Method: "Appreciative Inquiry" Home Page
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||Appreciative inquiry (AI) is a knowledge development model that is intended to engage stakeholders in self-determined or self-prescribed change. It is attributed with revolutionizing the field of organizational development and was a precursor to the rise of positive organization studies and the strengths based movement in American management.
AI was developed at Case Western Reserve University, in its department of organizational behavior. It started with a 1987 article by David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva who felt that the overuse of problem solving hindered social improvement, implying that what was needed were new methods of inquiry that would help generate new ideas and new models for how to organize people and work.
Appreciative Inquiry is about the coevolutionary search for the best or most qualified people in enterprises, and the relevant world around them (such as subject matter experts that exist outside the enterprise). In its broadest focus, it involves systematic discovery of what provides life to living systems when they are considered to be most alive, most effective, and most constructively capable in economic, ecological, and human terms.
AI involves the art and practice of asking questions intended to strengthen a systemÕs capacity to apprehend, anticipate, and heighten positive potential. It involves the mobilization of inquiry through the crafting of the unconditional positive question, often-involving hundreds or sometimes thousands of people. In AI the challenging task of intervention or intervening gives way to the speed of imagination and innovation. Instead of giving way to negation, criticism, and spiraling diagnosis, there is discovery, dream, and design. AI seeks to build a constructive union between a whole people and the massive entirety of what people perceive to be past and present capacities. For example: achievements, assets, unexplored potentials, innovations, strengths, elevated thoughts, opportunities, benchmarks, high point moments, lived values, traditions, strategic competencies, stories, expressions of wisdom, insights into the deeper corporate spirit or soul-- and visions of valued and possible futures. Taking all of these together as a gestalt, AI deliberately, in everything it does, attempts to work from accounts of a positive change core and it assumes that every living entity or system has many untapped and rich and inspiring accounts of the positive. Bind the energy of this core directly to any change agenda and changes never conceived as possible are suddenly and democratically mobilized.
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