IPA reflection

16th January 2014

Key learning

  • permaculture design processes and tools
  • project design and management
  • mapping and plan drawings
  • working with BPT as an established and successful permaculture organisation
  • working collaboratively
  • presentation

What went well?

  • the IPA process developed by understanding and skills a great deal through the constructive feedback on each design
  • feedback on the use of ethics, principles and design process was valuable, in particular gaining insight into how to use various design tools at different stages of the design process
  • the feedback on maps was great as I had little experience in drawing maps and plans, I also began to understand the value of maps and plans in the design process
  • an outside perspective on community living was very helpful

What was challenging?

  • designs within designs: deciding at which level to design a project was challenging and I found myself often designing at the pattern level and then designing again each design project arising out of the pattern, ie from the community life survey, I identified general principles of how I wished to engage in community life and points of intervention, which gave rise to many smaller designs, ie the Saturday cafe and three different review processes
  • spending a lot of time on the computer in revising designs, rather than implementing them!

What do I want to do differently for the next five projects?

  • go deeper into details on land-based designs at all stages of the design process, ie with soil tests, sun mapping, observations on site, how to improve soil in the long-term, detailed yearly planting plans
  • smaller design projects to allow for more depth
  • more efficiently going through the design process
  • concisely documenting the process and projects with great visuals
  • spending more time in developing projects on the ground
  • spending more time in our garden, the forest garden, walking and practising