Evolving the Field – Part 1

By |2023-08-25T21:31:12+00:00August 25th, 2023|Categories: Process, Thinking|

The excerpt below comes from the final chapter of our book, The Integrative Design Guide to Green Building: Redefining the Practice of Sustainability. This chapter foreshadows where we were headed then and speaks to what it is we are really working on now. A TRANSFORMATIONAL PROCESS The bottom line is that we need to change the field of development. In the bigger picture we need to change the way that human beings inhabit the planet. The good news is that our experience has taught us that the process of integration is by nature a transformational process. Recently we went back through our work history to identify those projects that were truly successful—that is, those that achieved higher-order sustainability goals on time and in budget. [...]

Does LEED add Value to your Projects?

By |2023-08-25T18:09:03+00:00August 25th, 2023|Categories: Process|

In your previous experience with LEED has it added value to the project beyond attaining the owner’s goal of achieving certification and receiving a plaque? Or in your previous experience has LEED felt like more of a paper shuffling exercise with a convoluted set of rules and requirements? We hold the strong conviction that LEED has the potential to add considerable value to the project’s design if engaged with the right mindset and process. An integrative process entails a deliberate attempt on the part of the design team to examine the interrelationship between the building’s various system in an attempt to optimize the performance of the whole. This examination can often yield reductions in first costs as well as operating costs but examines value [...]

Exploring New Project Possibilities through a Beginner’s Mind: Omit the Checklist

By |2022-03-01T15:28:49+00:00February 25th, 2022|Categories: Process, Project, Story, Thinking|

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.” - Shunryu Suzuki Every day, every week, month and year we’re given a clean slate. Every day is a day to start anew. It’s normal to fall into habitual ways of doing things, we all do it. When we catch ourselves defaulting to our old modes of thinking, it provides us with an opportunity to create something new. Of course, some tasks, such as brushing our teeth, require less of us and don’t necessarily need our full attention, while others require us to show up wholeheartedly. But, what if we tried using our other hand to complete this everyday task? How would this change our thinking, our perspective? Now, [...]

Energetic Fields

By |2021-10-19T17:41:42+00:00July 7th, 2021|Categories: Process, Thinking|

"Every thought, action, decision, or feeling creates an eddy in the interlocking, inter-balancing energy fields of life. In this interconnected universe, every improvement we make in our private world improves the world at large for everyone." - David Hawkins Did you ever arrive at a meeting late and when you walked into the room you sensed something terrible had been discussed and the room felt heavy? In the same vein, have you ever arrived late at a meeting and felt you had just missed an amazing breakthrough and that everyone in the room felt up and there was a general positive vibe in the room? Have you ever felt either of those energies without ever having heard a word spoken? If you have, like most [...]

Manifesting Your Project

By |2021-07-05T19:57:43+00:00July 2nd, 2018|Categories: Process, Project, Thinking|

Your project is far more than an amalgamation of materials and systems. It is a physical manifestation of your values, of what you really care about. Its design and construction sets the stage for much of what it becomes and serves over its lifetime. Its effects will extend well beyond the people who design, construct and inhabit it. It can contribute to the ecological health of the place it inhabits. It can serve to enrich the community, the watershed and the larger systems that support and enable it to exist. It can be experienced as more than an enclosure for people to be sheltered by focusing on its larger purpose and greatest potential. Just like each one of us, every project should be manifested [...]

Regenerating Your Community

By |2018-08-07T20:25:51+00:00April 4th, 2018|Categories: Learning, Process, Thinking|

Every community is entirely unique. Each is distinctive. This work is about exploring, understanding and evolving that distinctiveness, so that members of each community can deepen their understanding of the unique essence of their particular place . . . and to see that essence as the core instrument for developing any community’s quality of life. In other words, such a regenerative process aligns community members (and project teams, when applicable) around what makes that community singular in a way that can grow the community’s viability and vitality indefinitely. An effective regenerative and integrative process invites community members (and design team members, again when applicable) to serve as authentic co-creators: they co-create and own any given program or project’s purpose, rather than being told what [...]

Regenerating Place: Whole-Systems Design and Planning

By |2018-04-03T20:08:33+00:00April 2nd, 2018|Categories: Learning, Process, Project|

Spillian Workshop #2: Goal-Setting and Initial Concept 30 April – 02 May 2018 Spillian is a 33 acre historic estate, built by the Fleischmanns Yeast Family in the 1880’s as part of a summer retreat. Crowned by a museum-quality stick style mansion, embraced by the Catskills Forest, it now is the home of a center created to help people imagine past what they think is possible. 7group has been engaging with the place and its current owners to develop a master plan. Join us as we co-create the plan. As Spillian continues their master planning effort aimed at guiding its future evolution, all those interested in learning how to engage regenerative design and development are invited to participate in an extraordinary workshop series that will be [...]

Creating Regenerative Processes

By |2018-03-16T11:08:53+00:00March 13th, 2018|Categories: Process, Project, Story|

This post is an excerpt from the book Regenerative Development and Design: A Framework for Evolving Sustainability by our friends and colleagues at Regenesis Group. The book presents a coherent process for applying regenerative thinking to any project through a series of principles and premises you can use to evolve your work. It is a wonderful compliment to Carol Sanford's books as it presents some of the same frameworks but applies them more from an ecological rather than a business perspective. The specific examples in the book really ground the work in the realities of development and design projects. One of our projects, Lion's Gate Secondary Wastewater Treatment Plant in Vancouver, BC, is featured in this excerpt. Changing outcomes requires a new process; changing the process [...]

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