Unconference (2015)

Get Off the Highway (of "Development")

What is an unconference? What is open space technology? What is the World Cafe Methodology?


Recognition of Spirituality

  • Recognition of the quality of human spirituality, which has been part of human cultural ethos and values from ancient times, and to understand how this quality of human spirituality is integral to living sustainably on the planet.

Critique of aSpiritual Discourses

  • Critique of the prevalent a-spiritual discourses on sustainable development which emphasise materialistic logic, technological fixes and industrial solutions and instead to explore spiritually imbued or engaged alternative discourses on sustainability.

Compilation of Traditional Wisdom

  • Compilation of the wisdom of existing cosmological cultures of indigenous communities and to share this wisdom through various modes of communication, and especially to enable young people to contribute their creative energies towards the collective validation of these cultures.

Spaces for Healing

  • Creation of spaces of opportunities for holistic healing experiences which allow individuals and communities of friends to experience and to learn about the inseparability of psychological, physical and planetary ecological well-being and to use this consciousness as the basis of decisions and actions.


Main Objective
To re-cast contemporary global concerns, issues and activities in the language of sustainability from a spiritual point of concern (but going beyond mere religious or New Age articulations/deliberations).

Key Supporting Objectives

  • To review, unlearn and/or learn from the "business-as-usual" approach to sustainable development and its impact on human societies, nature and our common future
  • To explore new conceptions of personhood, community, nature and their deep inter-connectedness: (i) to foster friendship and trust across ethnic communities, age, gender, religious affiliation and regions (ii) to go beyond the focus on the human world, and (iii)to conceive a world from deep inter-connectedness
  • To exchange orientations and experiences of sustainability that are based on or that accept the spiritual point of concern
  • To promote and enable the systematic study of sustainability from a spiritual point of concern
  • To promote and support appropriate solutions and futures of sustainability (challenging the hegemony of mainstream technological or economic points of views/realities/solutions)
  • To explore, encourage and share the development logic of Being (within a nature-oriented cosmology) countering the emphasis on the growth logic of Having (focusing on material or status possessiveness)
  • To explore spirituality-based notions including gross national happiness (GNH) or well-being, spiritual quotient, spiritual capital, "green deen", mindfulness, wakaf, interconnectedness, localisation, servant leadership and many more that have come into contemporary usage, offering spiritually-engaged sustainability new ideas, creative scenarios, novel imagination, innovative designs and an engaging language
  • To promote and support the dynamic institutionalisation of spirituality-based sustainability at local and global levels (going beyond mere religious deliberations or New Age concerns)

Check here for the planetary concerns that emerged from the unconference. More unconference resources here.