center, Green Lake, Wisconsin
January, 1999

The room was large, half the size of a ballroom, long and narrow. It was filled with tables, 20 in all. Color markers sat in trays on flip charts next to each table. A raised platform at the front of the room was set up for those who would be speaking to the group. Clustered around each table were eight to ten people of different race, gender, age, and color. Over 30 different languages could be heard among the 200 voices. There was a low buzz that belied the anticipation of what lay ahead. Organizational members from around the globe had come to this place to build their future, together. "IMagine 2010!” was about to begin.

IMagine 2010! was an Appreciate Future Search Conference sponsored by American Baptist International Ministries to engage staff and missionaries living and working worldwide in the creation of a strategic plan for the organization for the new millennium. This conference was a carefully planned event that had its origin nearly a year earlier. It was Phase 2 of a three-part, two-year Appreciative Inquiry process that concluded with significant organizational change and re-design. What follows is a description of how Appreciative Future Search helped International Ministries create their future.

Phase 1 - Discovery

Phase 1 of the appreciative planning process, which was undertaken in 1998, was designed to be a discovery phase. During discovery, members of an IMagine 2010! Planning Task Force, assisted by additional International Ministries staffers, missionaries and supporters, interviewed over 1200 mission partners worldwide. Using the following Appreciative Inquiry protocol, interviewers sought to discover "the best of what is” and "the hopes, dreams, and aspirations” of International Ministries staff and partners.

Appreciative Interview Protocol

1. Tell me a story about when your organization has been at its best. What were you doing? What made that moment great?
2. When has your relationship with International Ministries been at its best? What was your organization doing? What was International Ministries doing?
2. What do you most value about your organization and the ministries you carry out in the world?
3. What do you most value about International Ministries, and about the relationship between your organization and International Ministries?
4. In the light of God’s call to the church to be salt and light, and in the light of the tremendous changes that are taking place in our world, it may be that God is calling us to do new things. What might be some of the new things that God may be calling your organization and International Ministries to do together?
5. What are your three greatest hopes or dreams for enhancing the partnership between your organization and International Ministries?

Information from the interviews was compiled by the Planning Task Force and drawn into a set of 11 "Provocative Propositions.” These Propositions were designed to "stretch the status quo, challenge common assumptions and routines, and suggest real and desired possibilities for the future." The Propositions were used to shape the future of the organization in Phase 2 of the process, the Appreciative Future Search Conference.

Phase 2 - Dream & Design

It was a strong desire of the Planning Task Force to use the Appreciative Future Search Conference to create community within this missionary assemblage. The gathering in Wisconsin was the first of its kind, the first time missionaries from around the globe had been brought together, to the same place, at the same time.

Day One

Day one started after lunch. As they entered the ballroom, participants migrated toward assigned seats at one of the 20 round tables. Seating was specifically designed to bring together people who did not know each other prior to the conference. Participants included some young people of high school or college age fondly referred to as MK's, or Missionary Kids. They, too, were spread throughout the room, one or two at each table. After hearing opening remarks, participants spend the first hour introducing themselves at their tables using an appreciative inquiry protocol similar to the one above. Facilitators then roamed the room with microphones, giving those who wished to share their thoughts, highlights of their discussions, challenges, or excitement with the larger group an opportunity to do so. Those who chose to speak invariably told of how they had been moved by another story at their table. There was a sense of reverence among the participants for each other as they shared stories, and a bond was forming between participants at each table. This bond became a foundation for the sense of community realized by these 200 individuals as they departed the conference at the end of Day 3.

Timelines - Capturing the Past

After a break, participants were asked to individually make notes on memorable personal, local/global, and International Ministries events and trends that, for them, represented milestones or turning points in their work. Participants then transferred reflections onto large pieces of butcher paper that had been placed on long tables around the room. Each piece of butcher paper was divided into three time frames, 1900 to 1960; 1960s and 1970s; and 1980s and 1990s. Each sheet had a theme: Personal, Local and Global, and International Ministries. A fourth sheet was dedicated reflections of the young people in the room.

