OvationNet is the result of a close collaboration between David Cooperrider and the founders of iCohere, Pascal Kaplan and Soren Kaplan. The goal of OvationNet is simple: to provide consultants, change agents and organizations with leading edge capabilities in Appreciative Inquiry that advance AI practice in the field.
OvationNet makes available tools and resources that harness the power of online learning and web community technology in ways that support individual, group, organizational and whole system change processes.
OvationNet was created to address a number of important questions, whose answers represent the next generation of Appreciative Inquiry:
- How can we most effectively capture, share and use stories to highlight the core strengths of a system?
- How do we most effectively engage the whole system in AI, even when time constraints exist and part of the system is unable to meet together face-to-face?
- How do we sustain and grow the momentum created through AI Summits so it leads to true innovation and inspired positive change?
- How do we expand the positive impact of Appreciative Inquiry in corporations, non-profits and non-governmental organizations, educational institutions, and the world?
OvationNet represents an effort to address these questions whose answers represent the next generation of Appreciative Inquiry:
- Access a suite of online AI learning modules
- Extend the impact of face-to-face AI summits by engaging hundreds or thousands of virtual participants
- Support project teams following AI summits to help drive and monitor implementation
- Deliver a virtual online summit that draws on the strengths of the whole system
- Create and embed a new capability for AI that connects together social networks and organizational resources in ways that drive innovation and positive change
Organizations like Roadway Express, Green Mountain Coffee, the EPA, the US Navy, the Toronto District School Board, World Vision International and others are transforming their organizational strategies and processes through Appreciative Inquiry (AI).
Established by David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastava at Case Western Reserve University, Appreciative Inquiry mobilizes the speed of collective imagination and collaboration, bringing together hundreds – and sometimes thousands – of people in a compelling process that leads to new innovations and actionable projects, all focused on substantially elevating organizational performance and results.
OvationNet's leaders include:
David Cooperrider, Ph.D.
David L. Cooperrider is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Organizational Behavior at the Weatherhead School of Management, Case Western Reserve University. Professor Cooperrider is past President of the National Academy of Management's OD Division and has lectured and taught at Stanford, University of Chicago, Katholieke University in Belgium, MIT, University of Michigan, Cambridge and others.
David has served as researcher and advisor to a wide variety of organizations including, for example, Yellow Roadway Corp., Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, McCann-Erickson, Nutrimental Foods, World Vision, Cleveland Clinic, American Red Cross, and United Way of America. Most of the projects are inspired by the Appreciative Inquiry (AI) methodology for which Professor Cooperrider is best known. His founding work in this area is creating a positive revolution in the leadership of change; it is helping companies all over the world discover the power of the strength-based approaches to planning and multi-stakeholder cooperation. Admiral Clark, the CNO of the Navy, for example recently met with David to bring AI into the Navy for a multiyear project on Bold and Enlightened Naval Leadership. And in June 2004 Cooperrider was asked by the United Nations Global Compact to design and facilitate a historic, unprecedented Summit meeting between Kofi Annan and 500 business leaders to unite the strengths of markets with the authority of universal ideals to make globalization work for everyone. Cooperrider's work is especially important because of its ability to enable positive change in systems of very large and complex scale.
David often serves as meeting speaker and leader of large group, interactive conference events. His dynamic ideas have been published in journals such as Administrative Science Quarterly, Human Relations, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, The OD Practitioner, and in research series such as Advances in Strategic Management. More popularly, Professor Cooperrider's work has been covered by The New York Times; Forbes Magazine; Science, Fast Company, Fortune, Christian Science Monitor, San Francisco Chronicle and others. He has been recipient of Best Paper of the Year Awards at the Academy of Management and top researcher of the year at Case and numerous clients have received awards for their work with Appreciative Inquiry. Among his highest honors David was invited to design a series of dialogues among 25 of the world's top religious leaders, started by His Holiness the Dalai Lama who said, "If only the world's religious leaders could just know each other, the world will be a better place." Using AI, the group has had meetings in Jerusalem and at the Carter Center with President Jimmy Carter in Atlanta. David was recognized in 2000 as among the top ten visionaries in the field by Training Magazine and in 2004 received a prestigious award in Washington D.C. for distinguished contribution to the field of organizational learning from the American Society for Training and Development.
David has published nine books and authored close to 50 articles. Cooperrider's volumes include Appreciative Inquiry Berrett-Kohler (with Diana Whitney); Organizational Courage and Executive Wisdom and Appreciative Leadership and Management (both with Suresh Srivastva). David is editor of a new academic book series Advances in Appreciative Inquiry (with Michel Avital) published by Elsevier Science. David's wife Nancy is an artist and Hannah and Matt are in high school in Chagrin Falls Ohio with oldest son Daniel in college at University of Chicago.
Lindsey N. Godwin, Ph.D.
Lindsey N. Godwin is an Associate Professor of Management at Champlain College in Burlington, Vermont. She holds a M.S. in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University and a Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior from Case Western Reserve University, where she studied with the founders and leading thought-leaders in Appreciative Inquiry (AI).
Lindsey served as a Research Associate for the Center for Business as Agent of World Benefit (B.A.W.B.) at Case Western Reserve University (now the Fowler Center for Sustainable Value) and remains a creative contributor today. Through her work with B.A.W.B., and in collaboration with iCohere, she helped organize and lead several international online conferences, bringing together thousands of individuals from six continents to explore how business can be a force for positive social change. She also organized a multi-university summit to envision integrating business and society issues into management school curriculum and served as the co-editor of Center's Interactive Working Paper Series.
