Strategic Planning And Sustainability

Strategic Planning and Sustainability


Socially Constructing a New Corporate Purpose 


Imagine a sustainable world where humanity meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. Business provides the goods and services needed by consumers in a way beneficial to all stakeholders. The world’s vast wealth is equitably distributed to all people. We on Earth are working toward that future today. 


This is a story of AI applied to corporate strategic planning with an examination into the tacit economic assumptions of business.


The SOAR (Strengths, Opportunities, Anticipations, Results) framework for strategic inquiry and decision-making is discussed. SOAR is a compatible framework for an AI approach to strategic planning. Next, we review the dominant mental model of purpose underlying strategic planning. and an alternate perspective, flowing into a reflection of what could be.


The dominant construct in business is the theory that the purpose of a business is to maximise shareholder wealth. This theory will be contrasted with an alternate view—the “triple bottom line.” The purpose is not to choose either perspective as correct, distinct from the other, or even good; it is to inquire and appreciatively reflect into how these theories are socially constructed with an eye towards creating the change we desire.

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AI History and Timeline

by Jane Magruder Watkins and Bernard Mohr, from their book Appreciative Inquiry: Change at the Speed of Imagination
  Please note that this only goes to 2000. There are many more exciting developments and case studies in the past 13 years. In addition to the aicommons there are many reported in the Appreciative Inquiry Practitioner

To submit an Appreciative Inquiry milestone to this timeline, please email: for review. We would like to include major advances, shifts, and events.

Date Event

Cleveland Clinic Project is initiated.The birthplace and co-founding of AI happened in the doctoral program in Organizational Behavior at Case Western Reserve University in the collaboration between David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva in 1980. As a young 24 year old doctoral student David Cooperrider was involved doing a conventional diagnosis or an organizational analysis of “what’s wrong with the human side of the Organization?” In gathering his data, he becomes amazed by the level of positive cooperation, innovation and egalitarian governance he sees in the organization. Suresh Srivastva, Cooperrider’s advisor notices David’s excitement and suggests going further with the excitement-making it the focus. Having been influenced by earlier writings by Schweitzer on the idea of “reverence for life”, David obtains permission from the Clinic’s Chairman Dr. William Kiser to focus totally on a life-centric analysis of the factors contributing to the highly effective functioning of the Clinic when it was at its best. Everything else was ignored.

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