The room came to life! Nearly 200 people were milling about, passing markers from one to another, and adding their own bits and pieces of information to each sheet. In less than an hour, huge sheets of blank, white butcher paper were transformed into information-packed documents depicting nearly a century of the participants' collective history. The four charts were then hung across one end of the meeting room to create a colorful wall of memories and reflections.

Timeline Wall

1900 - 1960 1960s & 1970s 1980s & 1990s

Local & Global
1900 - 1960 1960s & 1970s 1980s & 1990s

Ministry 1900 - 1960 1960s & 1970s 1980s & 1990s

1900 - 1960 1960s & 1970s 1980s & 1990s

By design, the timeline wall was not debriefed on Day 1. Instead, people were encouraged to study the wall, reflect on it, and let it speak to them personally. The quiet contemplation and whispered conversations left no doubt that the wall spoke volumes to each of the 200 participants about their shared history and purpose.

Day 2

As people reconnected with others at their tables, new kinds of relationships became evident. There was an identity within the table groups that transcended the great diversity represented in the room. The first exercise on Day 2 was to debrief the timeline. Tables were assigned a specific chart to review: Personal, Local & Global, or International Ministries. Everyone was to review the chart prepared by the youth. There were two questions for each table to answer about their assigned charts. The first was, "What story can you tell about us, the folks in this room, by what is on the chart?" The second was, "What connections do you see to other charts?" This exercise brought focus to the themes and events that had shaped International Ministries throughout almost 100 years of history. There was also a keen awareness of the increasing complexity of life as events moved from the 1900-1960 time frame to the present.

As discussions continued at individual tables, there was a perceptible rise in the noise level, a reflection of the increasing energy throughout the room. The exercise was debriefed with the entire room by way of roving microphones. The urgency with which hands were waved for the microphone, the rising pitch of voices calling for a turn, underscored the importance of insights each table had shared.

Mind Maps - Reflecting on the Present

After the break, the format for the conference changed. Participants were divided into three smaller groups (of about 60-70 persons each) and sent off into three separate rooms. In each break-out room, there was one facilitator and representatives of each of the six primary geographical areas represented at the conference: Latin America and Caribe, Europe and Middle East, Africa, South East Asia, East Asia and India, and North America. Participants were asked to sit at tables with others from their region. At one end of the room, a large square of butcher paper (6' x 12') was attached to the wall. This chart had a large circle in the center, into which the words "IMagine 2010!" had been written. The rest of the chart was blank.

After introductions, participants were encouraged to call out trends, which were put onto lines drawn out from the circle on the chart. This collection of trends began the creation of a huge mind map for the group as a whole. Each line coming out from the circle was in a different color until there were so many lines that some colors had to be used more than once. Some trends were stand-alone items coming out from the center, with tiny offshoots representing related trends. Other trends ended up as a subset of larger issues. After 45 minutes of brainstorming, the huge white chart at the end of the room was filled with lines and words and colors representing current and impending issues affecting International Ministries around the world. Prior to breaking for lunch, each person was given seven Avery dots that were color coded to their country; i.e., Africa had red dots, South East Asia, yellow, and so on. The seven dots were to be placed on the mind map by each person according to the trends they felt to be most important.

Mind mapping continued after lunch, in the breakout rooms, but this time it was done by each of the six geographical groups independent of others in the room and of their counterparts in other rooms. Using flip charts that had been placed at each table during the lunch break, with the large mind map as a resource, each group developed a mind map of its own around issues and trends that were of particular importance to their particular country/region. Then, in different colors, each group charted for each trend (1) what was already being doing to address the issue, and (2) what might be done to address the issue in the future.

Groups were allowed a little over an hour to prepare their mind maps. Each regional group then presented its results to other groups in the breakout room to encourage cross-regional understanding. Each breakout room then designated one spokesperson to report a high-level summary of its afternoon experiences to the large group in the ballroom. After the presentations, open discussion was held using two roving microphones. The facilitators could only watch in fascination as participants passionately created common ground. When the positive energy was spent, the workday was brought to a close.

