Summary / report session 9 and 10 November

Looking back at the two days of Health Innovation Lab last week on 9th and 10th of November, I can say that it was full of energy, focus, insights and we made significant progress. But towards what exactly? I would like to call it codestination. We are all very motivated to go there, but we don”t exactly know how it looks like. After a warm welcome with live piano music played by Michiel Kahmann and an introduction by Hein Dijksterhuis, Erik Mandersloot introduced us to Dirk Oellibrandt who facilitated the Wednesday morning programme.

Dirk Oellibrandt (

He had some great slides and some inspiring quotes:

  • Try to feel, not to understand. Otherwise you only have a 20% chance.
  • We tend to look at details to understand how something works. But do we then really see how things work?
  • We are connecting internally <> externally by selective ”pass through”. But that is also selection on behalf of yourself and in some cases even at the expense of …..
  • Alchemie = chemistry of all
  • Let”s rediscover vitality. Our body is our temple!

But not only did he talk about his work, he also invited and enabled us to experience it! We did some exercises ‘clean our temple’ and discover tension in your body related to specific organs, types of stress and energy flow. More information can be found on his website (in Dutch) or in his book “Alchemie van Leiderschap” [Alchemy of Leadership], which I directly bought myself. I definitely going to introduce some of his exercises in my own routines.

Co-creating a vision

After lunch, Hein did a quick recap of TheoryU and we worked on co-creating a vision on different relevant areas. After a discussion in groups all of us individually worked on visualising / expressing / writing down our own view of the new system. How does the world in the next S-curve look like?

After sharing this plenary, we distilled six main topics that were important for defining Health 3.0:

  1. Organisation(structure)
  2. Innovation and entrepreneurship
  3. Self management
  4. Leadership
  5. Education & media
  6. Defining health

Building on these six topics we had some ‘world cafe’ style rounds where we moved along different themes and following-up each others notes and conversations. Finally the topic owner presented the outcomes to the group. At the same time this was an invitation to further deepen the subject during dinner.

Different groups were formed and each table worked on two assignments:

  • What is the core of the transition? FROM > TOWARDS
  • Express how this can look like (in a fun way)!

At the same time we gained valuable insights and had great fun! For example:

From transpiration to transparency

And a smooth transition from the old to the new system by playing with words:

Rigid Flexibele
Organising around organisations Organising arount patient(systems)
Organisation Organising
Organisation(structure) as a goal Organisation(structure) as means
Distrust Trust
Because we can Because we care
Complex Transparent
Perverse incentives Healthy incentives
Punish Reward
Not my business My business
In the shadows In the spotlight
Accountability Responsibility

We finished the evening by making a painting per theme.


Day 2: Thursday 10th of November

On the second day, some new people joined including Otto Scharmer. He shared his view on Society 3.0 and founding principles:

He used three figures to illustrate the results we collectively produce. At the moment, we are using 1,5 planet and at the same time 2,5 billion people live below the poverty line. Furthermore three times more people kill themselves than those that are killed by others.

Next, he talked us trough the visually updated U-process which now not only contained the U to visualise the process of ‘presencing’, but also contained an upper part that illustrated ‘absencing’. He used to describe it in his book already but I had not seen it visualised this way yet. For me it was interesting to realise that both curves have their own forces.

Otto Scharmer presenting TheoryU

In the U we have the ‘voice of judgement’, ‘voice of cynicism’ and ‘voice of fear’ that draw us towards absensing. At the same time, also in the upper process there are forces that pull towards the U-process of presencing. I do not remember the exact words Otto used, but I would like to summarise those forces as ‘crisis’, ‘become aware’ (or awakefulness as Arthur Zajonc referred to in our session in May this year), and ‘opportunity collisions that turn into guiding coalisions’.

Social presencing theatre

A method that matched very well with ‘cleaning your temple’ by Dirk was the artform “Social Presencing Theatre”. Earlier the second that, Erik took us through a similar experience on cleaning your temple as given by Dirk. Social Presencing Theatre is about embodyment. We each played a role of the healthcase system. The main instruction was:

“Attend to the social body, stay with it, and then move into what the field is asking for. Just DO it and BE it.”

Collectively we defined the relevant roles: Children, Patient with chronic disease, Family member, Citizen, General practitioner, Government, Health insurance company, Complementary care provider, Director of health organisation, Pharmaceutical industry and Well-being of the community.

We split up in two groups and started from the current situation and then let just time pass by.

It was amazing to see what happened! After some reflection, interestingly enough the same kind of insights and patterns emerged from the two groups that went through the Social Presencing Theatre separately. Some of the observations are:

  • Change / movement started in the periphery
  • Institutions only start changing when there is already significant movement
  • Motivation for change was either from compassion or that there was no other alternative

To some extent this matches the forces from the process of ‘absencing’ towards ‘presencing’ described earlier.



The rest of the day we spend on prototypes. We started of in a big circle and everyone who envisioned a prototype could step forward and share it with the group. In the end this merged into five groups that worked on each prototype separately. We worked on the concepts and next steps.

The five prototypes identified are:

  1. Happy temple (owner = Erik)
  2. Spark (owner = Egbert)
  3. Summer school (owner = Christina)
  4. Funnel (owner = Hein)
  5. Social medium (owner = Ton)

We will see more of these prototypes (and a lot of others) in our next Health Innovation Lab session on the 17th of February 2012.

I’d like to conclude this summary with some quotes that I have written down during the two days:

Otto Scharmer: “When engaging stakeholders, you need to do it on their terms.”

Jan S.: “The public is ahead of the system because they trust their instinct and not their tools and protocols.”

Hein D.: “A physician does not necessary need to be nice all the time and facilitate dialogue only. He/she can also be challenging.”

Ton R.: “The reason I am here is not because I see a financial problem in health that needs to be fixed. I’m here because I personally feel change is needed.”

Finally Otto Scharmer made some great and important closing commands. Earlier he mentioned that prototypes are prototypes if they are challenging the legitimacy of the system. Not just because they are nice. Furthermore he reminded us that even though up until now a great programme has been arranged, from now on the prototypes are the programme, we are the programme ourselves!

More pictures of the two days can be found on:

Best regards,

Lars Rengersen
(web, twitter)

4 Responses to Summary / report session 9 and 10 November

  1. hein November 16, 2011 at 2:04 pm #

    Nice impression of the days Lars! THX

  2. PeterH November 16, 2011 at 7:45 pm #

    Fruitful summary. Thanks, Lars!

  3. hein June 30, 2012 at 5:02 pm #

    From Otto his blog:
    Health Innovation Lab, Amsterdam. I reconnected with a group of Dutch health practitioners working to radically renew their existing health system. We used social presencing theater (including many elements of constellation work) to map the current system and how it could be transformed into a health system of the future. We conducted the same process in two parallel groups and then compared notes. These are the three main elements common to both sets of ideas for transformation: 1. The new does not start inside the system, but from the periphery, from the edges of the system. 2. It starts with citizens (payers), patients, and alternative health providers—but when physicians join the new constellation the axis of the system shifts and the bigger players (insurance companies, hospitals) also need to change. 3. It is essential to include the patients and citizens (the people who pay).


  1. Boekpresentatie Zelfsturing door Martijn Aslander - Lars Rengersen - July 3, 2013

    […] Doet me erg denken aan een van de VAN > NAAR transities in het Health Innovation Lab. […]

Leave a Reply

Powered by WordPress. Designed by WooThemes