The transformation that our world is inevitably facing requires that we develop new attitudes, ways of thinking and of making sense of life and the technologies we have at hand.
I met Gino Francato and Christophe Le Ret in a futures literacy workshop in early 2021 and was much intrigued by their plans to launch a manifesto, called Khēmia, and hence initiate a think tank. The think tank is to engage people for a more caring society and to make the vision outlined in the manifesto come true, initially focussing but not limited on the chemical industry.
Last week, the initial virtual kick-off workshop took place and I was much pleased to facilitate. Here's what came out of it.
Khēmia is a think tank to fuel transformation towards a more caring society
In the last 200 years, humankind overall benefited from capitalism, but the impact on the environment, and the current level of inequality are no longer sustainable. Khēmia claims that we need to rethink not only the capitalistic society in the 21st century, but the very idea of what is valuable and honorable.
It suggests alternatives to the current socio-economic system. It aims to be engaging, visionary, narrative and to propose practical solutions, promoting success stories. Khēmia aims to first focus on the industry and to start with the chemical industry where its founders have their roots and networks.
The initial virtual kick-off workshop on Friday, July 30, intended to invite people interested in supporting the changes necessary to our world, to create an understanding of the Khēmia manifesto, to lay the foundations for a community willing to take initiative, groom their drive for action and spark energy and ideas for transformation.
The invitation to the workshop resonated well in the LinkedIn community and people from all over the world (Nigeria, US, Brazil, India, UK and from all over the EU) and with a rainbow of backgrounds (sociology, chemistry, innovation management, HR, art, future studies, communication, ...and much more) registered. Close to two dozen participants eventually joined the workshop.
Khēmia aims at making the world a sustainable, equal and caring place
To clarify intentions and expectations, participants were initially asked to introduce themselves and to outline what aspects of the manifesto and of the LinkedIn invitation to the workshop had brought them to the meeting. Common to their comments was that they want to make a change in the world and to liaise with others to increase impact, momentum and their range of available options.
Gino and Christophe gave more insight about their background and how they came to create the Khēmia manifesto. They gave a detailed introduction to the aspects and content of the manifesto, and initial questions of the audience were answered and discussed.
Khēmia is an invitation to liaise with other change makers and shape own initiatives
Gino and Christophe also outlined that Khēmia is supposed to be a think tank, providing the grounds for various initiatives to start off. As such, it is a platform to meet likeminded people, to share knowledge and ideas, to liaise and to support each other in driving the changes necessary each in their area of influence. What that means specifically, however, is to shaped by the participants and so Gino and Christophe invited everybody to share their ideas that resulting in the following board:
Outlook: Let's define specific actions and next steps in a subsequent meeting
In the closing phase of the workshop, Gino and Christophe announced plans for another virtual meeting to discuss next steps for the Khēmia think tank more specifically. They were quite overwhelmed as most of the participants expressed their wish to stay
involved. So there's a lot to come - stay tuned!
Here is some of the feedback we got from participants:
- "it's been super interesting to hear others' views ... and hear a little of their journey to being here today."
- "We have started and lots needs to be done. We will achieve it as a collective."
- "My thoughts are that the ideas are amazing, the momentum can get into something real but needs more plan and structure, giving tools to get into the goals requires some work that has to be done. I'd be happy to help out and get into that!"
- "We are all aware of the issues and willing to change but somehow overwhelmed by the magnitude of the tasks. Group spirit might help create the drive/energy/motivation we need to finally act! Very refreshing to see!!"
- "I feel there is a lot of energy and motivation in this group. No matter the experience and the background, we all feel an urgency to act!"
If you would like to join the Khēmia think tank and the next
meeting(s), feel free to get in touch with the Khēmia founders
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