January 2017, 35 next generation leaders gathered in Kyoto for the second Global Gathering of NELIS. This time, we organized a “Next Leaders’ Summit” for the first time, with the participation of staff from sponsoring corporations, people from local municipal administrations, students from across Japan and the general public.
Over the 1.5 days the Summit lasted, a total of 500 people participated (275 on day one, 225 on day two). We were, again, grateful to Ritsumeikan University, one of Japan’s leading private universities for hosting us.
After the Summit, all NELIS participants went to the beautiful La Collina Omihachiman, headquarters of the confectionery manufacturer, Taneya, whose CEO is co-founder of NELIS. Here we spent an intensive two days discussing how to make NELIS a local2global platform for sustainability. We used a collective design technique called Dragon Dreaming, which more than anything else helped us create a strong community out of the 35 people, most of whom got together for the first time. (Learn more about Dragon Dreaming here: www.dragondreaming.org)
The lovely and magical setting that La Collina provided also inspired participants to move into a space of exploration. The last day, we just could not finish and our dinner hosts threatened to cancel the dinner if we did not stop discussing and head for the restaurant…we just managed to get there.
In total a truly enchanted five days together with a bunch of great people, a lot of fun and common explorations, and some noisy Karaoke sessions stretching into the night. We are now looking to move forward, creating a global core team and starting to prototype local chapter activities in 5-10 countries across the world in the next year!
Thanks to all for coming – both to the 35 NELIS participants from 15 countries and the 500 strong audience joining our Next Leaders’ Summit!