Communities of Learning
A New Story of Education For a New Century

Proposal Summary
& Next Steps

Our Current General Social Transformation

Our Current Education System

Education's Future

FAQ's on This Future of Education

Evaluating Social Systems





Site Contents 

Lisa Lindberg

References and Illustration / Photo Credits

References -- people whose ideas I drew for this proposal - - systems thinkers all.

Buckminster Fuller

2.  Appolinaire

Milton Friedman, Nobel Laureate in Economics, and co-author of Free to Choose (1976). Paraphrased conclusion to his 1998/11/16 address to the Education Conference of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.  Broadcast on C-SPAN Radio the following week.

4. Alvin Toffler, The Third Wave  (1980)


5. On imaginal frameworks, systems thinking, paradigms, worldviews :

Walt Whitman, 19th century American poet. Quote on the "invisible structures that secretly govern everything.“

Jean Piaget, 20th-Century Swiss developmental psychologist.  Based on his conceptualization that optimum cognitive development requires balancing these two response dynamics to new stimuli :
(a) accommodation : manipulating ones internal schema (existing cognitive structures) so new stimuli can fit
(b) assimilation
:  manipulating the stimuli to make it fit into existing schema 

Thomas Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions  (1962).  Classic, seminal work on the understanding of how paradigms are constructed, what they are for, and how they change. A physicist who declares the indebtedness of his ideas to many social scientists, including Jean Piaget (see p. vii. of 1970 edition) .

Kenneth Boulding,The Image: Knowledge and Life in Society

Ervin Lazlo, A Systems View of the World (1972).  Especially his last chapters on the implications of systems thinking for social organizations.

 Institute of Cultural Affairs (ICA) - - ICA-USA, ICA-World, ICA-International.

 A private, non-profit organization concerned with the human factor in world development.

Jean Houston <>

A Mythic Life: Learning to Live Our Greater Story  (1996).

This link is to her own site.

This link is to


A rollicking story of her life - -  the amazing arrays of people she has known and projects she has been involved in, told within the mythic framework she has built for herself to hold it all together.

Ursula LeGuin, The Dispossessed (1974).
A novel.

The link on her name is to her own site.

The link on the title is to an on-line study guide created by Paul Brians, Department of English, Washington State University, Pullman


This link is to

For ideas on decentralized governance, the connecting together of the parts of a civilization, and in general on the individual's role in creating an ideal society. I first read this book in the Summer of 1980 on a peaceful, lovely island in Lake Michigan in northern Wisconsin, where I had gone to learn to weave. I have since have read it numerous times more ; Ursula's lovely ideas in this work have put it on my permanent list of personal favorites.

Her message in this book
: being a part of a revolutionary society means that one must constantly BE the revolution - - because there is never a permanent guarantee of intellectual freedom. ("Hold fast to the one noble thing" : freedom.) Therefore, one must always be on the alert for any threats of custom ever becoming used to maintain and extend power, or else everyone's hard work will devolve into a yet-one-more-valiant-but-faded-attempt at making our world a more authentic, joyful, good place to be alive.


Daniel Quinn, Ishmael  (1992)



For the quote, “Every story is the working out of a premise.” 

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, founder of the Transcendental Meditation Program and TM-Sidhi Program.. On the "Fundamentals of Progress": Stability, Adaptability, Integration, Purification, and Growth. I first heard of this system in the mid 1970's, and have found it to be very helpful in many applications. Also many ideas on the relationship of the Individual and Society.

Alexander and Kathia Laszlo of Syntony Quest are applying the systems perspective to the area of learning (see their story). See their Keynote Presentation, "Systems Thinking, Learning Communities, and Educational Change" of the Virtual Conference on Integrative Learning - - "Learning Millennium 99." See also their chapter, "Learning to Become: Creating Evolutionary Learning Community Through Evolutionary Systems Design" in the book Creating Learning Communities by The Coalition for Self-Learning (2000). In that online book's consultants section, the Laszlos describe their work as follows: "Learning to think anew requires learning to learn anew. Current educational reform does not address this challenge. Our work facilitates the design of Evolutionary Learning Communities where people can engage in lifelong learning and meaningfully contribute to the creation of a sustainable future." In this chapter, they use the systems approach to gaint insights into the dynamics of social systems. Alexander and Kathia's ideas in their article "Learning to Become" significantly helped me define the social dynamics characteristic of my proposed "communities of learning." I adapted their ideas in the section of this website entitled Social Systems: Evaluating Evolutionary Sustainability of 4 Group Types.


Notes 6, 7, & 8: On Multi-Centered Networks


Duncan Work, <>, my colleague and life partner since 1970.  Designer of Net Deva, a collaborative, web-based software tool for building extended human networks based on mutual value, trust, and respect. Net Deva and the Internet are both tools to enable the personal connections of the future - - flattening power pyramids into free, open, voluntary, peer-to-peer exchange.

Duncan introduced me to the concepts of multi-centered networks and of voluntarily-affiliated, self-governing communities.

7. Children's Environments Project, of the Architecture and Urban Planning Research Center, at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's School of Architecture and Urban Planning. A multi-award-winning team of architects and social scientists applying both theoretical and empirical research on human development to designing environments for children and families. We used the pattern-language approach as our overall modus operendi. Among the awards this work received were two years in a row in the category of Applied Research in Progressive Architecture Magazine's annual design competition, 1979 and 1980.

