Dr. David Cooperrider's founding theoretical work in "Appreciative Inquiry" is creating a positive revolution in the leadership of change. With implications for every aspect of business, AI has experienced exponential growth as a change initiative methodology. This growth is testimony to the profound impact AI is having in business, education, healthcare, communities, non-profit and government institutions.
David speaks at large corporate and association conferences and has served as advisor to a wide variety of organizations including the Boeing Corporation, Fairmount Minerals, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, McKinsey, Parker Hannifin, Sherwin Williams, Wal-Mart, American Red Cross, American Hospital Association, Cleveland Clinic, and World Vision.
David often serves as meeting speaker and leader of large group interactive conference events. Contact us to learn more about David Cooperrider's speaking engagements, with a general overview of his speaking topics and time options (speech, speech with breakout session, speech as part of full day program, 2-3 day training programs, etc.)
David Cooperrider and Chuck Fowler discuss the opening of the Fowler Center for Sustainable Value.
Together, the concepts of Appreciative Inquiry and Sustainable Value answer the challenge of business today: to generate wealth while strategically addressing the pressures of multiple stakeholders, increasing competition, and ever-greater resource limitations.
This was one of the most powerful examples of the AI Summit method ever recorded–showing how the AI Summit can blend advanced economic strategy analysis with action oriented multi-stakeholder designing.
by David L. Cooperrrider, Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University Article prepared for the Organizational Dynamics 2012 Executive Summary The emergence of strengths-based management may be the management innovation of our time. Nearly…
David Cooperrider, PhD, internationally renowned for his work which helped catalyze today’s strengths revolution in management, has been named the next Peter F. Drucker Distinguished Fellow for his contribution to the field of management.
Why walkable communities, sustainable economics, and multilateral
diplomacy are the future of American power.
Why Grand Strategy? Why Now?
This Foreign Policy article is the most important essay I’ve read in a very long time. How many of us believe that our country can align around a nationally unifying purpose that will reignite our economy, create long term security, and help lead the global transition to a sustainable global system?
This article is unequivocal: America can do it–once again. We’ve done it before. Yet it requires a new understanding of the discipline of grand strategy, not just as a concept but as a non-partisan way to think clearly and collectively about the future.
Drawing on the article, here is a summary of key points. Read more
North America’s future in manufacturing will be fueled by innovation. Companies that can engage their workforce in sustainable, entrepreneurial endeavors can not only survive but flourish.
I was recently interviewed by Industry Week and they will be covering our Global Forum for Business as an Agent of World Benefit. Here is an excerpt from the interview…it picks up with the Fairmount Santrol story of how sustainability and the high engagement AI Design Summit–where you bring 600 or more stakeholders in the room to design sustainable value opportunities–is igniting Fairmount’s industry leading success….Here is where the article picks up:
At Fairmount Santrol (formerly Fairmount Minerals), which produces sand and sand products for oil and gas exploration and other markets, Cooperrider in 2005 conducted an Appreciative Inquiry exercise with more than 300 employees as well as external stakeholders such as customers and community leaders. Appreciative inquiry is an approach to organizational change that is based on discovering the strengths and aspirations of the organization through collaborative exercises involving large groups of stakeholders. That led to the development of Fairmount’s sustainable development ideals and guiding principles. Read more
Long maligned for crime, corruption and pollution, the area is now home to luxury apartments, warehouse lofts and a new burst of optimism
Cleveland is in the national news–from the Wall Street Journal to New York Times–as a “comeback city.” Its a city on the move but the real revolution is about Cleveland’s grit (“decade of determination”) and Cleveland’s green (“building a green city on a blue lake”.) While this Wall Street Journal headline misses the empowerment and innovation catalyzed by Mayor Jackson’s Sustainable Cleveland 2019 (a ten year series of Appreciative Inquiry Design Summits focusing on turning social and ecological challenges into business opportunities and opportunities to empower community)–other reporters, such as Lee Chilicote, have captured much of the essence. Lee writes:
“In recent years, Cleveland has gone from gritty to green in major ways. This is evident in the newgreen roof on the convention center, the now-annual Potluck in the Park that brings together hundreds of Clevelanders for a locally grown smorgasbord offering everything from fried greens to bok choy, and trail and green space projects.
But how green are we? Thanks to a community report and set of dashboard indicators released by Sustainable Cleveland 2019, a five-year-old initiative that aims to transform Cleveland into “a green city on a blue lake,” we now have a better idea. Some of the statistics are impressive, showing how far we’ve come in half a decade. Read more
Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management Honors David Cooperrider with the 2014 “Research of Enduring Impact Award”. Read more…
See on Scoop.it – Business as an Agent of World Benefit
(Reuters) – Wal-Mart Stores Inc wants Americans, even those on a budget, to buy more organic food.The retailer that leads U.S. stores in grocery sales said on Thursday it struck a deal to
Wal Mart is advancing the sustainability revolution in the best way it knows how: by lowering prices, so organics are available to everyone. ”If we can make that price premium disappear, we think it (the organics movement) will grow much, much faster,” Jack Sinclair, executive vice president of grocery at Walmart U.S., said of the retailer’s small but faster-growing organic sales. How does Wal Mart build a better future for more people? By cutting out redundant steps in the process, finding new effieciencies, and lowering prices. Save money, live well is not an empty slogan and its a lesson in effective management: lead with your distinctive strengths, as you search for ways to do good and do well.
