Another month of learning circles has come and gone while the summer season is coming to a close across our network. Near the end of each month a posting will be shared that summarizes what the Learning Circles have been doing together. The upcoming months may change based on the planning between Learning Circles. Exchange members are welcome to drop in on any Learning Circles if an upcoming topic is of interest. The Community Calendar is the best place to find Zoom links and dates (use your member login to access the calendar and meeting links). If you’d like to be added to a specific Learning Circles email roster and calendar, contact Veronica (email@example.com).
GSI Pictures and Videos!: On a recent trip to Michigan, I visited a weir step installation in Valley Woods Nature Preserve (City of Southfield) and a Rain Garden (Washtenaw County, Ann Arbor). At the bottom of this post are pictures and videos.
Asset Management: In August, each member presented 1-2 images of an asset in their portfolio (e.g., best, worst, before, after, most interesting). The group then discussed the various asset examples. In September, we will discuss hand off procedures (i.e., what worked, what did not work, contracts, security, hold backs, etc.).
Book Group: This month we wrapped up Connect > Innovate > Scale Up: How Networks Create Systems Change by Plastrik, Taylor, and Cleveland (2022). For September and October we will be reading Charleston: Race, Water, and the Coming Storm by Susan Crawford (2023). For September the discussions will cover through chapter 5. And in October, we will discuss chapter 6 to the end.
Innovations in Design: In August, we had a presentation on GSI Outlet Structure Weirs from Philadelphia. In October, there will be a presentation on inlets from Portland, Oregon.
Innovations in Funding & Financing: In August, we had a presentation from Baltimore about lessons learned in their funding context over the last two decades with a stormwater fee implementation. In September, Washington, DC will present on financing GI through their DC Green Bank.
Leadership: In August, we did a value-based activity during the meeting and discussed how values relate to leadership. Before the September meeting, members can pick one or more of these free tests to try out: (1) 16 Personalities, (2) Changemaker Quiz: What Kind of Changemaker Are You?, (3) HIGH5 Strengths Finder, or (4) VIA Character Strengths Survey. Each tests usually asks for an email so you can choose to use an email that you prefer for these online tests/tools. We will discuss what members learned about themselves and how the test results can support their approach to leadership.
New Member: This is the first year for a New Member Learning Circle! In July, the city of New Orelans walked us through their Interactive Guide To Green Infrastructure and Climate Resilient City Tool. In September, Toronto Canada will present their experience with regulations and the other cities on the call will discuss their approach to regulation.
Maximizing GSI Performance: In August, members brought 1-2 images to present how they measure infiltration. The group then discussed the various practices and methods that are used to measure infiltration. In September, we will discuss data that was collected by learning circle members that includes stormwater flow, water quality, infiltration, plant health, plus how data is analyzed and communicated.
Placing Equity at the Center: In August, we used these two questions to generate topics for the year: (1) what are you able to give to this learning circle? (e.g., resources, experience, presentation, topic discussion, knowledge, etc.) and (2) what would you like to receive from this learning circle? Members of this circle are interested in hearing how each city/municipality is centering equity in their community. In September, three cities will present 1-2 pics, slides or resources that show their equity work in practice, and this can include practices that are not working well (September cities: Boulder, CO; Grand Rapids, MI; and Washington, DC).
Planning & Resilience: In August, we gathered topics from the group to plan for the year, which included urban heat islands, flood resiliency, climate gentrification, and collaboration across/within departments related to the structures of organizations and how plans are implemented. Watch for these and other topics to be scheduled in the coming months. For September, we will discuss the Exchange’s Climate Resilience Resources Guide: Part 1 which will be used to schedule topics for the year related to gaps in the guide that need further development. The current interests and needs of members will also be incorporated.