CCAFS-ILRI Workshop 'Achieving more impact through connecting, engaging and learning with communities and other key actors'

18-19 March 2013
Bodega Bay Lodge, Davis, CA
Back to the public agenda
Social Reporting Framework

  • To explore innovative new partnerships that create synergies to improve the potential development impact of climate change and agricultural research
  • To showcase past and on-going participatory work and experiences from CCAFS and the wider CGIAR
  • To develop ways in which participatory (social learning) approaches could inform and improve current and future CCAFS work
  • To discuss how these approaches can help us to scale up, accelerate impact and improve delivery of outcomes

Organizers' Agenda

The 2013 Science Meeting runs from the afternoon of 18 March and all day on 19 March. One day (the afternoons of 18/3 and 19/3) will be devoted to participatory work. The morning of 19/3 will involve a number of parallel sessions on other key topics.

Day 1 - Understanding New Ways of Approaching SLOs to Effect Behavioural Change

Process design
Objectives / outputs
Other notes
Welcome and Director’s introduction
(Bruce Campbell)
Short speech (+presentation)
Explain the objectives of the workshop and how it fits in CCAFS overall strategy
We want to move forward from theory to practical examples and suggestions
Introduction of the agenda and participants
(Ewen Le Borgne)
Presentation + reflections about survey

Cloud of life (an adaptation from the river of life)
Get to know each other, surface assumptions and expectations and create a friendly atmosphere
Agenda responds to evaluation of last year's Science Meeting that requested "activities promoting interdisciplinary partnerships and linkages between centers and individuals".
Introduction builds on the biographies circulated in advance.
Cloud of life:
5' presentation
25' drawing and sharing
10' presentation of key insights in plenary
If not enough time, simple presentation from tables on basis of survey
System level outcomes, intermediate development outcomes and the behavioural changes CCAFS is looking to effect
(Philip Thornton)
Explain how the theme of social learning fits under the overall picture with IDOs and SLOs
Building on notes of discussion at last Science Meeting and Penang RinD
Coffee break

Introduction of the (full) CCAFS social learning narrative
(Patti Kristjanson)
Video + buzz + presentation + Q&A
Give a comprehensive overview of the rationale and opportunities behind social learning in climate change work
Provoke reactions from the participants about their mental images re: social learning and get a sense of their initial reaction for that type of work.
Test the video we will have commissioned to see if it is an effective communication means - Who is it for? The plan is to share this with other scientists and to identify who else it could be shared with.
Social learning research experiences (in CGIAR/CCAFS or otherwise)
(Ewen Le Borgne)
Storytelling circles of 8 people to share anecdotes about transformational learning experiences in collective settings - drawing upon personal and professional life experiences
Introduce the first part of Julian Gonsalves stock take of social learning that highlights the long tradition of social learning within CGIAR
Attach and relate the Science meeting ideas to the personal experiences of participants. Dive deeper into assumptions about social learning work and what makes it work or not. Form multidisciplinary circles of experiences to explore these assumptions and experiences
- Get print-outs from the presentation / 1 set for each.
Teasing out key opportunities (and constraints) of these experiences to affect behavioral change
"...Yes and" plenary brainstorming session based on previous session.
Develop a good understanding of where we stand (in CCAFS) and where we think there are opportunities to exploit
Synthesize the previous session to tease out key opportunities and constraints, and perhaps what seems to be new in the latest endeavors (e.g. CCSL, etc).
Sign up sheet for parallel sessions

Day 2 - Working Towards Ways of Integrating Social Learning into Ongoing Activities

Process design
Objectives / outputs
Other notes
Introduction and Recap of Agenda for Day 2
Verbal recap
Welcome to Day 2 and reiterate today's process

Parallel sessions organized and chaired by resource persons

Parallel sessions organized and chaired by resource persons

Organized by individual leaders with support from the social learning facilitation team to a) organize a more participatory process b) include a couple of reflections from the past sessions to integrate work and c) a more collective reflection about the session and its possible follow-up.
To explore in depth current initiatives to improve the development impact of climate change and agricultural research. Topics were solicited from all CCAFS Centre Contact Points and CCAFS team members during January 2013
All parallel session leaders to consider using a social learning approach, to benefit from stronger facilitation design and to contribute some concrete ideas about social learning approaches that CCAFS could undertake.
Coffee break as part of parallel sessions
Final selection of parallel sessions

Parallel sessions: feedback

In-built presentation of results from each session and possible development of a rich picture
Lunch break

Ongoing CCSL activities (All CCSL): sandbox, social differentiation, local innovation, timescales, M&E of social learning, CCSL embryo strategy (Phil & Wiebke)
Short, theatrical, verbal presentations about different aspects of CCSL work, including questions to participants + IDS event.

