Alice Alexander's blog

Balancing Privacy and Community with Design in Cohousing

Reposted from PBS website: http://www.pbs.org/newshour/updates/balancing-privacy-community-design-c...

Architect Laura Fitch describes cohousing communities as “privacy within your home and community at your doorstep.”

Community Renewal: Re-engage, Recommit and Revitalize

Are you observing any of these symptoms of burnout and disengagement in your community:
· Participation at community meetings, in work projects and on teams has decreased
· Difficulty with leadership development: vacant leadership positions or the same people are in leadership roles in perpetuity
· Signs of unresolved conflict such as people going out of their way to avoid specific people in your community
· Gossip about community members is increasing
· Confusion about who to go to within the community about specific concerns and issues
· "Authorities" within or outside of your community are contacted instead of people speaking directly with a community member
· Things have changed in the community, but not for the better: it doesn't look as attractive, more money is going to upkeep, there is less interaction within the community

An Interview With Alice Alexander About The National Cohousing Conference

Reposted from the FIC blog: This is an interview with Alice Alexander, Executive Director of the Cohousing Association of the US and co-founder of the Durham Central Park Cohousing Community in North Carolina. She took some time to answer our questions about the National Cohousing Conference in Nashville May 19-21, which the Fellowship for Intentional Community is co-sponsoring.

R.I.P. Jan Gudmand-Hoyer, a Visionary in Cohousing

The man who started cohousing in Denmark, and therefore the man who started cohousing, died the other day at 81 years old. In 1964 Jan gathered together friends and acquaintances to talk about housing. He asked them to imagine a lifestyle and a place that did not yet exist, a place that could suit the needs of ordinary citizens, an intentional place that was different from what mom and pop, or grandma and grandpa had created for themselves. “What really makes sense for people in late twentieth century, western industrialized societies?” was his query.

Spring is a great time to visit cohousing or show off your community!

New to cohousing? The National Cohousing Open House Day April 29, 2017 is perfect for getting a real taste for what it would be like to live in a cohousing community. Plan a whole vacation around an area that is featuring several tours, or just find a single tour near your home. Seeing is believing. You are sure to come away educated and inspired and wishing for great neighbors like the ones who will host your tours. Perhaps you will even find your next home in an existing community!

Community as Economic Engine

Laird Schaub and Terry O'Keefe and will be presenting "Community as Economic Engine" at the 2017 National Cohousing Conference in Nashville TN, May 19-21 . Please join us! Laird offered a version to a packed audience at the 2015 Cohousing Conference in Durham.

Intentional communities sort broadly into two kinds: those where members share income (roughly 10-12 percent of the North American field today), and those where they don’t (the vast majority). In the case of the former, the community takes primary responsibility for the economic welfare of its members. .....For non-income-sharing communities, however, the collective tends to leave the economics of member households untouched. This is a huge difference....Both because most intentional communities don’t share income and because the potential there is less explored, the primary focus of this examination will be the economic relationship between the collective and the individual in non-income-sharing groups. I’m going to first describe what’s extant, and then attempt to make the case for shifting it to something else.

Rob Sandelin: His insight and humor will continue to ripple through our communities

We are saddened by the passing of cohousing pioneer, Rob Sandelin, a member of Sharingwood Community for nearly 30 years. Rob was a prolific poster to the cohousing-l email discussion group, and positively influenced the development and growth of communities throughout the U.S. with his wisdom. Below are two stories posted on the cohousing-l email discussion group:

In 1999, our forming community brought Rob in to lead a consensus workshop for us. The work we did together was transformative for me personally and for our community. There are a lot of things I could say about Rob, but the most profound is this story that I now share with every consensus workshop I lead. Seventeen years later, I still tear up EVERY TIME I tell it.

Cooperative Culture Revisited

Today I'm blowing on the coals of an exchange I had right before Thanksgiving with my friend, who offered the reflections below on my blog of Nov 20, 2016 Defining Cooperative Culture....
As I am taking a few days off work, I thought I would comment on your latest very interesting blog. I think you are overemphasizing the differences between competitive and cooperative cultures.....The points you make have become staples of well-managed companies because they work.
....When he writes that I'm overemphasizing the difference between the two I wonder what familiarity he has with cooperative culture. I don't say that to be snarky, but because I've worked as a consultant to cooperative groups for 30 years and the vast majority of my clients haven't—to their detriment— bothered to define what cooperative culture is. In fact, a lot of my workload stems from groups that are ostensibly committed to cooperative principles yet bring unexamined competitive behaviors to the attempt, and it's a train wreck.

How Cohousing can Unite a Divided America

I’m presenting an intensive at the 2017 National Cohousing Conference May 19th in Nashville. I’ve been struggling with the content.

It was initially going to be a redux of the “diverse personalities” retreat I led in Arcosanti in the fall, but after being a part of the Women’s March on January 21st, it came together for me as a workshop melding cultural competency, diversity and community activism.

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Alice Alexander's blog