Systems & complexity

Co-creation rules of engagement

Co-creation involves bringing diverse stakeholders together to develop solutions that everyone supports and values. It’s an approach that I’ve successfully used in numerous projects over many years, so I can attest to its benefits.

To help people facilitate the co-creation approach, the SDG Lab has put forward a list of co-creation rules of engagement as part of a new toolkit developed to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The co-creation rules of engagement are:

  • Gather different stakeholders from different sectors. Their diverse experiences and viewpoints foster solutions that are relevant and impactful.
  • Ensure everyone contributes. All voices should be heard regardless of experience, background and role.
  • Aim for quantity over quality. The goal is to generate a lot of ideas — prioritization and viability come later.
  • Think blue sky. Move beyond the perceived limitations of your organization and environment.
  • Promote active listening. When other people are talking, take notes and jot down questions.
  • Build on each other’s ideas rather than knocking them down. Instead of saying ‘no’ try ‘yes, and…’.
  • Share ideas in a visual and engaging way: drawing, acting, building… any action that motivates people to move and try new things.
  • Turn on FOCUS mode. Discourage the use of phones and computers. Respect the time people have blocked and be present.
  • Use simple visuals to transform your space. Posters, easel boards and sticky notes are low-cost ways to create a friendly and informal environment.
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Also published on Medium.

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One Comment

  1. This is remarkably simple Bruce – which is exactly why it works. Leveraging a deliberately diverse group is how we optimise value cocreation at Creative Melbourne.
    Thanks for sharing

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