Resonant co-creation is process that can drive strategic innovation by integrating best practices from the disciplines of human-centered design and organizational transformation.
In resonant co-creation, the transformation of worldview—the combination of beliefs, attitudes, and values that structure experience—generates new conceptual and interrelational space among participants conducive to strategic innovation.
The quality of results produced by any system depends on the quality of awareness from which people in the system operate. The formula for a successful change process is not “form follows function,” but “form follows consciousness” -The Presencing Institute
The choice of the term “resonant” stems from Marilyn Schlitz et al.’s model of the five developmental levels of social consciousness (2010). Resonant consciousness is an expanded awareness that leads to prosocial experiences and behaviors, “in which people report a sense of essential interrelatedness with others – a field of shared experience and emergence that is felt and expressed in social groups” (Schlitz et al., 2010, p. 23). Resonant consciousness requires shared attention, good feelings (such as trust and empathy), and synchrony (Tickle-Degnan & Rosenthal, 1990), all of which are essential skills integral to the co-creative mindset.
Resonant co-creation rests on a particular perspective on human consciousness. It accepts first that human consciousness is not an accurate perception of reality, but rather is a filter conditioned by biology and human experience. “Most of us think that what we perceive is the whole story, ‘reality’ unmitigated. It screens, deciding which perceptions are significant and which are useful to the task at hand. It’s only when we realize this and intentionally open ourselves to the wider picture that we begin to actively focus our attention.” (Mandl 2013, p. 10). That wider picture is an intersubjective, interintentional space. David Bohm, from whom many schools of dialogue derive, said:
Genuine judgments should come out of an act of perception rather than out of a reflex. But this will not be possible unless the reflexes of thought and feeling are suspended. Because the reflexes are so habitual, however, it is very hard to be aware that they are acting. Such awareness requires serious attention.
Bohm summarizes a core principle of resonant co-creation – the suspension of reflexive, conditioned thought and being present, or mindful, to the dynamics of the entire space. This requires setting aside the personal ego and its motivations temporarily and developing an awareness that can be described as an expansion of consciousness. Thus, although it builds upon the received notion of co-creation, and in fact it can occur in the very same activities, resonant co-creation requires that the people involved have keen observation skills, empathy, and mindfulness.