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“You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.”- Buckminster Fuller

VITAE (Latin for 'living'), is an important new Community Investment Co-Op (CIC) initiative, started in Eastern Ontario, to provide an innovative support systems for rural to urban economic and business development, able to bridge the gap between local investors and local ventures in need of financing. 

‘CICs are a cost-effective, community-owned and controlled impact fund.”The Canadian CED (Community Economic Development) Network. 

In essence, they enable people to become partners in locally-driven economic development, which leads to stronger and more sustainable economies.’ Because as local investors invest in economic activity, employment, goods and services with the expectation of a return on investment (ROI), the local enterprise receives debt/equity financing as they build the co-op interest/ROI in quality of life, community resiliency, relationships, and connections, as shown in CED’s diagram below. This ultimately is a win-win-win 

Co-ops, of course, are far from a new idea. What is recent, however, is the growth of impact investments available to provide capital for addressing social and/or environmental issues for the greater good, including return on investments. 

THE VITAE CO-OP CONCEPT: 

The Strategic Service Objectives
1. Financial: Ensure financial sustainability; diversified growth revenue streams;
2. Customer: Best value for the cost, and partnerships to provide long-term solutions;
3. Internal: Innovation; Customer Service, Operational Excellence: and Regulations
4. Learning: Align with OECD’s Learning Framework 2030 for well-being
5. Development: Optimize asset/liability management expertise, infrastructure and resources

The Strategic Vision: A Well Built Generative Environment For All

The Strategic Goals:

1. Establish a Community Investment Coop in Eastern Ontario in 2020
2. Model the SMARTEST Learning and Living Labs by 2025. 
3. Share Lessons Learned on Initiatives by 2030 
4. Lead the regenerative movement by 2040  

The Strategic Service Objectives

1. Financial: Ensure financial sustainability; diversified growth revenue streams;
2. Customer: Best value for the cost, and partnerships to provide long-term solutions;
3. Internal: Innovation; Customer Service, Operational Excellence: and Regulations
4. Learning: Align with OECD’s Learning Framework 2030 for well-being
5. Development: Optimize asset/liability management expertise, infrastructure and resources

The Current Strategic Activities

Currently, activities and services are focused on establishing a community investment co-op to facilitate and the real estate discovery. This consists of conceptualizing; investment due diligence; and establishing the business on a sound foundation. This includes among many other important tasks a feasibility analysis to establish the business in the Alfred Ontario College Campus, and explore other locations in and around Eastern Ontario for the start-up real estate portfolio and programs.  

Organizational Structure                   

For focus; to keep costs low; and ensure organizational flexibility as well as sustainable organic growth, the VITAE Community Investment Cooperative will havea network organizational structure, for multi-stakeholders.

Strategic Business Outcomes: 

(Re)Generative Outcomes & Impact Design: The enterprise will capture community-wide and partner-wide outcome measures in order to predict service needs, forge new partnerships, generate new resources, and create new high-impact solutions.“In regenerative cultures, people and companies create the conditions for more life, more diversity, more resilience and antifragility. It is the antidote to extractive industries. Implementing regenerative practices in all areas of human activity is not only the next economic boom and a source of unbridaled potentiality but also our greatest potential scenario for healing our planet from our extractive history.” Bloom Network

Strategic Business Fit: 

Based on countless initiatives, we know that while focusing is critical at the tactical, operational and maintenance levels, the more the co-op services can be diversified in a related way, the greater the window to convert strategic fits into a competitive advantage. This will result in more balanced economies of scope, flow, and scale that fits each member. 

For more information, visit the MIT Climate Colab, Building Workspace Contest Proposal at https://www.climatecolab.org/contests/2017/buildings-workspace/c/proposal/1334682

“Today, the chance to meet soaring demand in a sustainable way by transforming how companies and societies prosper represents nothing less than the biggest business opportunity in one hundred years. The combination of information technology, nanoscale materials, and biotech with traditional industrial technology can unleash a step-change in resource productivity and generate enormous new profit pools. However, capturing these business opportunities—and avoiding the disruption they bring—will require an entirely new approach to management.”  Stefan Heck, Matt Rogers and Paul Carroll (Contributor), McKinsey and Company; Resource Revolution: How to Capture the Biggest Opportunity in a Century; New Harvest 2014  

To succeed with new management approaches, however, requires community thinking, as well as a  communication strategy. Because as much as an extensive network matters, Our network already spans continents. This is key to establish simple and sustainable reiterative processes; organize events, and keep stakeholders motivated.

URGENCY LEVEL APPROACH 


CRITICALPerformance Support
Pull CommunicationsAt a time of extreme disruption, due to COVID 19; climate, policy, and other major changes, sharing accurate and reliable critical information is an important public service we can all participate in, and one VITAE can provide.  
Pull communication, however, requires stakeholders/communication receiver to be proactive to retrieve the information, and share it. This is why it is cost-efficient, and accessible to all. To that effect, we can and should check our DRIVERS section of the web site.     

HIGHMass Distribution
Push Communications / BroadcastingSimilar to pull communications, push communications or broadcasting is also essential. It can be, however, more challenging in terms of effectiveness and efficiency to provide communicate important or time-sensitive information or make announcements, as it targets key stakeholders or particular groups.  
Course mass distribution is just one example of products/services we can assist in. This is why along with  Automated Learning Corporation we now provide online courses for learners to discover, develop, and deliver better expertise, infrastructure, and resources change the lens, or bridge critical gaps.See our SERVICES for readily available courses.  
ELEVATEDPartnershipsConsultationBoth communication and consultation are key to improve safety, well-being environment, and health. Consultation, however, is more limited/limiting as it hinges on the scope, time, costs and risks that either exist, or is perceived about having a two-way engagement, where one asks questions and the other answers. The key often is in the quality or the relevancy of the qustions.  
INTEGRATIVEEducationParticipationIntegrative education, “cuts across subject-matter lines, bringing together various aspects of a curriculum into meaningful association to focus upon broad areas of study." (Betty Jean Eklund Shoemaker 1989)It reflects the interdependent real world, and involves the learner's body, thoughts, feelings, senses, and intuition in learning experiences that unify knowledge and "provide a greater understanding than that which could be obtained by examining the parts separately". This is key at a time when creative leadership is essential, for a fast-changing world. You can read more on the importance ofintegrative education here , but as you will see, it hinges heavily on participation or two-way engagement within limited roles and responsibilities. 
GUARDEDInnovationPartnership Two-way engagement joint learning, decision making and actionsInnovation in any industry at any time is important, especially to start or grow a business, regardless the sector. However, it requires real partnership with two-way engagement in joint learning, decision-maing, and actions to effectively and efficiently manage the risks and rewards. Because Innovation is a complex process with many different stages and inherent risks (operational, commercial, financial, etc.). Moreover, good scalable innovation require time and money investments before any positive effects become visible. This is why while innovation may actually be urgently required, they should be guarded to prevent unintended consequences.