Blog

27
Oct

DATA2GO.NYC | Visualization Challenge


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There is a new way to measure what matters in New York City! Measure of America and Humantific are delighted to announce the DATA2GO.NYC | Visualization Challenge.

In this challenge we invite specialists in the exploding information design and data visualization fields to use the unique dataset made available through the just launched DATA2GO.NYC website. The goal is to create informative and beautiful visualizations that help to illuminate strengths or challenges in New York City neighborhoods and how they shape the lives, choices, and opportunities of the people who live there.

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16
Oct

Humantific leading BRAINBOOM at IED

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Humantific CoFounder Elizabeth Pastor will be back at Institute for European Design [IED] next week leading BRAINBOOM a customized innovation skill-building experience created for incoming graduate students by Humantific in collaboration with IED leaders.

Building on the theme of New Visions, New Leaders, we have redesigned orientation in the form of a cross-department skill-building experience. At IED incoming graduate students from multiple departments now experience orientation together as a foundational skill-building workshop!

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29
Sep

Elizabeth Pastor at Mexico Conference

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On Thursday October 1st Humantific CoFounder Elizabeth Pastor will be giving a talk on SenseMaking for ChangeMaking at “3er Coloquio Nacional de Investigación para el Diseño” conference in Mexico City.

We are seeing rising interest in SenseMaking and ChangeMaking throughout Latin America.

For more information on the “3er Coloquio Nacional de Investigación para el diseño” conference go here!

Humantific has been integrating data and information visualization into purposeful Strategic Cocreation for more than ten years. To do that we utilize and share with our clients a much broader innovation enabling toolset than is typically found in the current evolution of the data visualization and design thinking communities.

Our “secret innovation enabling sauce” is the hybrid combination of advanced cocreation skills combined with deep visual sensemaking capacity.

Related:

See Humantific Case Studies!

Humantific at City of Austin

Humatific leads BRAINBOOM in Madrid

 

 

 

10
Jul

Innovation-Making Not Just Decisions

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We were delighted to see the recent news that Bloomberg Philanthropies has launched the “What Works Cities Initiative” a three-year, $42 million (USD) effort to support mayors and local leaders in 100 mid-sized U.S. cities with the goal of helping city leaders “use data and evidence in decision-making”.

The orientation towards “decision-making” (convergent thinking) is one that is often seen in the still emerging civic innovation arena today. As innovation practice leaders we notice that such terminology is not exactly on-target from a methods and skills perspective. As practioners working with organizational leaders everyday we recognize that decision-making and innovation-making are not the same thing. Lets not assume they are. Decision-making is only one part of the changemaking/innovation cycle.Continue Reading..

02
Jul

Chief Civic Innovation Officer Skills

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Civic innovation is a subject that is near and dear to us at Humantific and we digest a lot of material being generated in the media on a regular basis. There is no question that interest in the subject of civic innovation continues to rise. As practitioners working in the real world with client organizations we don’t always get a chance to comment on everything we see in the media.

We do see momentum building towards a better understanding of the many challenges surrounding civic innovation and thats good news. As various interest groups weigh in to contribute perspectives the landscape of what is known and what is in progress, ie not yet resolved becomes more clear.

Often being presented under different themes, one common thread across many civic innovation initiatives are the stated goals of achieving/building adaptability, agility, flexibility, resilience, fluency, fluxability, adaptive capacity. As an objective this is not so different from many large business organizations today operating in a continously changing world.Continue Reading..

11
Jun

Accelerating Civic Innovation


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Building on our work in progress Humantific CoFounder GK VanPatter shares insights on operationalizing civic innovation capacity building today. Humantific is proud to be a founding member of HumanCities Collaborative a new multi-firm consortium created to help civic leaders operationalize human-centered civic innovation in tangible, understandable and scalable ways. Continue Reading..

04
May

Workshop: Making Sense in Madrid

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Humantific CoFounder, Elizabeth Pastor, will be giving a public Visual SenseMaking workshop Tuesday, May 5th, at Teamlabs in Madrid.

All are welcome. This is an introductory workshop to the subject of Visual SenseMaking!

For those who might not know: Visual SenseMaking is not graphic facilitation! Come and learn more about how Humantific does what it does to help organizational leaders make sense of complex situations and convert complexity to innovation fuel.

29
Apr

Is GDP Deadsville?

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We were delighted to see Georgia Levenson Keohane’s “Is GDP Dead? post in the “Weekly Wonk” on April 16, 2015 as it very much reflects the paradym shift of focus that has been front and center in the Measure of America series since its first publication in 2008.

Measure of America pioneered shifting the focus in the United States from asking the old Gross Domestic Product (GDP) oriented question of “How is the economy doing?”  to the more relevant human centered question of today: “How are people doing?”.  Authored by Sara Burd-Sharps and Kristen Lewis Measure of America is widely recognized as a ground-breaking initiative.

