How can I work with others to sustain and develop Paulo’s creative values as we try to make the world a better place?
Following the Memorial Gathering at Monkton Wyld in July 2014, a group of Paulo’s friends and colleagues met at Tamera to carry forward his ideas about growing integrated systems within communities - communities designed to move beyond a 'sustainable' existence to one where their presence helps to regenerate the depleted environments in which they are situated.
Individual disaster relief initiatives often fail to one extent or another because a solution to one problem creates a problem elsewhere: by contrast, integrated design enfolds all the necessary components into one educational system in which all waste and by-products become resources for other components in the system, where available energy sources are captured for local distribution and use and where investments are made by communities themselves through affordable credit services. Together, these systems have the potential to optimise the potential for economic diversity, food security, health and overall resilience of a community.
Tamera is an international training and research centre that is based around a project for exploring, developing and creating working models of solutions that address the urgent global issues of water, food, energy and human coexistence without violence.
Within the context of Tamera and beyond, what we call Blueprint is a group of like-minded people that to a large extent have been connected by Paulo, whose vision of integrated design of ecologically beneficial human habitation remains live and valid and forms our common ground.
Thus, Blueprint is a collaborative community whose members share a common set values but who bring distinctive skills as 'knowledge carriers' that can add real value to project implementation.
Ruth's summary presentation Tamera Blueprint meeting April 2016 - exploring Blueprint identity and purpose.
The Blueprint Initiative
The Blueprint Initiative is an alliance of highly-skilled specialists in diverse fields, who develop integrative patterns for regenerative human settlements. This includes four aspects:
- model building
- supportive intervention.
The research is applied, tested and integrated in model settlements, which are also training centres. The results of this research can then be used to support those designing or redesigning permanent or temporary settlements, both in stable and in crisis zones.
Contributors to the Blueprint initiative provide direct support to crisis zones worldwide. Through the development of the Blueprint framework, we aim to coordinate our efforts into a coherent task-force, which carries out Blueprint Interventions in crisis areas. These interventions provide direct support and education through practical implementation, promoting local-scale strategies for decentralisation and autonomy. This entails networking with other communities, local experts, governments, donors and NGOs.
Blueprint integrated design
The stated aim of Blueprint is to facilitate appropriate systems of community recovery and development whose application results in robust communities that are more resilient to natural hazards, climate change, food, energy and housing insecurity and economic crises. In addressing these issues, it is entirely possible to design human habitats and communities that are economically vibrant and at the same time do no harm to their local ecology; elements of these designs are already proven to work in different parts of the world.
However, there have been few examples of projects in which all the different components have been implemented together in a joined-up, integrated fashion, whereby the systems are mutually beneficial. The desired outcomes are better achieved when specialists in water and waste management, ecological agriculture, autonomous energy supply and sustainable building merge their efforts to optimise the use of inputs and eliminate the pooling of wastes.
The unique and distinguishing feature of the integrated approach being developed by the Blueprint community is that the different design elements are implemented together in a process of learning, enabling each to support and benefit the other, thus allowing for the multiplication of opportunities and improvements.
Consequently, the main practical expressions of Blueprint entail:
- Challenges to existing orthodoxy concerning interventions to build a community’s resilience (in the broader context) and to anticipate future hazards.
- Linkage to climate adaptation, especially in regions that are known to be prone to climate extremes.
- Implications for post-disaster recovery policy and practice.
A change of culture is needed.