Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Permaculture Garden[ing] Cities

At the recent Permaculture Diploma Gathering I facilitated a workshop on a proposed Permaculture entry to the Wolfson Prize Garden City competition (referred to earlier here). This emerged from existing discussion on the same subject on a dedicated Facebook group. A summary of the ideas arising from the workshop appears below.

A range of opinions were expressed in the workshop, but the general consensus tended towards the following ideas:

  •  In order to move forward a ‘benign dictator’ was necessary, someone who could collate other efforts and draw on experts. Catch and store energy.
  • Any submission, while multi-authored, should be ‘owned’ by the Permaculture Association as completion entrant.
  • Work on the project should happen on one place – at the moment work was spread across FB, Wiki, Google docs etc this is confusing and creates more work – Integrate rather than segregate. Efficient energy planning.
  • Creating and submitting an entry to the competition must (and would) have benefits beyond the chance to win a prize. Obtain a yield. Each element performs many functions. The yield of a system is theoretically unlimited.
  • Any entry should be ‘open source’, a creative commons, we should encourage other to steal our work – free as in speech and free as in beer (libre & gratis). Fair Share. Redistribute the Surplus. Reinvest the Surplus.
  • We also noted that as a public statement of permaculture it must be good. Work where it counts.
  • Questions of whether a good submission was achievable were raised. Apply Self Regulation and Accept Feedback.
  • With a competition submission date of March 3rd 2014, we must aim to have a complete first draft by February 3rd to finesse before submission.
I drew up some spider diagrams about the competitions 3 criteria, to highlight some of the required work:

1.    Vision
2.    Economic Viability (and thus governance)
3.    Popularity


Economic Viability

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