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More on the Launch of a Major New Business as Mission Initiative

Guest Post by Josie Plummer and Mats Tunehag - Every movement that wants to continue to grow needs to have a habit of evaluation and innovation. The 2ndGlobal Think Tank on Business as Mission is designed to catalyze this kind of practice-focused development. The aim of this new Think Tank is to invigorate the global business as mission movement.

Between 2003 and 2004 a group of almost 100 leaders worked together under the auspices of The Lausanne Movement’s Forum for World Evangelization addressing the issue of Business as Mission. This process culminated in a week of meetings for 70 of the group and produced the Lausanne Occasional Paper on Business as Mission.[http://www.lausanne.org/en/documents/lops/875-lop-59.html] This ‘think tank’ type collaboration helped to bring shape to the growing global movement. It also led to personal and professional connections that have benefitted the movement overall.

Eight years on and we have much more experience to draw from, with a significant multiplication of business as mission enterprises. There is a felt-need to build on previous work and delve deeper into various applications and practices of business as mission.

God is at work through business people all around the world. We now have an opportunity to not only assess what is happening, but also to learn from one another and give ourselves a stronger foundation for the future.

The second ‘Business Mission Think Tank’ is being launched to take hold of this opportunity. We will connect together broadly and learn from a wide range of organizations, companies, networks and individuals. The Think Tank itself is simply the scaffolding, a framework if you like, for us to Listen, Learn, Connect, Share andRecommend together.

During the Think Tank we will be listening and learning from what is happening globally. We’ll be asking: What is working and why? How could we be more effective in the future?

The Think Tank will provide the opportunity for those involved to connect and will open up an unprecedented forum for discussion, collaboration and networking. We know that these encounters alone have the potential to catalyze many new initiatives and networks and even things which are beyond our thoughts and dreams.

In April 2013 the Business as Mission Think Tank will host a Global Congress on Business as Mission. This will be an essential event for networking, as well as a unique forum for presenting the findings, models, and materials from the Think Tank process.

In the year leading up to the Global Congress, groups will be collaborating virtually together and in face-to-face meetings. Some working groups will be focused on different issues and others will meet in geographical clusters. This will enable us to listen, learn and connect around very specific topics and contexts, resulting very practical outcomes. So far there are planned about a dozen regional and national groups working in different languages; as well as 16 issue related collaboration groups (see link below).

Each of these groups will then share the discoveries they are making about their region or issue. They will also be considering what it will take to break new ground for the future. For each issue and area, there will be strategic recommendations made and future action considered.

The Business as Mission Think Tank will be more than an academic exercise, although good research and analysis will be an essential part. We will be focused on action and practice; both as we look back and as we look forward. The resulting tools, materials and models will strengthen the business as mission movement as a whole and enable the next generation to go further, faster. In this sense it truly is a ‘Think and Do Tank’!

To find out more about the Global Think Tank on Business as Mission, please visit http://bamthinktank.org

Read more about Think Tank:

When it will take place and how it will work [http://bamthinktank.org/process/]

What topics and regions the Think Tank will cover [http://bamthinktank.org/process/]

How you can get involved [http://bamthinktank.org/get-involved/]

Expected outcomes [http://bamthinktank.org/outcomes/]

Further Resources:

Lausanne Occasional Paper (LOP) on Business as Mission [http://www.lausanne.org/en/documents/lops/875-lop-59.html]

Wheaton Declaration on Business as Integral Calling (with the LOP Business as Mission Manifesto) [http://www.matstunehag.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/BAIC-Wheaton-Declaration-BAM-Manifesto.pdf]

The Business as Mission Manifesto Revisited (BAM Think Tank blog) [http://bamthinktank.org/manifesto-revisited/]

History of the Business as Mission Think Tank (BAM Think Tank blog) [http://bamthinktank.org/historyblog/

Guest Blog by Mats Tunehag and Jo Plummer, Chairing Team of the 2nd Global Think Tank on Business as Mission. Mats is the Lausanne Senior Associate for Business as Mission. Jo curateswww.businessasmission.com and edits the Business as Mission e.zine. Mats and Jo formed the Convening Team for the first Business as Mission Think Tank at the Lausanne Forum, 2004 and co-edited the Lausanne Occasional Paper on Business as Mission.

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posted by Justin Forman | 4.19.2012 - 5:55 AM

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