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Tipu Ake ki te Ora

Growing the future - An organic
leadership model for innovative
organisations and communities



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from nature
with its diverse species
all growing





powered by our sun - life gifts us all our renewable energy sources

visions of wellness for our
global world






An Organic Leadership Model
(where nature is our teacher)

Self help tools that nurture growth by using
Living Systems Thinking in Organisations and Communities


learning through school and life to grow within strong diverse communities using international networks



We share the Tipu Ake ki te Ora Lifecycle - an easily applied, and action focused leadership model that exploits Kiwi style teamwork. It provides new tools for organisations that wish to grow into dynamic living entities, rather than just behaving like machines. See our summary paper Living Systems Thinking - Leadership Tools for Growing Living Organisations and Communities that thrive in a world of complexity , also our paper on Lifelong Learning - Nature's Way and the Tipu Ake Rugby Scrum team learning metaphors and lessons.

  • Tipu Ake is an organic project / program model that helps us operate in a world of complexity, chaos, interdependency and ambiguity. It embraces international leadership model thinking; see supporting stories, feedback from users and Tipu Ake Blogs. It supports best practices for sustainability and management. (It maps onto the Cynefin Framework that illuminates the simple, complicated, complex, chaotic and disorder domains that life requires us to work across)
  • It is a cyclic behavioural model that can help any innovative organisation, community, project, group, team, or even a family or individual that needs to make new things happen. It is at the the roots of lifelong learning

  • Tipu Ake is a form of Biomimicry - Learning to thrive in a world of complexity and inter-dependence by taking lessons from Nature in the Whirinaki Rainforest
  • It was inspired by the self-transformation stories of Te Whaiti School. Here a pro-active underemployed Maori community called on its own internal strength and traditional wisdom to grow its school from failure and imminent closure to the top of its class. See videoclip.

  • Their unique processes were captured after the event as the Tipu Ake Lifecycle by a team of volunteers from Te Whaiti, the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) and other NZ organisations. Student teams at AUT and other volunteers around the world continue to work together on a range of innovative projects to help them share it. The model was prototyped on pioneering workshops at AUT and is now part of Living Systems Thinking workshops delivered in New Zealand and alsewhere.
  • Its full name is Tipu Ake ki te Ora (growing from within, ever upwards towards wellbeing). It is generously shared with the world, dedicated to the wellbeing of all its future grandchildrens. Anyone can download it, (including a Powerpoint presentation with French and Estonian translations.).
  • All intellectual property associated with Tipu Ake will continue to remain for all time at the place of its origin, Te Whaiti Nui-a-Toi. The children and people there are its Kaitiaki (Guardians). Acknowledgement is by koha (a gift in return based on its value to you).

If you are interested in organisational or community development, living organisations, /visioning, program / portfolio management, project offices and organic program leadership, then see how the Te Whaiti school and Community are connecting with others internationally to share and apply radical Tipu Ake thinking on their Kaitiakitanga (Sustainability) Program at www.kaitiakitanga.net, protecting their culture and rainforest. The school now has a radical research project underway to help all better understand the value of ecosysytem services that rainforests provide to support life on our planet

Members of the Kaitiakitanga network presenting Tipu Ake at overseas conferences in 2004-5 established important international links. This resulted in them bringing sustainable development guru Hunter Lovins to New Zealand in 2006 to facilitate public forums where many young New Zealanders shared the stage with her, reflecting on: Learning from Nature, Smart Environments, Smart Agriculture, Smart Communities, Smart Cities, Smart Business, Smart Economy, Smart Learning. Download video on each. See also what young Kiwi's found on their 2007 learning journey to the US. Watch Kiwi youth with Michael Braungart on "Redesigning our Future" - a Cradle to Cradle design forum. Read about the Hikoi - Maori learning /sharing journey to Bioneers 2008. Find out about forums with David Bellamy on conservation and Norbert Hoeller and Megan Schuknecht on Biomimicry

Tipu Ake values/ behaviours that grow strong Ohu (teams that volunteer energy)

When we focus on outcomes, nothing is a barrier
We have no room around here for matapiko (stingy) gatekeepers
Sense what is happening around us; reflect on it together to learn
Own your own processes; keep them simple and effective (KISS principle)
Nurture win-win alliances; look outward to connect with external energy
Leave our (organisational) hats at the door - (no external power)
A kumura (sweet potato) never calls itself sweet - that is for the eaters to say )
Find the courage to face the hard issues - explore outside our comfort zones
Our biggest enemy is the one within us; conquer that first and the rest are easy

VIEW MOVIE - Mindwalk - a scientist,a politician and artist explore Living Systems Thinking (108M)

Stop press: To Survive and Thrive - Read Tipu Ake Lessons for Europe in Times of Chaos
TEDTALK VIDEO THRIIVABILTY - The Pattern of Living Systems - with Michelle Holliday , Canada
THE BIOLOGY OF BUSINESS - click to view slideshow by Sharon Vanderkaay of Farrow Architects
WANT TO HELP SOMEONE? SHUT UP AND LISTEN! TED Video by Ernesto Sirolli in Christchurch


This URL is www.tipuake.org.nz



1. To Survive and Thrive ..Tipu Ake Lessons for Europe in times of chaos
2. NEW
"Lifelong Learning - Nature's Way" - Tipu Ake as a learning model
3 . UPDATE " New Tools For Growing Living Organisations and Communities" Radical tools for program management in a world of complexity and inter-dependence - builds on our paper at PMI Global Forum, Anaheim. Nov 2004
4 .
UPDATE Downloadable Tipu Ake Model now includes "The Leadership Tripod" and Mycorrhyzal Fungi Networks - Partnerships below the ground level.
5 . PODCASTS Listen to Stranova and Living Systems Thinking interviews - Blog
6 . VIDEO: Visit Downloadable Video Libary, interviews, stories, apply Tipu Ake
7 . Thanks to those who participated in workshops "Tools for Growing Living Organisations" run in New York, London, Mid Wales UK, Finland and San Francisco during August 2005 click here for report

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(c) 2001 onwards Te Whaiti Nui-a-Toi. All intellectual property protected under the provisions of the Treaty of Waitangi 1840 and the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (Adopted by General Assembly 13 Sept 2007) - details www.tewhaiti-nui-a-toi.maori.nz

(The Tipu Ake Team thanks AUT for helping incubate this model and in particular the many student teams, staff and other local and international volunteers that have helped it germinate in many places around the world.
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