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Bharath Vallabha's picture

First Meeting

One issue that struck me from the first meeting is the relation between structure and emergence. If there is too much structure imposed on the conversations, that seems to inhibit emergence of a focused conversation since pre-determined structure tends to lead to familiar and perhaps boring conversational patterns. But if there isn’t much structure, that too seems to inhibit emergence of a focused conversation since too many issues get onto the table and people might talk past one another.

So how should we deal with the question of what kind of structure we should have? And in particular, how should we organize meetings and think about readings and speakers?

The going idea that people seem to have come to is that the structure we would like to have should itself emerge from our conversations, and we can think of the structure in general as itself a work in progress. I think this is a good idea. Given the different places from which the people in the group are coming, it would be helpful to discover, rather than simply lay down as a rule from a presumed privilaged perspective, how we can best engage with each other.

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