Day 3 - Anticipating the Future

Using information generated over the previous day and a half, as well as the 11 "Provocative Propositions” prepared by the Planning Task Force based on the 1200 interviews conducted in Phase 1 of the process, participants were invited to review, discuss, and strategize a future for the organization. Original small groups at each of the 20 tables were reconvened. Participants were asked to discuss (1) what excited them, compelled them about the 11 Propositions, (2) what was perplexing, unclear, or misdirected, and (3) what they would like to see expanded, enhanced, enriched, or taken on as a completely new priority.

The next step was for this body to rank the Propositions and the new themes according to their strategic importance for the organization. The ranking exercise was significant because it validated the effectiveness and merit of the Appreciative Future Search process. Of the top ten items that emerged from this dialogue process, six were from the original 11 Provocative Propositions. Three of the original 11 were included in the next ten items, and two fell into the bottom one-third of the list. It is interesting to note that the top item on the list was not one of the original Propositions. Had implementation proceeded without the involvement and participation of the "whole system,” it is likely that resonance with and commitment to the plan would have been less than optimal. By demonstrating their willingness and openness to hear the voices of those who would live out the strategies put in place, the Planning Task Force greatly improved the likelihood of success for IMagine 2010!.

When priorities had been established, participants regrouped according to the item about which they felt most passionate. In small groups, suggestions for implementation and specific action initiatives were developed.


The Conference ended with personal reflections on work done over the previous 2-1/2 days, and prayers for the future of International Ministries. While there was an expression of realistic concern that the energy and power generated by this session would be diminished or lost after participants returned to their day-to-day challenges, there was an equal strength of commitment to follow through on the rich insights and suggestions generated by this group of dedicated people. The planners of this session, as well as the participants, were overwhelmed by what they experienced during the conference, and confident that they had the right information as they prepared to move into Phase 3.

Phase 3 - Destiny

The knowledge generated at Appreciative Future Search Conference, combined with that from the 1200 interviews with organizational stakeholders, was used by the Planning Task Force to establish a strategic plan for International Ministries for the first decade of the New Millennium. The plan was written in some 18 different drafts, each of which was circulated (in multiple languages) to stakeholders around the world for input before writing the next draft. The plan reaffirmed a host of current priorities, but also charted a range of new directions for the organization. The most noteworthy of these included: (1) a shift in its identity from an organization that "sends out missionaries” to an organization that links people "from every continent to every continent” in creative and dynamic ministry relationships, (2) a strategic focus on urban centers around the world, and (3) a new and significantly expanded relational approach to fundraising and philanthropy. In addition, extensive organizational re-design work has begun (using a similar Appreciative Future Search approach) to support the new strategic directions.

OD Values and Principles at Work in the Appreciative Future Search

This case illustration demonstrates how Appreciative Inquiry and Future Search can be combined to involve the whole system in creating positive organizational change. A number of important OD values and principles are at work in the Appreciative Future Search approach that deserve mention.

Creating a High-Involvement, High-Participation Organization

Learning theory suggests that people tend to support what they help create (Weisbord, 1987). By involving larger numbers of stakeholders in the change effort, greater, more robust and enduring levels of commitment are produced. Appreciative Future Search through its use of high involvement and participation practices expedites decision making, lessen resistance, and speeds up the overall change process.

Appreciative Future Search conferences involve getting a critical mass of organizational stakeholders together at the same time in the same place to share information, improve relationships, and address important business issues. As few as 30 or as many as 5000 employees have been included in these large group events. The underlying assumption here is that it takes everyone’s knowledge (whole system) to design and enact the desired future. Involving the whole system contributes to the creation of what is referred to as a "common data base.” Inherent in this idea is the belief that the knowledge necessary to change the system already resides within it. Using this common data base, you get a better perspective (knowledge, information, and interdependencies) of the whole system because the critical information owners (those closest to the "field” or "end users”) have been included in the input phase. This knowledge and information is most often critical to the success of any organizational change effort.