Her work has been published in a variety of journals and books, and presented at national and international conferences, including the Annual Academy of Management Meetings, and most recently in the Oxford Handbook of Positive Organizational Scholarship. She is currently serving as a guest editor for a forthcoming special issue on positive organizational ethics for the Journal of Business Ethics, as well as a special issue on advances in the AI Summit for he AI Practitioner Journal. She is also an editor for the forthcoming 5th volume in the research book series Advances in Appreciative Inquiry.
She remains very active in the AI practitioner community, where she is a knowledge manager for the AI Commons, the largest open-source resource space for Appreciative Inquiry in the world. She served as the Program Chair for the 2007 International Appreciative Inquiry Conference in Orlando, FL and was a Co-chair for the 2009 World Appreciative Inquiry Conference, held in Kathmandu, Nepal.
With a passion for helping organizations leverage their potential through strength-based change, Lindsey continues to help organize and facilitate Appreciative Inquiry processes with a variety of organizations. Organizations she has worked with include:
- World Vision (an international child advocacy organization)
- Houston Independent School District (the 7th largest district in the US)
- The California Teachers Association
- Imagine Nepal
- The United Nations
- The Aspen Institute's Teaching Innovation Project
- Case Western Reserve University Weatherhead School of Management
- Business as Agent of World Benefit at Case Western Reserve University
- American Society of Association Executives
Pascal Kaplan, Ph.D.
The co-founder and CEO of iCohere, Inc., Dr. Pascal Kaplan blends a background in education and organizational development with skills as a software designer. His special expertise is helping groups learn how to use innovative technology to support organizational and cultural change that moves the groups towards collaborative knowledge-sharing.
Pascal’s years of experience include providing strategic consulting services to the federal government (Department of Defense, National Defense University, USAID, and the National Institutes of Health), large and small national and professional associations (American Society of Association Executives, the National Association for Education of Young Children, America’s Promise Alliance), accrediting bodies (Western Association of Schools and Colleges), and commercial enterprises (AT&T, Phonak, Bank of America).
Before starting iCohere, Pascal founded The Kaplan Consulting Group, a software and consulting services firm that worked with Fortune 500 companies, designing and building software to support enterprise business processes. Prior to becoming involved in technology, he served as Dean of the School of Liberal Arts at John F. Kennedy University in the California Bay Area. He also spent 2 years consulting with the Leadership Communications Department at Bank of America, working with the bank's Executive Committee to develop and implement a mission and values initiative for the organization's 90,000 employees. Pascal serves on the Board of Directors of several non-profit organizations. He holds a Ph.D. from Harvard University.
Soren Kaplan, Ph.D.
Soren Kaplan is a California native whose grandparents immigrated to the United States from France. His dual American-French citizenship, combined with a family heritage rooted in art, design, education, and religion instilled in him an appreciation for diverse experiences, cultures and a life chock-full of surprise. Soren has worked within large corporations, founded and advises start-ups, consults to global companies, and educates students and executives about the art and discipline of strategic thinking, innovation and leadership for business breakthroughs. His unique ability to uncover surprises that are “hidden in plain sight” helps leaders shift their mindsets to rethink and reinvent their organizations.
Soren's passion for breakthrough innovation is exemplified through his diverse experience – from writing the book Leapfrogging (www.leapfrogging.com), to leading the internal strategy and innovation group at Hewlett-Packard (HP) during the roaring 1990's in the Silicon Valley, to co-founding the web collaboration software company iCohere (www.icohere.com), to consulting to start-ups and global companies. As a co-Founder and Principal of InnovationPoint (www.innovation-point.com), he leads strategic initiatives for organizations in the areas of new product, service and business model innovation. Soren's clients include Visa, Disney, Colgate-Palmolive, Kimberly-Clark, PepsiCo, Medtronic, Aviva (United Kingdom), Philips (The Netherlands), SK Telecom (South Korea), Grundfos (Denmark), Tekes (Finland) and numerous others global brands and firms. Soren is also an Adjunct Professor within the Imagineering Academy at NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences in The Netherlands. He currently sits on the advisory board of PocketOffice (www.getpocketoffice.com), an early stage start-up focused on mobile applications for the small business market.
Soren has presented at numerous conferences and institutions including Innovation Convergence and the Harvard Business School. Quotes, articles and book chapters from Soren have appeared in publications including Fast Company, Strategy & Leadership, The International Handbook on Innovation, Practicing Organizational Development, Strategic Change, and The Journal of Creativity and Innovation Management, among others. He holds Master's and Ph.D. degrees in Organizational Psychology and resides in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife, two daughters, and hypo-allergenic cat.
Kristin believes that magic can happen when people come together around issues they care deeply about. In her work as Principal of Community Strengths, she embraces transformative dialogic and relational models that engage diverse strengths and perspectives to address social issues and promote resilience and positive human development throughout the lifespan. Kristin brings extensive strategic planning and communications expertise to support groups, organizations, and systems working to create positive change in communities.
Several projects include Families Thrive (www.familiesthrive.org)– a community creating a responsive system to children and youth impacted by domestic violence; Choppin' it Up (www.choppinitup.org) - a youth-led dialogue for positive change; and Creating Aging-Friendly Communities (www.agingfriendly.org) – a Community of Practice whose members are working to make communities more livable for all ages.
Kristin provides strategic consulting and facilitation support for OvationNet. Past projects include: American Society for Association Executives Global Summit on Social Responsibility and the Houston Healthy Kids, Healthy Schools Summit. Also in partnership with iCohere, she has supported large scale change projects and conferences including the America's Promise Alliance Action Forum and the What Works: Strengths-based Approaches to Early Childhood Education Conference.
Kristin is a Taos Institute Associate and holds a Ph.D. in Social Sciences from Tilburg University and an M.B.A from University of California at Davis. Most importantly, she is a wife and mother of four, who teach her all the time how to be the best person she can be.