See on www.reuters.com
It is not an exaggeration to say that a sea change has occurred with respect to sustainable value creation across a wider stakeholder domain; what used to be a peripheral set of activities has now become integral to firm strategy, supply chain operations, talent management, and more.
Today, as director for the Cow of the Future™ project, I collaborate with scientists, nutritionists, veterinarians, producers and many others who ask questions about the production of methane gas by dairy cows.
The story of the sustainable dairy industry movement is exciting and one of the pillars of a grand strategy for America–a regenerative agriculture that creates health and flourishing. Here is my interview on the subject and how Appreciative Inquiry catalyzed cooperation across the full value chain for a sustainable dairy.
And here is an example of the kind of curious, appreciative inquiry leadership we see happening: it involves rigorous inquiry; it is possibility focsued; and it shows that when you change the way you see, the things you see also change!
See on www.usdairy.com
“This is part of an ongoing series from Harvard Business Review and the Skoll World Forum on how mega-corporations are integrating innovative ways to solve social and environmental problems into their core operations.”
In appreciative inquiry’s 4th “D” we help companies set up an affirmative organization learning culture which spreads “what works” with the click of a button–it’s called the ASN, or accelerating strengths network. In Wal-Mart’s early work we helped Andy Rueben spread over 2000 stories of success–all in low cost storytelling ways–to help inspire other employees, designers, and managers throughout the Wal-mart system and beyond. This story shows the ripple effects too. Here the CEO of Kimberely Clark shares how the spark at Wal-mart became a passion at KC, and how stories have wings and can fly from mountain top to mountaintop. This kind of strengths based, story based, network based change is empowering and fun. Change does not need to be dreaded, or create resistance–people love change, really. When these sparks ( stories) are set free, they grow into bright flames that light the way for others, and together become a corporate torch (legacy). The CEO of Kimberly Clark in this HBR series shows how easily this passion for positive change can spread to employees at every level.
“Some of the best thinking on how to meet our sustainability goals have come from employees in our mills. We first introduced Neve Compacto, a low-energy paper product, in Italy, to help retailers save shelf space and moms save room in their storage closet. Our Brazilian team saw how well it was working there and adapted it for use in their market. It’s been a huge success there. The Compacto rolls reduce the average amount of packaging used by 13%, which is equivalent to just over 1.8 million empty plastic water bottles in one year.”
See on skollworldforum.org
The people of Cleveland are mobilizing around a compelling vision to transform their communities into a flourishing city. They have the courage to dream a magnanimous vision for their city in the face of tremendous challenges….
Today’s Huntington Post article by Michele Hunt is about putting vision and values to work. Highlighted is the power of wholeness–and a shift from dialogical (gridlocked) democracy to design democracy: where “we the people” do not just provide input, but actually engage in the design of strategic change. This case story involves Cleveland.
The City of Cleveland: Designing a Green City on a Blue Lake: Despite media attention on federal efforts to transition to a green economy, the real change happening is a quiet revolution taking places among US cities. Over 973 mayors have signed on to the US Mayors Climate Protection Agreement. However, even with the exponential growth of effort by cities, most of the action still remains fragmented. Most initiatives are either within a specific sector or a small area of a city resulting in the absence of systemic approaches to change. Read more
Several organizing principles can help companies sustain both profitability and a sense of purpose.
Good intention to do good is one thing. But perhaps the most the essential thing “business as an agent of world benefit” does is to combine good intention with brilliant management. MIT’s research looks at several organizing principles, and why good management cannot be compromised by simply having good intentions. But there is another real lesson here: having a purpose beyond profits is the best way to realize the highest levels in human motivation. People give their lives to real causes–and our world has plenty of them just waiting for leaders to turn our world’s great challenges into bona fide business opportunities. Purpose, according to Ratan Tata, the recently retired CEO of the Tata Group, is “a spiritual and moral call to action; it is what a person or company stands for.”
See on sloanreview.mit.edu
Smart Grid – We have followed National Grid’s smart grid pilot in Worcester, MA throughout its evolution, and it continues to be one to watch. The smart meter installations have been completed…
Utility executives face difficult challenges in leading the industry-level change needed to secure a prosperous future. National Grid employed Strategic Convening using the Appreciative Inquiry Positive Design Summit to overcome such challenges. This article shares the National Grid experience to orchestrate two major Appreciative Inquiry Summits in Massachusetts. It also presents possible implications for the Energy Utility Industry and for the Energy Utilities that choose to lead the way. The article provides the basis for real optimism among utilities. It shows how relationships and understanding among utilities, regulators, customers, public advocates, solution providers and other key players can be strengthened to enable a profitable and sustainable transition toward a clean energy future.
I think National Grid is an extraordinary company in the utilities domain. They connect with communities and customers, better than any other company of its kind. I have seen them in operation–convening 500 people, stakeholders from every part of the system–to not just talk, but to design together. Its Appreciative Inquiry Summits–large group design labs–have taken place in Worcester; in Albany; and in the whole statewide energy planning in Massachussets with Governor Deval Patrick. Read more