Momentum continues to build around many dimensions of the social changemaking movement and its great to see others picking up on and extending this significant human centered paradym shift around how we look and see societies today.

Of course using more human centered viewing lenses tends to change the picture of how well the United States is really doing. That data-driven change of perspective will hopefully continue to help drive change at the level of city, state and federal governments.

From the Humantific perspective, what is often missing from articles such as “Is GDP Dead?” is mention of what happens after the new data-driven sensemaking pictures have been created. After significant challenges have been unearthed how are they to be addessed? We know from our real-world experience that simply putting new data-driven pictures in front of leaders is, most often, not by itself enough to drive real change that sticks.

As part of this movement leaders are beginning to realize that “Asking the right questions” is useful but no where near robust enough. Awareness is rising in the social change arena that without cocreated changemaking the best of data-driven intentions will often fall short. Linked together SenseMaking and ChangeMaking can provide the robust , adaptable and learnable tools to get the job done.

Today the goal of the data-driven social progress movement has many permuations but generally drives towards creating a more human-centered, life-centered world in the present and for future generations. It is a SenseMaking and ChangeMaking movement that Humantific is happy to be part of…:-)

Ten Key Quotes from Is “GDP Dead?”:

The Old Way of Seeing:

1. “Gross Domestic Product (GDP); what has become the official, if flawed, measure of a nation’s standing in the global economy.”

2. “By focusing exclusively on economic growth, GDP misses – or worse still, externalizes –the costs and value of a number of critical elements of well-being…”

The New Way of Seeing:

3. “a new trove of data offer[s] a holistic snapshot of the health of societies across the world.”

4. “…the [Social Progress Index] SPI offers a rigorous, granular and more meaningful alternative to the gospel that is Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

5. “The United States, the world’s wealthiest country in GDP terms, ranks 16th in “social progress.” Compared to our economic peers, we underperform on a number of dimensions, particularly those related to health: life expectancy, premature deaths from diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular and respiratory failure, fatal car accidents, and even maternal and infant mortality rates.”

6. “This year marks the 25th anniversary of the first UN Human Development Report, created by Mahbub ul Haq and Nobel Laureate Amartya Sen and informed by Sen’s work on human capabilities and positive freedom.”

7. The HDI has also laid the groundwork for a number of different approaches to measuring quality of life, among them, the OECD Better Life Index, gauges of happiness, and important assessments sustainability, among them the Sustainable Society Index.

8. “…it is important to note that “social progress” does not always correlate with higher GDP—sometimes even when we get richer, things can get worse.”

9. “The SPI is a measure of inclusivity and distribution; as with other alternative indices, a country cannot improve its progress score by simply boosting GDP.”

10. “The SPI is also part of a larger revolution – across business, civil society, and government – to measure what matters. Asking the right questions is a critical step towards getting us to better answers and social outcomes, which would be progress indeed.”

Related:

Humantific at Gates Foundation

Civic Innovation Today/ Tomorrow

Portrait of Marin

 

 

 

 

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09
Mar

Humantific at City of Austin

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The Humantific Academy team is delighted to be back in Austin Texas working with the forward thinking City of Austin’s Civic Innovation Team on building adaptable civic innovation leadership capacity.

Many cities are realizing that there is a role for city governments in inspiring, supporting and leading innovation in their local communities. One result is significant interest from city government leaders in acquiring next generation innovation leadership skills for the specific context of complex civic challenges.

In Texas the City of Austin is moving rapidly to become a civic innovation leader. Within the City of Austin government multiple groups are enrolled in Humantific’s Complexity Navigation Program. In this unique hybrid program we combine the best aspects of Design Thinking, Applied Creativity Thinking and Information Visualization.

These are advanced participatory innovation leadership skills that allow graduates to help others navigate all kinds of fuzzy complex internal and external civic challenges without preconceived outcome assumptions. These next generation innovation skills benefit from the integration of data/information visualizations and other forms of up-front sensemaking.

If you are a civic innovation leader and you would like to chat with us regarding your innovation leadership capacity building challenges feel free to send us an email: kickitup (at) humantific (dot) com.

Related:

09
Mar

Civic Innovation Today/Tomorrow

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We were delighted to see this useful Civic Innovation overview document published recently by the California Civic Innovation Project.

Authored by Alissa Black and Rachel Burstein “What Civic Innovation Looks Like Today and Tomorrow” contains many insights into the subject revealing its various complexities in progress. We would highly recommend this overview document to our readers.

Humantific is deeply involved in the civic innovation arena and what we see generally speaking is significant interest from numerous organizations in onboarding new forms of civic innovation leadership skills.Continue Reading..