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Reification and John at Lisbon airport May 20, 2007

Posted by bevtrayner in Reflections, Reification.

Bev and John at airport

I went to have coffee with John as he stopped off in Lisbon on his way to UK (only to return to Lisbon in a few days). We discussed the dialogue in great detail and finalised all executive decisions. Not.

The truth is that by the time we had finished analysing and reflecting on all life’s stuff, John had to rush through security and there was no time to think of the dialogue. I then came home to finish the preparations for reifications at another event – the KM4Dev (*) Workshop in the Netherlands, later in June.

In my preparations for the reifications of this workshop in the Netherlands I can’t help thinking about our reifications at the dialogue. There are some parallels and differences i.e. I have my costs covered for participating in the workshop in return for doing the documentation of Capacity Building and Training in Knowledge Sharing and Management: The Knowledge Expedition Approach.

The documentation – or reification – of the process is very tightly organised and I’ve started with a test blog – Knowledge Expeditions – to show different ways the blog can support the artefacts from the workshop. However, my observation (with a communities of practice hat on) is that the process of planning and preparing of the reifications is actually part of the process of community building. It’s part of the learning iteration of reification-participation.

The approach they are taking is quite different to ours at the dialogue. The dialogue is more like – we’ll improvise – more or less – on the spot. I am bookmarking that difference to reflect on at the dialogue.

I’m also reminded of the questions that Nancy brought up, linking reifications to legitimacy, where the question: “why the heck are you spending time with those crazy people” is an important one.

N suggests that the questions about “capturing” and “harvesting” at F2F events revolve around:

1. Who are we doing this for – it helps to know.
2. What do we want to do with it. Is it the act of capturing? Sharing out? Holding for future “processing”?
3. How do we keep the balance so it does not take away from the F2F interaction?

Question 3 for me reads more like: what is the role of reification in our meaning-making process? Are we doing enough/too little reification for meaning-making to happen?

Or something like that.

(*)Knowledge Management for Development



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