The Art of Hosting

This is how this thread started:

"Is anyone interested in collaborating on a simple research/evaluation process following up with people who have participated in AoH" posted by Stephen Duns, beginning of October'10.

We continued the conversation on the Wall of this group, until we moved over here to a separate conversation thread. Some snippets of the conversation:

myself: "Do you know that a few years ago they did something like you are asking here in the Columbus-Ohio project on Health. There is also a report available." (see under Resources -> Research Papers)

Stepehen describing more of what the intention is of the project:
"We are doing an evaluation of the impact of the AoH training in Melbourne/Australia (approx 320 participatns so far). We are in the process of developing a logic map, from which our research questions will emerge. We will follow that up with qualitative data collection to identify themes (not sure how many people yet, as it depends on the research questions). There might be a small literature review too. We will then do quantitative data collection (all participants) to determine the extent that the themes apply. We will then do the analysis and report.
So you (or anyone) can participate at any level, including
- reviewing the logic map
- reviewing the research questions
- doing some data collection (including broadening it out beyond Aus)
- helping with the analysis of themes and data
- participating in writing or reviewing the report"

Jerry added his bit:
"I am very intersting in joining the discussion regarding evaluation. I am involved with an initiative here that has 3 residential trainings (3 day, 2day, 2 days) over the next 8 months based on AoH practices. ... There are 7 different cohort groups participating. The cohort groups will use the AoH learnings to help them design a project to address various social determinants of health affecting children 0-5 years old. The project must have a strong connection to the local community. Once designed the project will be funded for 3 years for implementation.
During this 4-year period the entire initaitive will be followed by an evaluation team that will look at both the impact of the AoH training on how the participants shift (if they do) leadership practices and the projects themselves."

Judy and Holly expressed interest... then Stephen with the latest news:
"A group of us reviewd the project logic yesterday and reached some more clarity! We will now be able to develop the research questions. I will post those (hopefully later today) on here for some comment and feedback. On wed next week I will be meeting with the Head of the School of Psychology at Deakin to review the research questions finally too."

Views: 158

Replies to This Conversation

Chris Corrigan just posted three .pdf documents on Developmental Evaluation. He says: "This is the first thing I have seen on evaluation that has got me excited about the connection between complexity, systems thinking and change." Check it out!
Here is the questionnaire that Stephen and his colleagues developed to send to the participants after the AoH training. They used the online site Survey Monkey.

From the AoH listserv January 2013:


Dear AoH colleagues,


I am often asked if there are any evaluations of the Art of Hosting that can be shared. Our friend Stephen Duns has one his firm did in Australia and there is a Master’s thesis evaluation of work done in Columbus, Ohio, but beyond that the evaluation literature is a bit thin. In 2011 we held several Art of Hosting trainings in Minnesota. Jodi Sandfort, Kathryn Quick and Nicholas Stuber interviewed 100 of the participants in the AoH trainings. These were extensive one-on-one interviews sometimes lasting 2 hours. Attached is their report. I think you will find it helpful for review and perhaps as something you can share when asked about evaluations.


They are very interested in a thoughts/reflections you might have about the report. Please share any reflections you may have. It is their intent (and our intent here in the region) to continue to evaluate AoH as a way for us to deepen and improve our practice and support our growing local community of practice.


Best to everyone in 2013.


In peace,



Jerry Nagel

Meadowlark Institute

16982 Stakke Lake Road

Lake Park, MN 56554


Thanks Jerry and all that are offering this work.

I particularly like the stories of how people take their experience and use in their own hosting. 
A participant at a fall AoH for BALLE, Thea Maria Carlson, shared one of these that I particularly appreciated. Her work to help improve a Biodynamics Conference in Wisconsin using what she learned. 
For inspiration.
Happy New Year all.
Thank you for sharing this Jerry and Tenneson. It's actually great material 'to sell the message', I think, especially when people feel reluctant to use dialogue and connection instead of structures and models to solve challenges. Best wishes for 2013!


I love seeing this. Thanks for sharing, Jerry.

What a joy and delight to receive this today to set the tone for what is next.

I will read it over.



Marcello Lacroix



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