Town Hall Meeting 2.0: 1000 Round Table Discussions
As OccupyLA takes over the steps of City Hall and joins with cities around the country, we wanted to share with you a related story about people power from Hub Tel Aviv.
Innovation comes in all shapes and sizes, and it’s not surprising that the most exciting innovations are the least expected. If I asked you to coordinate a town hall meeting with 10,000 people AND to make sure each person’s voice was heard, could you do it?
Led by Hub Tel Aviv and local leaders, the citizens of Israel succeeded in doing just this by coordinating 1000 simultaneous round table discussions around the country - and documenting it online! You can read in more detail about the process and results on Hub Amsterdam’s blog post covering this story.
This story starts with Daphne, a 24 year old student who took residency on the streets and invited others to join her in a peaceful protest, and over time, one turned in to half a million. Hub Tel Aviv took advantage of this opportunity by doing what they do best - setting up 4 round tables and hosting conversations.
They did this every day for three weeks, asking three main questions:
- Who are you and what is touching you in this protest movement?
- What changes would you like to see as a result of this movement?
- What are the actions that you would be willing to take responsibility for in order to change the situation?
However, there was one question that shed light on exactly what they needed to do next.
- How should we design the process from now on to move from a protest to a sustainable change?
The answer? More tables!
The main event was hosted at Athen’s Square in Tel Aviv where over 50 tables were set up surrounded by lights, audio, projectors, and screens. During this time, all around Israel, 10,000 people were discussing the future of their country.
Thoughts and ideas are posted in an open-source manner on the official website of the social protest of Israel. (Unfortunately, the website is not in English.)
It’s additionally exciting to hear that Hub Brussels is taking on a similar initiative. What will it take for 10,000 Angelinos to attend 1000 round table discussions? We think the timing could not be better to build off this model and the momentum of OccupyLA and turn a protest into meaningful change!
- Read the Hub Amsterdam’s blog post here: http://amsterdam.the-hub.net/public/blog/2011/09/29/hub-tel-aviv-%E2%80%9Cthe-athens-square-brought-back-to-life-again%E2%80%9D/
- The whole interview by Maria Bakari with Danny Gal, offering a lot of practical information on how the event developed, how it was set up, main success factors, hints and tips: http://soundcloud.com/bakari-1-1/rec-dannygal-14-sep-2011-09-03
- Direct impressions, pictures and highlights from the table discussions on the Daily Kos blog: http://goo.gl/ohkcf
- Facebook group We Dare to Care engaging coaches and facilitators to develop constructive responses to the UK riots:http://www.facebook.com/groups/200914716605833/
- Link to the Belgian initiative: http://www.g1000.org