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Co-Creating A More Diverse, Equitable and Inclusive World with Appreciative Inquiry is a Course

Co-Creating A More Diverse, Equitable and Inclusive World with Appreciative Inquiry

Ended Nov 18, 2020

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Full course description

Co-Creating A More Diverse, Equitable and Inclusive World with Appreciative Inquiry

Learn how to apply Appreciative Inquiry (AI) to create the social change of our time. This moment is opportune for AI principles and tools to help focus our work on diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) issues like #BlackLivesMatters, #MeToo, #Vote and rise to the call to action. So, come prepared to collaboratively inquire into what’s working and what’s possible to create the change we want to see in our workplaces, communities and family systems.

This course is designed to support you in taking DEI actions with AI principles, processes, and tools. We invite you to come with a DEI project (big or small, personal or professional) that will ensure your learning through immediate application. We will help you identify the individual and collective strengths within your initiative, develop generative questions to engage in listening and storytelling for positive possibilities, and ensure you have an action plan to co-create a more diverse, equitable and inclusive destiny.

We will share our expertise working in the fields of DEI and OD, including our theory of change and model published in an Inclusive Leadership book (September 2020, Routledge*). However, this course will not be a diversity, equity and inclusion training, an unconscious bias assessment, nor an anti-racist webinar. We will provide links to those resources, some which will form part of the pre-work, as there are incredible colleagues who have devoted their life and work to building DEI knowledge and skill set deep dives (for longer than the duration of this course permits).

This course is designed for all Appreciative Inquiry skill levels, whether you are new to AI or you’re an AI expert and just need to learn how to incorporate DEI into your living AI practice. As BIPOC women facilitators, AI has been central to our resilience in social change work and strengthened our call-in culture work in organizations.

Learning Outcomes:

As a result of participating in this 4-webinar series you will be able to:

  • Deepen your Appreciative Inquiry practice and tools
  • Actively contribute to a more diverse, equitable and inclusive world
  • Work on your own DEI project at work, home or in your community, using AI principles and tools
  • Establish a learning and accountability process and community for your AI DEI work
  • Create an Action Plan for your DEI project's destiny.

Webinar Info: 

  • Webinar #1 – Creating A Safe Container And Building A Community of Practice
    We will share a relational theory of change and appreciative leadership model applied to DEI. We will discuss and identify various diversity markers and explore the term intersectionality, coined by Kimberlé Crenshaw, with an additional AI lens, e.g. “how might the term serve as a meaningful metaphor for bringing out the best of women by exploring layers of strengths and wisdom developed by living with multiple forms of inequality and disadvantage” (Thriving Women, Thriving World. 2019, Taos*). We will build understanding and trust through paired work and group shared agreements. The discussions will be informed in part through DEI pre-readings and personal experiences of positive change.

  • Webinar #2 – Project Based Work
    We will review and integrate AI principles, tools, and or process into each person’s identified personal or professional DEI project. Small groups will learn and practice a strengths-based peer mentoring and coaching mastermind process to build, brainstorm and peer feedback on each project. The process involves amplifying and dreaming into what is possible.

  • Webinar #3 – Learning, Accountability and Inspiration
    We will review and explore how the projects, following asynchronous project building, can go further with deeper reflection and breakthroughs on limiting beliefs. We will craft and use generative questions to center living AI and DEI ethos and values in your professional and personal processes. What is emerging that informs our DEI future? How can this be practically applied? Where do you need further support? How can you share, learn and grow as an AI DEI community? What are the generative questions we need to consistently and persistently be asking to grow our DEI strengths-based practice?

  • Webinar #4 – AI Action Plans in Individual, Collective And Systemic DEI Initiatives
    We will conclude harvesting the projects review and exploration. We will reflect on and converge all our key insights and emerging wisdom in order to finalize project action plans. Further application of AI in DEI work will be discussed using a multilevel systems framework of inclusion.

To strengthen our community of practice, supportive materials, resources and recommended readings will be made available, as well as between-session sharing of practices, questions, and reflections (e.g. new ways of thinking).

