Saturday, November 28, 2009

Progressives gather to Reboot Alberta.

What do you get when you put 100 progressive thought leaders in a room?

Actually, what you get is a number of absolutely incredible discussions about what Alberta should look like and how we should get there.

I have relished in the opportunity that Twitter has given me to discuss issues of importance to Alberta with a diverse group of people. I am now so happy with the opportunity that Reboot Alberta has given me to meet those people (amongst many others) and have a deeper more interactive discussion.

At Friday night's reception, I kept asking the question, "what hopes or expectations do you have for this event?"

The general answer was "not much" or "a good conversation." Good answers.

The spirit of the event has been about getting together without pretenses or defined outcomes and find out where our commonalities lie. We came into the room as progressives, but we all came with diverse definitions of what that meant.

The morning featured a nice breakfast and an exercise in determining the 15 themes that would make up the discussions for the morning. I found myself in conversations about engaging youth, open and honest government and bridging the urban/rural divide.

The discussions were meaningful, respectful and diverse. In essence what democracy should be about. The focus was on creating the best Alberta that was possible. In my mind, the goal now is to create a governance system that achieves what Reboot has. A system that enables meaningful, respectful and diverse dialogue on making Alberta the best place it could be for all citizens. We have great potential and politics too often get in the way.

The challenge, as the afternoon discussions revealed, is to come up with a vision for the change we wish to pursue and a strategy to obtain it within the contexts of the system that currently exists.

There is much work still to be done.

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