UNA San Francisco Bay Area
Council of Organizations

Promoting the goals of the UN in the Bay Area.
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Articles

Sustainable Development Goals

The UN General Assembly's Open Working Group Proposal from summer of 2014 lists 17 SDGs and 169 targets. As of June 2015, it appears these goals and targets will be adopted in September of 2015. Unlike the Millenium Development Goals that expire at the end of 2015, the SDGs are targeted at developed as well as developing countries and include gender equality and greater economic equality. All these goals need to be tracked and implemented here in the Bay Area. Since it is our mission to promote the goals of the United Nations, the UNA SF Bay COO needs to make the SDGs a centerpiece of our activities. See the Open Working Group Proposal for Sustainable Development Goals.

Metropolitan Makeover

TEAMWORK: WHY METROPOLITAN ECONOMIC STRATEGY IS THE KEY TO GENERATING SUSTAINABLE PROSPERITY AND QUALITY OF LIFE FOR THE WORLD by Marc A. Weiss. Urban areas are more prosperous than rural areas. "The reason for this disparity is because urban regions are the only places that can combine the two most important elements for generating productivity and innovation, which is the main way that economies create value and compete in the global marketplace. These two elements are specialization and diversity."

Beyond Transparency - Open Data and the Future of Civic Innovation. This is a book with articles by twenty different authors, freely downloadable. The web page is: beyondtransparency.org. What we need to think through is how at this relatively early date in the opening up of government data we can make sure that the Bay Area cities use formats that make the data comparable. Then down the road it will be so much easier to create a larger Metro region open data system.

The Metropolitan Revolution by Bruce Katz and Jennifer Bradley. "A revolution is stirring in America. Across the nation cities and metropolitan areas, and the networks of pragmatic leaders who govern them, are taking on the big issues that Washington won't, or can't, solve. They are reshaping our economy and fixing our broken political system." Katz recently appeared (9/19/2013) on Greg Dalton's Climate One at the Commonwealth Club with Mayor Lee, Kofi Bonner. Audio is available and if you have an hour, worth listening to. His message is a pragmatic one suggesting that U.S. metropolitan regions can help themselves.

MetroQuest looks to be the engagement software we want, but it is too expensive - $1000 and up.- and we need to be more organized about what we want first.

Economic Direct Democracy: A Framework to End Poverty and Maximize Well-Being by John C. Boik. This is a downloadable book about restructuring the economy at the local level. "The framework synthesizes multiple approaches that are currently in use in cities and regions around the world into a coherent, consistent, integrated whole. It builds on ideas from buy-local, invest-local, local-currency, local-food, local-sharing, open-source, open-government, open-data, participatory democracy, and related sustainable development, knowledge transfer, social change, and decision-making initiatives. An integrated approach can allow rapid progress with relative ease: in the United States and many other countries, no legislative action is required to implement the framework."


Bay Area Regional Planning

1) A New Plan for the Region, December 17, 2013 - "Two Bay Area regional planning agencies adopted Plan Bay Area,...the Bay Area’s implementation of the land use portion of California’s climate change law....The plan is a major step forward in that it puts transportation money behind a clear land use vision. But the process of producing Plan Bay Area also revealed weaknesses in regional planning. In particular, there is too little money for the region’s transportation needs and too few tools to enact the land use vision." -- spur.org.

2) SPUR's Agenda for Change in the San Francisco Bay Area, April 29, 2014. This plan takes the regional view, which is the sensible way to go as we prepare for coming changes induced by the impact of humanity on the global ecosystem. This is worth reading in detail by every citizen of the area. How can we make this plan bear fruit? spur.org.


Collective Impact

1) Stanford Social Innovation Review, Winter 2011 "Collective Impact" - Large-scale social change requires broad cross-sector coordination, yet the social sector remains focused on the isolated intervention of individual organizations." THE FIVE CONDITIONS OF COLLECTIVE SUCCESS: Common Agenda, Shared Measurement Systems, Mutually Reinforcing Activities, Continuous Communication, Backbone Support Organizations.
2) Collective Impact: A Game Changing Model for the Social Sector from the National Coalition for Dialogue and Deliberation. NCDD presents the idea as a strategy for large scale collaborative change and bills this article as a "primer".
3) Embracing Emergence: How Collective Impact Addresses Complexity from the Foundation Strategy Group (FSG) -- don't expect a key that magically solves all complex problems. Still the article is worth reading and the webinar does provide some insights.
4) Building a Strategic Learning and Evaluation System for Your Organization another article from the Foundation Strategy Group (FSG) -- this gets into detail about the second point of collective impact, "shared measurement"..
5) Evaluating Complexity from FSG


Social Labs / the commons

1) The Social Labs Revolution - A New Approach to Solving Our Most Complex Challenges by Zaid Hassan with forward by Joi Ito Director of MIT Media Lab. December 17, 2013 - This book is another take on collective emergence. Complexity makes it impossible to plan. By the time you get to stage two of your plan, things are different, and if you stick to the plan, the result ranges from sub-optimal to disastrous. So what do we do? Hassan suggests we bring together civil society, business and government to try this and try that - prototyping to see what works. Social Labs concept is not the same as collective impact, but seems a good followup to the FSG take on complexity directly above.
2) The Commons as a Template for Transformation by David Bollier, February 2014. "This essay argues that, in the face of the deep pathologies of neoliberal capitalism, the commons paradigm can help us imagine and implement a transition to new decentralized systems of provisioning and democratic governance...." This is a careful look at the idea of the commons from several perspectives. Well worth reading and applies to UNA SF Bay COO because it imagines a future largely controlled by Market, State and Commons, and we are looking at bringing civic society together with Business and Government. Perhaps we should think of ourselves as a "commons".


Bringing in the Government

Pete Peterson on how the Govt sees Public Engagement This is youtube video about 15 minutes long that explains why the government, while being more and more open to public engagement at the same time tends to despise the public and fears getting engaged. Good viewing for those in the public (us) who may want to engage the government.


Tips on Building a Social Movement

The Movement Action Plan: A Strategic Framework Describing the Eight Stages of Successful Social Movements by Bill Moyer, Spring 1987. Bill Moyer was an activist in the anti-nuclear movement of the late 70's and 80's. It is not easy getting a movement off the ground and success is elusive but by no means impossible.


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