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BK Blog Post
Posted by David Cooperrider.
David L. Cooperrider, Ph.D. is professor and chair of the Program on Business as an Agent of World Benefit at the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western University. In 1987 Dr. Cooperrider and Dr. Suresh Srivastva published the original, foundation theory of AI in an article that has reverberated and changed the field of organizational development.
I am so proud of Case Western Reserve University–the birthplace of appreciative inquiry–and I was thrilled and honored today by the Stiller School of Business at Champlain College with the dedication of the first academically based Center for Appreciative Inquiry, totally devoted to the advancement of the theory and practice AI’s life-centric approach to knowledge and collaborative design of the future.
This all came about because of a transformative gift by CEO Bob Stiller. I started working with Bob some 14 years ago, along with Judy Rodgers, in the days when Bob was leading Green Mountain Coffee Roasters into an era of phenomenal growth and becoming a leader in the sustainability movement with leadership in Fair Trade coffee, greening operations, and community citizenship. It was one of my first well researched examples of the concept of sustainable value. It was the first time the twin combination–the AI Summit and the sustainability agenda–were woven together in a way that created an amazing synergy.
Today when the people of Champlain College dedicated the Center in my name I said: “To be sure, this is not about me, but is testimony to the great power of Appreciative Inquiry as a way of leading and living, and Bob Stiller was touched at a deep level, not only by ‘AI’ as a way of creating a successful business, but by the power of the positive, in all walks of life. ” Lindsey Godwin, one of the best doctoral students I’ve ever worked with, will be the academic leader of the center, and I will serve as Honorary Chair and help catalyze collaboration across the worldwide AI field. Today was filled with deep emotion, gratitude, and recognition of my mentor Suresh Srivastva, and the many other colleagues who have helped co-create appreciative inquiry–as "a positive revolution in change–" amazing colleagues such as Ron Fry, Frank Barrett, Lindsey Godwin, James Ludema, John Carter, Gervase Bushe, Mary Grace Neville, Jackie Stavros, and many outside of Case Western such as Diana Whitney, Kenneth Gergen, Jane Dutton, Bill Pasmore, Peter Sorenson, Diana Bilimoria, Jane Watkins, Michel Avital, Michelle McQuaid, Sue Hammond, Danielle Zandee, Judy Rodgers, Jackie Kelm, Ada Jo Mann, Bernard Mohr, and many others.
This press release issued by Case Western Reserve University shares more!