October 12, 2010

Drucker students participate in Cleveland Summit on Sustainability and Appreciative Inquiry

Seven Drucker MBA students – Julia Baumgaertner, Tawni Cranz, Sean Finegan, Amy Gardner, Caroline Hood, Anugrah Singh, and Josh Villanueva – recently traveled to Cleveland, Ohio, as delegates to a summit focusing on sustainability and the appreciative inquiry method set forth by David Cooperrider: Sustainable Cleveland 2019.

Sustainable Cleveland 2019 is a 10-year initiative that engages people from all walks of life, working together to design and develop a thriving and resilient Cleveland region that leverages its wealth of assets to build economic, social and environmental well being for all

Sustainability is becoming embedded in the very core of organizations. It is critical for future vitality, and to maintain competitiveness. Cooperrider provided the framework to drive sustainability in Cleveland. By using the Appreciative Inquiry approach, he seeks out and focuses on the strengths of the city’s citizens. Interestingly, Drucker also advocated for appreciation, stating “the task of leadership is to create an alignment of strengths…making a system’s weaknesses irrelevant”.

The Summit’s goal was to build an economic engine to empower a green city on a blue lake. This is no easy feat, but the objectives are clearly laid out: activate local resources, build resilience, accelerate momentum, and take action.

Caroline Hood reported that ”as Drucker delegates, we took a lot away from the Summit. It was interesting to get involved with attendees, who could speak to the past, present, and future of Cleveland.