Webinar Dates: 

  • October 28, Wednesday
  • November 4, Wednesday
  • November 11, Wednesday
  • November 18, Wednesday

Webinar Time:

8–10am PT US/ 11am – 1pm ET US / 5-7pm SA & CEST

Webinars are two hours. Webinars will not be recorded for asynchronous viewing due to the experiential nature of the session and the extensive time working and learning in small groups. Asynchronous learning will focus on DEI resources and Appreciative Inquiry resources from the AI commons. Additionally, the course is designed as project-based learning, so plan on initiatives thriving with 3 hours of asynchronous group work.

This Course is For: 

AI practitioners and AI students, consultants, coaches, collaborative group leaders, and anyone seeking to strengthen their Appreciative Inquiry practices and tools to increase their diversity, equity and inclusion work at work, home, or in their communities.


Tanya Cruz Teller

Tanya Cruz Teller

Tanya Cruz Teller (she/ella) is passionate about systems change and applies her 20+ years of experience in international, organizational, and community development to bring to life her principles of personal transformation, collaborative partnerships, and strengths-based solutions. She champions assets-based design in strategic planning, leadership development, & stakeholder engagement. Tanya’s career in the international OD and DEI arena includes her role as an expert panelist of the Global Diversity & Inclusion Benchmarks.Tanya enjoys engaging large AI and DEI audiences: in 2019 she co-keynoted at the World Appreciative Inquiry Conference in France on the theme of Thriving Women, Thriving World with Diana Whitney and Marlene Ogawa and presented at the Forum on Workplace Inclusion in the USA. Tanya was the MC and co-designer of the Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Futures Project conference in Princeton and the 2017 International OD Association opening plenary interactive visioning session in Cape Town. With the current Covid19 pandemic, Tanya has harnessed her many years of combining participatory convening, coaching and culture work with technology to engage and build inclusive processes for organizations and stakeholders online. Moving in-person conferences, workshops and programs to virtual platforms has proven her tech innovation skills timely. Tanya has a Master of Intercultural & International Management and a Bachelor of Arts: Psychology & Sociology.


Marlene Ogawa

Marlene Ogawa

Marlene Ogawa (she/her) specializes in designing and facilitating strategic innovative interventions internationally. Marlene has worked with business, NGO and government youth development practitioners in entrepreneurship, mentorship, education policy & design, information technology for development and volunteer initiatives. Over the years Marlene has supported cross and multi-sectoral collaborations, engaging and facilitating gatherings with diverse groups within government, business, civil society and communities. She is committed to and passionate about supporting global community initiatives that inform policy. She uses Appreciative Inquiry (AI) towards activating and building agency of groups, envisioning and actively changing their systems. Her work in building relational connectedness and collaborative leadership informs the approaches she uses to take participants from individual to collective systems work. She believes that enhancing peoples’ capacity leads to successful program delivery and sustainable change to positively impact systems and society. Marlene has a Bachelor in Education Honors Degree, and her formal technology schooling is the foundation to a passion for online learning and engagements that amplify collaboration. Marlene and Tanya have co-authored a book entitled: Thriving Women, Thriving World: An Invitation to Dialogue, Healing and Inspired Actions; and will soon have her work published in the book Inclusive Leadership: Transforming Diverse Lives, Organizations, and Societies.


Cruz Teller, T. (2020). Inspiring Inclusion Using the Appreciative Leadership Lotus Model. In B. M. Ferdman, J. Prime, R. Riggio (Eds.), Inclusive Leadership: Transforming Diverse Lives, Organizations, and Societies. New York: Routledge.

D. Whitney, J. Cocciolone, C. A. Miller, H. Moon, K. Britton, A. Leon De La Barra, A. Koh, T. Cruz Teller, M. Ogawa (2019). Thriving Women, Thriving World: An Invitation to Dialogue, Healing and Inspired Actions. Ohio: Taos Institute Publications.