The Value of Failure

Gisela Méndez, General Director of the Planning Institute of the Municipality of Colima, Mexico, discusses the benefits of knowledge sharing at the Sustainable Cities : PLUS Network Biennial Conference.

(Spanish below)


About sustainablecitiesnetwork

Sustainable Cities International is a registered not-for-profit organization based in Vancouver, Canada. Operating since 1993, the mission of Sustainable Cities is to catalyze action on urban sustainability with cities around the world. We work by connecting and mobilizing people through the process of co-creating. We facilitate a thriving, international network of cities that act as urban laboratories: adopting, testing and improving on innovations. Ideas are accelerated through sharing of experience and cities are making transformational change a reality
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3 Responses to The Value of Failure

  1. Guilherme Fragomeni says:

    Muy bien Gisela! Queremos los errores!
    Its very easy to find good practices around the web and in manuals from many global organizations. A relatively small and close network like ours brings a much richer possibility to have longer discussions in an informal environment…and thats where you really learn!
    Thanks for the inspirational speeches! Beijos!

    • gismendez says:

      Muito obrigada!! 😉
      A little after-story. One day after our energizing trip to Ottawa-Montreal, I was invited and leave home to go to the Latin-American meeting on Best Practices, in order to present Colima’s case.
      I was amazed by how different we think we approach the same questions. We all search for better cities and better life for us, our families and our communities.
      Our network, formed mostly by public officials and brilliant consultants that work mostly for governments, discussing our failures but also our strategies to get over that and succeed!
      On the other hand, the network of best practitioners were formed mostly by civic organizations, discussing how they can also go against all odds in order to supply what the government hasn’t! (the most inspirational ones).
      One thing in common: community engagement is the way!
      So that got me thinking: what are we doing wrong in order to think that we work alone? I felt a terrible bias between “we (government)” and “they (organized civil society)”. Aren’t we fighting for the same things?
      We talk about making a human city and we don’t behave as humans, labelling ourselves. Does this makes any sense?

      By the way! I didn’t know that Colima was in Brazil!! We are so much closer than we imagine! 🙂 Hope that works for World Cup!

  2. Bongumusa says:

    Really, our most failure is pushing away those who seem to be critical of our short-comings rather that taking advantage of their energy, that inner drive to contribute to community upliftment. Skills, knowledge, ability to organise society and other important resources within civil society should really be harnessed and directed to the common goal of building livable cities.

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