Generating Positive Energy Throughout the Organization

Perhaps the most important consequence of an appreciative approach to whole system change is that it releases an outpouring of new constructive conversations that refocus an organization’s attention away from problems and toward positive possibilities. Appreciative Future Search creates a dialogue rich environment in which communication is open, multidimensional, and hopeful. This shifts the energy within the organization from one of finger pointing, blame, and eventual immobilization to one of dynamism, engagement, and excitement about the future. It allows organizational stakeholders to move beyond the recriminations of the past and live into positive guiding image of the future.

Appreciative Future Search is focused on asking positive questions that engage organization members in conversations that foster greater levels of understanding among groups, departments, divisions, and even business units. By promoting greater levels of understanding among different stakeholder groups, an appreciation of the inter-relationships begins to emerge and recognition of their relationship to the whole system develops. Through structured activities, legions of voices can be heard and included without the confusion and discouragement associated with deficit-based approaches. Appreciative Future Search promotes the pursuit of "higher ground” (Whitney & Cooperrider, 1998) on which organization members can create a culture of encouragement and success.

Learning From a Sense of Wholeness

Appreciative Future Search conferences generate a sense of "wholeness” that promotes organizational continuity and reinforces stakeholder’s sense of identity with the larger community or system. "Wholeness” is defined as the state of being complete. It means including everything or everyone together as one entity without exception - a unified body of individuals or system. In Appreciative Future Search, people with common history, or common social or professional interests come together in face to face dialogue to reaffirm or fundamentally transform in direct and personal ways the organization’s vision, mission, and core values.

The coming together of whole systems or communities to work together on common issues or common futures produces tremendous amounts of positive energy, affect, and relational bonding. People experience in very personal ways the ups and downs of joy, hope, inspiration, connectedness, affiliation and empathy as well as at times confusion, discomfit, and differences. This rise and fall of emotion combined with creative thinking and the launching of action initiatives produces what Jacobs (1994) calls "alignment”, what Weisbord and Janoff (1995) call "common ground” or, what Dannemiller (1992) describes as the "one brain, one heart” effect. When these effects are produced, people have a better understanding of how the whole system fits together and in turn can impact it in more profound and efficacious ways.

Accelerating the Rate of Change

Appreciative Future Search accelerates change because it produces involvement throughout the organizational system. Top-down and bottom-up change face the same two major problems: (1) they create resistance to change from those who are not involved in the process, and (2) they take a long time to put the change in place. Changes that "trickle down" from the top or "percolate up" from the bottom often stagnate or get distorted. Appreciative Future Search speeds up the change process by directly engaging the entire organizational system in envisioning, designing, and implementing the change.

Appreciative Future Search conferences accelerate change because they provide more collaborative and democratic (self-governing, voluntary, and flexible) mode of organizing. In these events, the whole system works together to understand, examine, envision, and enact their current realities and future possibilities. The modes of organizing that these type of events represent facilitates the alignment of both individual and organization core values. When individual and organizational values are closely aligned and integrated into organizational change efforts, ownership, commitment, and support for the change is intensified and resistance is minimized.

Achieving Business Results

Appreciative Future Search focuses on relevant and systemic system-wide issues that impact multiple constituencies throughout the organization. Therefore much work is done before, during, and after the event to ensure its success and institutionalize the change. Selecting the right topic for the inquiry is essential so that a critical mass of people has information to share on the subject as well as a strong desire to influence it (Wiesbord & Janoff, 1995). It is recommended that organizations make their most important business issue the focus of the event. Doing so brings relevance and passion to the situation - there is a good reason why we are here. It is also crucial to frame the topic in affirmative language so that the inquiry leads in a positive direction and produces positive results (Cooperrider & Srivastva, 1987).

Appreciative Future Search conferences are highly structured and use efficient processes (individual, group, and system level) to manage the content and achieve the desired outcomes of the event. They use well thought out processes to: foster dialogue, clarify relationships, review organizational history, scan the environment, implement break through thinking, articulate hopes and aspirations, dissect key processes, set direction and envision a new future, create and document action plans, reinforce new behaviors, communicate progress, and follow up. These processes if used effectively become a means to an end (successful change).


