Unlike Minds

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= a capability network: "the best way to stimulate innovation is to gather together unlike minds".

URL = http://www.unlikeminds.co.uk/



By David Oliver and David Dickinson:

"Unlike Minds was established with cooperative principles and a strong, underlying ethical code. Because of the mix of commercial, third sector and pro bono work undertaken by Unlike Minds associates, we struggle to describe ourselves as private sector, social enterprise or indeed a “community company” and we prefer to describe ourselves as a Holistic Enterprise company.

We advocate Holistic Enterprise as a blend of public, private and voluntary sector activity more appropriate to the age. (What better way to prove the concept than to live it as a piece of action research.)

The credo of Unlike Minds is, in order: to use our capabilities to make a difference; to have fun doing so; and to earn sufficient to sustain the first two.

Unlike Minds associates are each successful in their own right, having built a reputation for being one of the best in their respective field. The real power of Unlike Minds is “the power of interaction” describing the creative fusion, interdisciplinarity and shared working from which all of our clients benefit." (http://www.unlikeminds.co.uk/Unlike_Minds/More_about_us.html)


"Unlike Minds is a capability network of independent professionals, each with an established track record and reputation in their field. Many are at the centre of networks of expertise in their own fields.

We are known for Transdisciplinarity and originality of thinking.

Unlike Minds operates as a social enterprise business, focusing on helping organisations of all sizes and in all sectors to think creatively, enabling them to develop breakthrough processes, products and services.

We work as innovation catalysts across private, third and public sectors to support visioning, strategy and execution.

We are engaged by clients to challenge existing systems and envisage innovative, new approaches. Much like an architectural practice, we work alongside the client to co-create sustainable solutions that are groundbreaking today and sustainable for the foreseeable future." (http://www.unlikeminds.co.uk/Unlike_Minds/Home.html)


David Dickinson:

"The three key concepts underpinning our own current activities:

  • information entitlement and Personal relevance;
  • well-being and how we can use Information Society Technologies to support it;
  • and breakthrough performance environments.

First, Information entitlement and personal relevance.

If we assume that every person on this planet has an entitlement to access digital information, then the challenge is to enable them to do so in a way that is relevant to the flow of their lives.

I would like to see Paradiso consider a series of conventions and standards for interaction with personal information.

We are using a fundamental cycle of orientation, navigation and engagement to help people derive relevance.

In our work we are concentrating on the right hand side of this diagram, specifically, what we call the i-Space Navigator, referred to in the diagram as the SatNav.

Just like a Satellite Navigator in a car, we are proposing that the i-Space Navigator will know where you are in both your information space AND personal context, where you wish to travel to, and also suggest possible routes and points of interest along the way.

My second key concept is well-being and how we use technology to support it.

One of life’s paradoxes is that the less able a person is to manage the complexities of their lives, the more complex their lives often are. Service users in greatest need, often struggle to understand the relationship between entitlement combinations and exclusions. They then try to make sense of information gleaned from multiple stovepipes using pencil and paper.

Personal sense-making is a key factor in wellbeing.

The technology to resolve this, is relatively simple: well within the scope of the Future Internet Core Infrastructure.

But well-being is a loaded term and it is too easy for the tabloid press to trivialise it as a happiness index.

The reality is “What you measure is what you get.” Could Paradiso have a voice in ensuring that we are more careful about what we measure?

If you think this is relevant, you may wish to read the Report by the Stiglitz Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress.

But the current environment and growing complexity of the “World Problematique” is allpervasive. Reorganisations, funding cuts etc all cause institutional thinking to revert to type, conspiring to frustrate our ambitions.

So to my third concept, Breakthrough Performance Environments, an area in which my business partner David Oliver is an acknowledged expert.

David cites the Neurosciences Institute at La Jolla, California as one of the best examples of a breakthrough performance environment.

Nobel Laureate Gerald Edelman established this nexus centre, taking people away from the institutional straitjackets and the dominant logic of their own organisations in universities, government and commercial laboratories.

Once someone is working at La Jolla, their commitment and dedication is total. They cannot be called away for academic meetings, sales reviews, conferences etc.

Everyone must do lunch at which Edelman sets the topic of conversation. Although I don’t have time to explain now, if you are interested, ask me later to explain how the lunchtime topic “do fruit flies dream?” led to the greatest ever breakthrough in anaesthesia." (http://paradiso-fp7.eu/wp-content/plugins/alcyonis-event-agenda//files/Introduction_to_Unlike-Minds_Cloud-Relevance.pdf)

More Information

  • The Manchester Monastery, a breakthrough performance environment, see slide 7 at [1]

"The Manchester Monastery is a deconsecrated Franciscan friary in a disadvantaged ward in inner city Manchester. It too is an iconic building, built by Franciscan brothers (coincidentally from Belgium), and the local community of Gorton in the 1860s. The Monastery’s management team shares our vision of continuing personal well-being and sustainable living. They share our values. Together, we are realising our ambitions for a refuge for thinking differently across and between the public, private and third sectors, the universities, politics and religion. We are in the final stages of getting the Monastery accredited as a UNESCO Regional Centre of Expertise in Education for Sustainable Development."