Food Shift - Principles
In order to guide our work and help us better coordinate and collaborate, we are attempting to elucidate a number of principles that we can base our work on. This is the first iteration of those principles.
- Conversation is change. Conversations are important. We are operating from the assumption that our food systems are living systems and as we have conversations we are also learning together. This means that the food systems we are included in are also changing. Action towards regeneration can come out of the learning that we can do together in conversation.
- All learning is mutual learning. We want to support and operate from the view that learning is something that is done in the context of different perspectives contrasting and coming together. We want to create learning environments where we all come as peers and continiously redraw our maps together rather than focusing on just disseminating information.
- Growing a living culture. We are focused on growing a culture where people that are involved are able to express themselves and co-create the evolution of this particular culture. We recognize the need to adapt to the context and needs that emerge in our work with food systems and want to encourage fluidity while using structure like these principles to ensure a direction towards regeneration.
- Whole systems considerations. We purposefully do not limit ourselves to working with a particular “part of the food system”. We view think that creating a networked support structure for regenerative emergence includes supporting many different facets of the people, projects and organizations that are involved in the shift. Conversations and initiatives can include but are not limited to things like personal practices, economic models, exchange of genetic materials and emotional support. We do not know what is needed to shift our food systems so we are open to working with the needs that emerge.
- Welcome a multiplicity of language. We encourage participants in our forum and activities to use whatever language we feel comfortable with. Conversations could flow in and out of many languages and we encourage people to ask for translations and clarifications where they feel a need for them. Having a multiplicity of languages and ways of speaking could hopefully lead to crossings of more cultural perspectives which may lead to deeper learning together. It is also important that people do not feel impeded from engaging in conversations because they feel a need to speak in a way that does not come naturally.
- Participation over commitment. We want this network to be a place where people are inspired to contribute without a fear of becoming stuck or laden with extra responsibilities. While we, as humans, are accountable for the commitments we make to each other, we try to ensure that people feel welcome to participate and also not participate when their energies are drawn elsewhere. We are aspiring to keeping the boundaries of the network as open and porous as possible so that people, projects and organizations may flow in and out of interaction as seen fit with their needs.
- Working out loud. We encourage the use of this platform to have conversations in the network in order for others to be able to benefit from the insights that are had as well as joining in on conversations that started before someone arrived. Let us attempt to avoid back-channels where possible so that we can enjoy a larger degree of coherence together.
- Striving for transparency and distribution of power. We intend to make decisions that are taken in the organisation in a way that is transparent for everyone to see. We also strive to distribute the decision-making and the power that comes with it as far out to the edges of the people involved in a certain issue as possible.