Latest Update from Langley, BC

Kavana Tree's picture

The 4 of us on the core team (Sue, Daniel, Dave & myself) recently spent a few days meeting in person for the first time since fall.  When we do that we like to send out an update so others of you can hear what's happening behind the scenes.   While a bunch of our time gets spent dealing with the nitty-gritty of keeping the website and other functions flowing smoothly, we also enjoyed an evening conversation on complexity science and how it relates to pattern language, and did the personal reconnecting that is so important to keeping our project alive when we operate at a distance.  Here is some recent news.

Deck Reprint
There are less than 100 decks remaining from our first print run of 2500, so i've just finished managing a reprint of 2000 more copies.  The new decks are substantially the same as the previous ones, however there are a few changes you might like to know about:

  • improved packaging for better visibility;
  • 9 category cards have been added, with new category descriptions that are much more polished;
  • small, unobtrusive numbers now appear in the lower right-hand corner, to aid in re-alphabetizing and/or sorting out multiple decks after use;
  • the 9 "Keystone" cards (one representative card from each category) are now distinguished by a thin black line around the category icon leaf;
  • activities section of the booklet has been revised based on experience since publication;
  • new stock has 30% post-consumer recycled content as compared with 10% last time, and the booklet in new edition is 100% post-consumer.

We are currently working on revising the free downloadable version of the deck to keep pace with these changes.  The new free version will have 4 cards per page instead of 2, thus greatly reducing waste in printing, and will be a smaller and more reasonable file size.

New Pricing
Related to the reprint, pricing on printed decks is shifting.  If you want to buy decks at current prices, do it before stock runs out.  Current prices are $25 for 1-9 decks and $20 for 10+, while the new pricing will be $35 for 1-9 decks and $25 for 10+. 

Calgary Engagement
We are very excited how staff at the City of Calgary (in Alberta, Canada) have used Group Works as part of their cultural change initiative.  During the "dream" phase of their Appreciative Inquiry, thousands of citizens and staff participated in selecting the values they wanted city government to operate by, through the lens of this pattern language.  If you are curious, there is a 15-minute video presentation from their process posted at; the parts referring to Group Works are at 3:35 and 7:25.  We had a video conference call with their team shortly before the work session, and we are fired up to learn more about what they did and how.  Our team is planning a major field trip there in September, likely to include creation of a short, inspiring video that can help explain what they did and how it might be relevant for other large organizations.

Fall Workshop in Eugene
Our next public offering will take place in Eugene, Oregon this fall.  Mark your calendar for Saturday, November 15 if you are interested.

Group Works Videos
Did you know there is a GPLP YouTube channel?  So far it mainly has videos from method-mapping events, plus the fun conversation linking Group Works to Art of Hosting by Dave Pollard & Chris Corrigan.  We hope to add more in the future.  We'd love to include any short videos you might feel inspired to create that show you and your friends or clients using the cards!  So next time you are using the deck, consider getting out a gadget to record, and let us know.  Like the method-mapping explanations, these can be casual uploads rather than polished or edited pieces.  See

All Over the World
Decks have shipped to 21 countries, including places in Asia, Africa, and South America.  Dave has posted a map if you are curious.  According to Google, the top 10 countries people view our website from are:  US, Canada, Australia, United Kingdom, India, Germany, Netherlands, South Africa, France, and New Zealand.  After English, the next most popular languages of our website viewers are German, French, and Chinese.  A Spanish edition has been created by folks in Spain, and there is interest from speakers of other languages too.  If you are interested in this, see the new page Sue created to bring information on all translations together in one spot:

Story Collection
Thanks to Dave's leadership, we've made good progress creating a template to collect stories of people's experiences with the patterns and the deck.  We're working on getting the new form posted to our site; in the meantime you can always offer stories under the guise of Reviews: We are big on sharing stories, believing that is a primary vehicle for making meaning and sharing what matters!

Curriculum Development
Early work is underway on creating a curriculum to teach the pattern language through a series of modules.  It's a sizable undertaking and we don't expect it to be completed for a while yet, but it's a significant piece for the future.

As always, we welcome participation in any and all of these activities or whatever else strikes your fancy.  If you have a ken to connect more with the project or get involved in some way, please drop us a line.

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