Presentation of the embryo CCSL strategy
To highlight the depth of work that CCAFS has already done in climate change and social learning (i.e. processes followed and preliminary results) and explore how CCAFS group might invest further in social learning.
Introduce some open questions and leads to pick up.

What else could we mainstream through CCSL?

Someone to bring that group conversation about the future...
Focused conversation:
  • How to achieve SLOs and IDOs better using social learning approaches, generally?
  • Where can social learning help the CCAFS themes in the regions concretely?
  • What are initial steps to take and early wins along the way?
  • Scaling social learning up and out: how to do this?
Regional group discuss integrating ideas that emerged from the parallel sessions: what of these ideas can be integrated into a concrete 'social learning program' in each of the regions?
Recap + prioritization of activities.
To connect social learning with IDOs/SLOs, and develop and prioritize strong ideas on how social learning could concretely take shape and support ongoing or upcoming work
Use Dotmocracy for prioritization and possibly World Cafe for groups

Identify 'low hanging fruits' that could convince nay-sayers or at least give a chance to assess some social learning initiatives in all program regions.

An opportunity to focus on where the untapped potential is, incentives to participate, costs and how they are distributed, lasting partnerships / honest conversation around roles and competencies / where the management responsibility lies, dealing with power asymmetries, accountability mechanisms, how to keep it active and exciting, communications, IPR issues

Each regional group can focus on each of these questions more - and document properly.
Coffee break

Feedback about the focused conversations
Plenary thematic conversation around the 4 questions asked
To get a collective sense of direction in using social learning in CCAFS work

Final collective reflections about the theme, the event and the personal experience
Individual reflections on post-it notes
Reflection in groups of 3-4 about the event
One collective storytelling circle about the theme of social learning and what it means for CCAFS
Collect final impressions about what was achieved with the event
How the overall theme resonated with them, what opportunities - and constraints+workarounds - they really anticipate with this work, how they personally experienced the past 2 days and how it may have helped check their own assumptions and expectations.

Process design explanations

Day 1 PM
  • Welcome & intro: straightforward and keep it as short as possible.
  • Introduction of participants: Participants are around table develop a cloud of life: They draw on a sheet of paper the ground, a comfortable cloud, the sun and what will get them to the cloud. On the ground is their current situation, the questions they have, on the cloud they draw what they hope to achieve with this workshop. The sun represents what they hope CCAFS will achieve (around their personal area of work). The way to the cloud represents what they think might be the best instruments at their disposal to reach the cloud (be it sthg around social learning or otherwise). After they've drawn their sheet they share it among themselves on the table and after they've done that, one person from each person (very briefly) introduces the persons around and the key observations from that table. If not enough time we'll just do simple introductions around tables (or groups of 6 to 8 participants), drawing upon the information from the survey (to be printed out and distributed)
  • SLOs/IDOs etc.: Brief presentations explaining where IDOs and SLOs sit in CCAFS and what seem to be leaps of faith in the CCAFS theory of change with emphasis on some (a.o. behavioral) changes that need to happen in order for CCAFS to achieve SLOs/IDOs - or to progress towards those.
  • Social learning narrative: short introduction by Patti explaining how the upcoming narrative connects with the previous presentation on IDOs/SLOs and on the gaps (or question areas) that we see in the theory of change (which social learning might bring answers for). Then she proceeds with showing (or, if unachieved as yet, narrating) the CCSL narrative. After the presentation (5'), people get to buzz for 5' around the table and share 1-2 insights per table. Collectively we also try to identify who should see this video and how we could make use of it or how we could adapt it further.
  • Social learning research experiences:
    • (5') Ewen introduces this session by pointing to a stack of insights that come from one of the presentations by Julian Gonsalves, as reflections about the social learning process.
    • (55') He invites participants to then split up in 8 groups of 8 (each of them has an appointed facilitator: Ewen, Carl, Wiebke, Phil, Patti, Michael Victor, Blane/Liz, Mark Lundy) and they start sharing their stories or perspectives about their experiences with some or other social learning-type experience, what was positive and negative and what they have taken on to CCAFS (or why they haven't done so). They can start using the stack of insights printed out. The facilitator teases out +'s and -'s and the reasons why there hasn't been more work done in that direction in CCAFS (or in CGIAR or beyond).
  • Teasing out key opportunities (and constraints + suggestions for improvement): The story circle facilitators sum up what was shared by their circles and add to each other account in a 'Yes and...' manner (the basic rule of improvisation theatre which leads to transformation). A group of volunteers works on synthesizing interesting opportunities and constraints/reasons behind little uptake. They prepare a sheet for the next day.