Rich, new, and openhearted dialogue techniques are perpetually arising as powerful methods of organizational inquiry that stimulate social learning and collective intelligence. Dialogue and inquiry processes are the hallmark of Appreciative Future Search, and greater efforts must be made to discover how to include more voices in the development, improvement, and execution of organization systems, processes, and practices. The more we as OD practitioners seek to develop and refine these techniques, the more we amplify the creative expression that is needed to heighten organizational learning and spur innovation throughout the system.


Axelrod, D. 1992. Getting everyone involved: How one organization involved its employees, supervisors, and managers in redesigning the organization. Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 28, 499-509.

Berger, P. L., & Luckmann, T. 1966. The social construction of reality: A treatise in the sociology of knowledge. New York: Anchor Books (Doubleday).

Bion, W. R. 1961. Experiences in groups. New York: Basic Books.

Cooperrider, D. L. & Whitney, D. 1999. Collaborating for change: Appreciative inquiry. San Francisco: Barrett-Koehler Communications.

Cooperrider, D. L., & Srivastva, S. 1987. Appreciative inquiry in organizational life. In W. A. Pasmore & R. W. Woodman (eds.), Research in organizational change and development (Vol. I). Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.

Bunker, B. B., & Alban, B. T.(1997). Large Group Interventions: Engaging the Whole System for Rapid Change. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Cabana, s. 1995. Participative design works, partially participative doesn’t. Journal for Quality and Participation, 18(1), 6-9.

Dannemiller, K. D. & Jacobs, R. W. 1992. Changing the way organizations change: A revolution of common sense, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 28, 4, 480-498.

Emery, F. 1995. Participative design: Effective, flexible, and successful, now! Journal for Quality and Participation, 18(1), 6-9.

Emery, M. & Purser, R. E. 1996. The search conference: A powerful method for planning organizational change and community action. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Emery, F. E. & Trist, E. L. 1960. Socio-technical systems. In Churchman and others (Eds.), Management sciences, models, and techniques. London: Pergamon.

Gergen, K. J. 1994. Realities and relationships: Soundings in social construction. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

Jacobs, R. W. 1994. Real time strategic change: How to involve an entire organization in fast and far-reaching change. San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.

Lewin, K. 1951. Field theory in social science. New York: HarperCollins.

Ludema, J. D., Cooperrider, D. L., Barrett, F. J., 2000. Appreciative inquiry: The power of the unconditional positive question. In P. Reason & J. Bradbury, Handbook of action research. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publication.

Katz, D. T. & Kahn, R. L. 1978. The social psychology of organizations. New York: Wiley.

Klein, D. 1992. Simu-Real: A simulation approach to organization change. Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, 28, 566-578.

Maslow, A. H. 1943. A theory of human motivation. Psychological Review, July, 370-396.

McGregor, D. 1960. The human side of enterprise. New York: McGraw-Hill.

Miller, E. J. & Rice, A. K. 1967. Systems of organizations: The control of task and sentient boundaries. London: Tavistock Institute.

Owen, H. 1997. Open space technology: A user’s guide (second edition). San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler.

Pasmore, W. A. 1994. Creating strategic change: Designing the flexible, high performing organization. New York: Wiley.

Spencer, L. J. 1989. Winning through participation. Dubuque, IA: Kendall/Hunt.

Tichy, N. & Sherman, S. 1993. Control your destiny or someone else will. New York: Doubleday.

Von Bertalanffy, L. 1952. General systems theory. New York: Wiley.

Weisbord, M. R. 1987. Productive workplaces: Organizing and managing for dignity, meaning, and community. San Francisco: Jossey-Basss.

Weisbord, M. R. & Janoff, S. 1995. Future search: An action guide to finding common ground in organizations and communities. San Francisco, CA: Berret-Koehler.

Whitney, D. & Cooperrider, D. L. 1998. The appreciative inquiry summit: Overview and applications. Employment Relations Today, Summer.