It’s Only Weird the first Time: How Curiosity and Courage Expand Possibility!

Plexus 2017 will surprise participants with a “fiery” story of courage and determination. Join us to hear and see what happens! During the week, Dr. Michelle Carnes is a public health anthropologist in American Indian and LGBTQ youth suicide prevention, cultural preservation and restoration.  On weekends, she eats fire. And escapes rope ties. And swallows swords. Michelle Carnes’ evolution to professional sideshow stuntress is rooted in her own resolve to conquer fear. At first, it’s hard to get past the fear, she said. “When the fire is coming at your face, a part of you says this is a bad…

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The “Weaving” of a Network

Plexus 2017  sets the conditions for  Pop-up Networks where new ideas can lead to longer term actions.  Join us to see how it happens. Monday May 7th begins with a long time Plexus Catalyst, June Holley. June has been weaving economic and community networks for more than 25 years. In 1981 she discovered complexity science and became intrigued with the process of transformation. How could communities change in ways that would make them good places for everyone? Her Network Weaver Handbook is an essential guide for people interested in catalyzing a new network or enhancing an existing one. Each chapter contains a short…

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Vision and Emotion are Tools for Creation

At Plexus 2017, the visual, the intellectual, the creative and the practical are all part of turning Ideas into Action with Barb Siegel and other Catalysts! Join us to see how it happens. Connecting individual and collective experiences during Plexus 2017 demands more than traditional graphic recording.  Visual Practitioner Barb Siegel of Look2listen.com will co-create an experience that allows participants to “see their feelings.”  Barb understands how Vision and Emotion are intertwined and will help participants explore the practice of communicating internally with feelings and externally through images to generate new ideas. Barb is a registered architect and award winning…

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Turn Ideas into Action with Breakthrough Thinking!

Experience the Breakthrough of turning Ideas into Action with Judah Pollack and other Catalysts! Join us to see how it happens. Erik Weihenmayer, who is totally blind, belongs to an elite group of mountain climbers who have scaled the “seven summits,” the tallest peaks on all seven continents, including Mount Everest in Napal and Mount Vinson in Antarctica. Weihenmayer learned to “see,” with his tongue, using a device called BrainPort, In effect, his brain was rewired to get visual information in a new way. This is just one of the extraordinary stories in The Net and the Butterfly: The Art and…

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Surprising Insights from Improv!

Plexus 2017 opens on Sunday May 7, 2017 at 7pm with an evening of Improv with Rich Battaglia. There’s nothing like “acting it out” to discover the hidden truth, the disconcertingly obvious, and the spark for creative breakthroughs.  Join us to see how it happens. Rich Battaglia was introduced to Improv in 1983, attending classes at National Improv Theatre (NIT)  NYC. He was hooked from the  first demonstration of The Art of Improv. He attended classes at NIT and became a member of the performance group Assembly, eventually teaching and helping write a course that trained corporate leaders, ‘Thinking on…

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Take Ideas off the White Board and into the World

Plexus Conferences are for people who want to take ideas off the white board and into the world. Sharing first hand TALES from the field about innovative approaches to solving big problems Experiencing TOOLS fellow practitioners are using now Designing TACTICS for your own work you can take home and apply When you attend the Plexus 2017 Conference, you will be an important part of the lively interactions and Catalyst Conversations including Liberating Structures, Open Space, and TEDTalk-style stories. Join a diverse community of thinkers, practitioners, educators, leaders, learners, researchers, change agents and idea junkies for three days of interaction,…

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Creating a Visual Narrative -The Botanical Tyranny Parlor

LOOK VERY CLOSELY. MY WORK IS BEAUTIFUL AND UGLY. People are often attracted to the aesthetics of an image or object that stimulates desire. Decorative objects are collected and exhibited in the home as status symbols of affluence and refinement. My work engages the viewer with its seemingly innocent decorative delight; yet upon closer examination the work challenges and questions our attraction by revealing darker truths. I explore the hidden cost inherent in most of what we find seductively attractive. A dark undercurrent of “cultural reckoning” informs my series’ drawings and prints. Rooted in the tradition of botanical illustration, the…

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What is Adaptive Positive Deviance?

Adaptive Positive Deviance is a powerful way to make big improvements through small (and maybe a few large) changes.  For over a decade,  Plexus Institute has helped guide organizations and communities to see, understand and address the “sticky” and complex issues hampering success. Plexus’s work emphasizes practical methods and practices that are based on principles of complexity to disrupt the status quo and find solutions. Adaptive Positive Deviance (APD) The  Adaptive Positive Deviance framework is a powerful Catalyst to help leaders and change agents cultivate the uncommon yet successful ideas and behaviors in their own organizations and uncover solutions that…

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Tools for Catalysts

The Plexus Conference 2017 is about putting Ideas into Action. Throughout the conference, tools for engaging with complex issues will be shared and practiced. Highlighted below are two of practices that will be used in our Catalyst Conversations and exercises. Liberating Structures Throughout the conference, we will engage the community in “Liberating Structures” – a set of processes based on complexity principles that engage diverse participants in highly productive conversations to integrate ideas and move them forward.  We’ll both learn and use these innovative methods to design and facilitate group collaboration and you’ll be able to take home tools that…

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Plexus Addresses Complexity

Plexus Institute was founded with the purpose to address real-world challenges through the understanding, advancement and diffusion of ideas and practices rooted in the principles of complexity. The original mission chosen by the founders of Plexus Institute was inspired by the rapid pace of complex systems science and the slow pace of converting those discoveries into practical applications. By remaining dedicated to fostering profound and positive impact through the application of complexity science, Plexus continues to develop solutions to complex problems that transcend traditional boundaries. Fostering the health of individuals, families, communities, organizations and our natural environment by helping people…

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