Day 2 AM
This second day may evolve, pending what happens on day 1 - after consultation among facilitators/organizers the night before.
  • Intro: After a short participatory recap from the day before (comfort zones and resolutions - i.e. what participants would do to go back to their conventional 'pet topics' and what they are ready to do in order to invest themselves in the program of the day), the day starts with looking at the picture developed by the volunteer group (10') as well as a number of possible initiatives suggested by Julian as ways forward for CCAFS to invest in social learning. Perhaps some of the recommendations from the stack are also displayed - all of this is just to elicit thinking and stimulate reflections about "what does this mean for CCAFS - where could we go from here?"
  • CCSL work session: This session features short presentations from participants (scattered across the room) intervening one by one to talk loud and clear about what they think social learning should focus on (and what they have done in this respect). They all converge at the centre of the room to form a fishbowl where they discuss possible next steps and invite other participants to join them in the discussion (for another 15'). This illustrates the messy but creative and constructive process of social learning in e.g. a sandbox. This session ends with a very short verbal presentation of what could be featured in the 2013-2018 CCSL strategy of CCAFS by Wiebke and Phil.
  • Parallel sessions:
    These are developed the night before together with the facilitators (for session leaders that are interested) to come up with an interesting participatory process. In the process, the facilitators and session organizers think about interesting questions that have been dug up in the past day or so and could inform these discussions. Finally they agree on a short way to undertake collective reflection at the end of the parallel session to come up with a succinct but crisp summary which also 'talks to the social learning theme' and is partly connected/integrated with other themes. At the onset of these parallel sessions, each session leader organizes a short (30s) elevator pitch to explain what they will be working on and what they hope to achieve at the end. Ideally each group comes up with either a Flipchart sheet or a couple of PPT slides (or more text and pictures on the wiki) to introduce the results of their group work.

Day 2 PM
  • Parallel sessions feedback: Each parallel group introduces their results in 3' and we can take 2 questions max. Each side session owner explains how the conversation will be documented and shared back with the rest of the group if not done yet.
  • Focused regional conversations: This important part happens in five regional groups (one for each region and non-regional participants scattered across them - this can be rearranged later) to discuss the 4 key questions one by one. External participants can either choose to join one regional table, move around from regional table to regional table or form a separate group that ponders the role of external partners for CCAFS's social learning work. Each regional group should bring together some ideas from the parallel sessions which were introduced just after lunch. They should go through all the questions but may want to spend less time on some. Someone from each group should report - ideally a different person for each of the questions raised. They should document their work on the wiki directly - or alternatively on a (set of) flipchart sheet(s).
  • Feedback from focused conversations: At the end of the process we explore the conversation results per question: one documenter from each group briefly explains what was discussed/key opportunities that emerge around each of the questions (max 2 min each). All ideas are put to the wall and participants do a dotmocracy exercise (using round stickers to prioritize ideas, differentiating regional CCAFS staff, other CCAFS staff, other participants) - and we repeat the process 3 times for each question...
  • Final collective reflections: Ask participants to reflect first individually for 3' (about their own personal learning and sense of direction/action/change - and put their impressions on a post it note), for 10' with 2 or 3 other people about the event and put it on a different set of post-its. We invite them all to stick the post-its on respective flipcharts or parts of the wall (for individual reflections and group reflections about the event). Then all participants form one circle and share key insights from their personal experience (briefly) and about the event, and reflect about social learning and what it means for CCAFS and what it encourages the to do in the future.