Ran a workshop today on “Is Climate Science irrelevant?” (and what motivates people to get and stay involved in groups/movements.)
I have lots of opinions on these questions. There was a time I would have felt the right/duty to fill up a goodly proportion of the hour slot with those opinions, and then have a Q and A at the end. That time is known as “the Bad Old Days.” Because, frankly, as the young people say, “fuck that noise.”
Instead we did intros (folks got name badges), then some spectrums (sic) to find out who thinks what about some of the issues (spectra are an on-your-feet opinion poll. “If you think climate science is the crucial thing a movement should have a grip on, stand at this wall. If you think it’s basically irrelevant, stand at that wall, and grade yourself in between as to your opinion. Form your place on the spectrum before moving there, and don’t be influenced by where other people stand.” “If you think nuclear power….”
Invited participants to come up with spectrum questions too.)
Then got people into pairs where they didn’t know the other person. They were to do intros and then feedback on a topic. Very brief points from me, then split into different pairs, feedback and a little yacking from me, then split into yet different pairs, followed by general feedback and chat.
Instead of it being about half an hour in toto of me flapping my jaws, with a few random interjections from other people and some people saying nothing and meeting no-one, everyone participated, spent time engaging and sharing ideas. My yacking was maybe 15 to 20% including the explaining of spectrums etc.
There is, of course, a place for ego-foddering and sage on the stage. And that place is no less than a thousand miles from wherever I am.