Little did I know when I first read in the UW-M paper about this interesting-sounding project, that this Architecture School had one of the world's hotbeds of environment-behavior studies. I started out as the project's typist, where the people on this project soon very graciously offered me one of the project's Graduate Research Assistantship, so I got to move up to research and writing. In addition, I began giving slide presentations on our work to community groups both locally and in other states. As a member of this Architecture School, I was welcomed to attend all class lectures, exhibitions, critiques of student work, as well as special presentations. In addition, the professors invited me to take any graduate and undergraduate course that interested me. I had free rein and assistance in using the extensive facilities in the library of books and images, the photo lab, the wood shop, and the metal shop. My experience as a member of this community of people and their facilities has played a large role in my envisioning what would go on in a Community Learning Center.


Alexander, Ishikawa, Silverstein, Jacobson, Fiksdahl-King, & Angel, Center for Environmental Structure, Berkeley, California

A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction

(The link is to on-line summaries of each pattern.)

This link is to

In 1978, my colleagues in the Children's Environments Project introduced me to this team's work, and ever since, I continue to glean delicious ideas from them.

The vision and strategy in my Communities of Learning proposal use many of this team's ideas. See the (numbered) design patterns listed in the underneath bar :

Pattern #'s: #8 Mosaic of Subcultures. #10 Magic of the City. #14 Identifiable Neighborhood. #18 Network of Learning.  #30 Activity Nodes. #41 Work Community. #43 University as a Marketplace. #57 Children in the City. #81 Small Services Without Red Tape.  #83 Masters and Apprentices #84 Teen-Age Society. #85 Shopfront Schools. #86 Children's Home. #88 Street Café.   #147 Communal Eating. #148 Small Work Groups. #157 Home Workshop

  For the concept of "chunking" : Kevin Kelly, author of Fast, Cheap, and Out of Control (1994),  Out of Control : The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems, and the Economic World (1996), and  New Rules for the New Economy: 10 Radical Strategies for a Connected World (1998). All on the transformative dynamics at work in all aspects of our emerging era.

Quote in middle of Part 3, under “The American Education System:  Lagging Behind,” : from New Rules, p. 118.


11.   Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. See note 5.

12. Dee Hock, coiner of the term "chaordic." Author of Birth of the Chaordic Age (1999). Founder (in 1970) and currently CEO Emeritus of VISA International, an example of a chaordic organization : a cooperative structure of autonomous parts in competition with each other for business.  Founder (in 1997) and Coordinating Director of the Chaordic Alliance, a non-profit organization established to facilitate this way of people working together.   Terra Civitas.

13. Jean Liedloff, The Continuum Concept : In Search of Happiness Lost (1975).

See Piaget - - in Note 5

14. Jessica Lipnack and Jeffrey Stamps of NetAge, The Age of the Network : Organizing Principles for the 21st Century (1994), p. 129.   Since the 1970’s these folks have pioneered the work of identifying and studying the significance and power of the emerging social structure of the human network. 

15. O. Earle Miller, The New Einsteinian Culture and Communication (1967. 76 pages) In 1971, insightful friend Jim Scofield read this book then gave it to me to read, saying he thought I would like it. I read it, was instantly enamored of Miller's ideas, and continue to remain so.

16. Philip Evans and Thomas Wurster, Blown to Bits (2000). Examples of how in the business world, the new economics of information is causing the command-and-control authoritarian pyramid model to collapse, and to bring about the new, complex-system model characterized by the fluid turmoil of peer-to-peer exchange.

17.   See Laszlo, Note 5


18.  Paul Saffo, quoted from.  In Regina Fazio Maruca "The New Economy Gets Real : Voices." Fast Company, September 2000, p. 128. Saffo is a technology forecaster and director of the Institute for the Future.

19. Jessica Lipnack and Jeffrey Stamps of NetAge, The Networking Book : People Connecting with People (1982, 1986), p. 2 & 13.

20. John Naisbitt, Megatrends : Ten New Directions Transforming Our Lives (1982) p. 211 & 229.

21. R. Buckminster Fuller, 1982 (in Introduction to 1986 edition), Jessica Lipnack and Jeffrey Stamps of NetAge, The Networking Book: People Connecting with People (1982, 1986), pp. ix-x.

22.  Roger and Birute  The Soul at Work (2000). Delightful, insightful book about how commerce is nothing other that an activity among real-live people, and which therefore is guided by all the dynamics of human relationships.

23. Gifford and Elizabeth Pinchot, The End of Bureaucracy and the Rise of the Intelligent Organization -- "freedom and community"

24. Ursula LeGuin, note

25.   Nathan Myhrvold, the term “democratization of power.”  In Regina Fazio Maruca "The New Economy Gets Real : Voices." Fast Company, September 2000, p. 126. Myhrvold is former chief technology officer at Microsoft; cofounder of Intellectual Ventures LLC, a private partnership exploring entrepreneurial pursuits in technology.     


26.  See Piaget in Note 5

27. Ballard, inventor of the “Jason” deep-sea exploration device, and founder of the ”Jason Project.”  Segment on Morning Edition, National Public Radio, broadcast 2001/03/05.


28.  Benjamin Zander and Rosamond,     Transformation………….Segment of The Dianne Rheme Show, 2001-03-28.


29.  Behavior of adolescent elephants, Time Magazine





Illustration Credits

Photographs and graphics by Lisa Lindberg, unless otherwise credited.

In Proposal Summary

Parts 1 - 5 : Illustration descriptions and credits yet to come.

Proposal Summary & Next Steps 

Our Current General Social Transformation

Our Current Education

Education's Future

FAQ's on This Future

Evaluating Social Systems




Site Contents