Knowledge mapping is a general term that covers
  • mapping public issues ("social messes," "wicked problems")(e.g., Robert Horn [see "Focus on Public Issue Mapping" below])
  • mind maps (e.g., Inspiration software)
  • pattern languages (e.g., Christopher Alexander)
  • Dialogue Mapping (e.g., Cog Nexus Institute)
  • Graphic Facilitation (e.g., David Sibbet)
  • geographical information mapping (GIS - Geographical Information Systems) and may include more traditional visuals such as
  • quantitative charts and graphs
  • process and procedure flow charts
  • timelines
  • and all other forms of visual presentation of information, especially of relationships (e.g., Edward Tufte)


Knowledge mapping offers a tremendous resource for Deliberation about issues or problems. We can lay out what we collectively know, visually clarifying relationships among the relevant factors, actors, sectors, etc., involved with the problem being deliberated. This can be done before, during and/or after any particular deliberation, containing and delineating the complexity of the issue or situation in a confrontable, usable form, embracing the full spectrum of arguments and options. Different groups working on a particular problem can simultaneously or subsequently can add their insights to the maps. If a group is working on a problem similar to an earlier group's, the later one can use the other's maps as a template for launching their own. Websites and publications based on issue maps could inform the public in an unbiased way, and councils of citizens, stakeholders, legislators and/or administrators could be informed by and/or create such issue maps.

Robert Horn lists a number of different kinds of knowledge maps he is developing for policy and issue work (for an overview, see ), including the following:
  • prototype issue maps
  • dilemmas and paradoxes maps
  • cross-boundary causality and dynamics maps
  • policy context maps
  • argumentation maps
  • strategy maps
  • options maps
  • scenario maps
  • Stakeholder goals, values and pressure maps
  • agreement templates
  • unknown territory maps
  • mythosphere, media and public rhetoric maps
  • Worldview influences maps
Knowledge mapping can be used to aid other visionary approaches seeking to summarize the full complexity of issues, such as:
  • Possibility/Problem Focusers (Robert Theobald)
  • Dynamic Knowledge Repository (Doug Engelbart)
  • issue-based virtual intelligence websites (Robert Steele)
Although knowledge mapping has been so far used primarily to chart out the tangles of negative factors related to an issue, it could just as well be used to map positive aspects in the spirit of Appreciative Inquiry and Asset Based Community Development. Among the positive factors that could be mapped around an issue, organization or community are relevant:
  • resources
  • assets
  • creative options
  • innovations
  • networks
  • visions This is all fabulous to find, AND I would add (or offer as a matrix for it) Ken Wilber's four quadrants (interior/exterior-individual/collective) and Clare Graves'Spiral Dynamics. (Max Gail ) The common citizen becoming oriented, through graphically represented conceptual frameworks will be able to focus her own line of thinking and her own learning road. She will be able to communicate back and contribute her own inquires and ideas more effectively. The common citizen will have much more power to learn and participate. What about maps of consciousness and individuality which prevent people from being willing to work toward a preferable future over the present one we are headed for? What allows people to change and why wouldn't they want to work for survival. Maps of psychology/the human mind representing the individual's part in change and how to achieve it. Otherwise, you end up having to force the issues of change which can result in repression, loss of individual power/democracy, and conflict. What are the ways society could develop greater commitment without becoming the change police. How do you facilitate change in the human heart and foster tolerance of diverse thinking versus ignoring those who don't agree with you. Knowledge is not enough. There is a whole psychology of consciousness and action that must be taken into consideration. Culture is a product of individual consciousness and history. There are psychological obstacles here that are first and formost. Those committed to social change understand the present maps b/c they are already committed. You speak to an audience of sympathizers. What about everyone else?

THE NEW WORLD ASSEMBLY A Government Over Nations Weekly and private meetings...

When the weave of a living world is weakened by a long thread of abuse, it is lawful, it is necessary to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form as seems most likely to effect the safety and happiness of all. For our principle and guiding light, we hold to Nature. Ruling all existence with singleness of vision, she governs Earth and stars with one embrace. She makes one country of us all, sovereign and indivisible, standing over nations, subject not to their authority, only God's. In awe of her power, in wonder at the congruity of her organizing principle, we join our action with hers. By convening this government and dedicating its process to the inclusivity that characterizes and celebrates Nature's genius, we formally accept the duties of the world.

Murder is not dignified by war's name. Having the greater power, we remove from nations the right to conduct war. Then the manufacture of war shall be converted to serve healing restoring the Earth to wholeness and health. Destiny, being precise, makes this moment of decision clear, turning our course away from the treason and catastrophe of narrow concerns. Humankind has a say, but it is hardly what we think, as we live in equal measure with every other thing. There are no masters here. There is no ruling caste. Each face is God's. And no force or alliance of forces surmounts the power of a raindrop to stir a seed and call forth life. Then where, but from that stirring is true authority derived? We convene this government then not to gain influence, but to add our silence, our voice, and our whole heart to staying the mast of Nature's Government, to plotting the course of kindness, and comforting the voyage of our souls, God's grace being there.

The New World Assembly c/o Michael Bridge 822 Jewell Avenue Sebastopol, California 95472 (707) 823-7795





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see where we are also listing similar practices

  --Michel Bauwens (Not signed in).....Sun Jan 31 00:53:33 -0800 2010

The Bohm Dialogue, especially Collective Reflection has significance for me in terms of artistic critique and dialogue.

If one wanted to connect this to Jungian thought I'd relate to that.

  --Srule Brachman (Not signed in).....Mon May 21 17:09:16 +0000 2012





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