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More-Than-Human Intervision

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Intervision is a structured process for receiving feedback and coaching from peers. This version adds an element in which silent or absent stake- holders (non-humans and other generations, for example) also contribute.


The structure of intervision ensures that everyone has a spacious amount of uninterrupted time to ask clarifying questions and to share their perspective. In its most basic form, 5-6 people are grouped in a table, where one of them introduces a dilemma. In a first round, the rest of the group asks clarifying questions; in a second round, they offer reflections or potential solutions. No interruptions or debates are allowed during the process. This method
is useful because it invites a diversity of perspectives, and it prevents louder voices from imposing on others. In the version we detail here, participants additionally perform the roles of “silent stakeholders”, such as more-than-human actors, or future generations. Including these perspectives adds an imaginative dimension and requires participants to empathetically consider the perceptions of those who cannot be present. Moreover, it can evoke creative or innovative solutions, as well as expanding the participants’ sphere of concern.


  1. Introduce and explain ground rules: highlight that this is a structured enquiry that requires active listening (see p. 7) and adherence to structure - it is not ‘a conversation’ or a brainstorm;
  2. Designate a person to be the ‘problem owner’, who will start with their enquiry, and another person to be the timekeeper. This can be done on a voluntary basis or at random;
  3. The problem owner explains their dilemma/project/ enquiry in three minutes. The rest of the circle should remain silent and practice active listening during this time;
  4. In the first round, each person has two minutes to ask simple clarifying questions. At least one question per person must come from a non-human perspective,
    from another time scale, or from a place of complete “beginner’s mind” as if they came from a different planet. Remind participants that questions should not be advice (framed as questions), but should stem from genuine curiosity or seeking to understand;
  5. In the second round each person offers reflections, resources, or personal experiences that relate to the enquiry (two minutes each);
  6. The problem owner listens, reflects back key insights or new perspectives, and expresses gratefulness;
  7. (optional) If time allows, free-form brainstorming conversation can follow;
  8. The process starts again with a new problem owner.

One thing to remember is to talk to the animals. If you do, they will talk back to you. But if you don't talk to the animals, they won't talk back to you, then you won't understand, and when you don't understand you will fear, and when you fear you will destroy the animals, and if you destroy the animals, you will destroy yourself.
Chief Dan George, Tsleil-Waututhx of the Coastal Salish people

Place on U
45 minutes - 3 hours
Materials Needed

A time-keeping device.

Decision Making
Human-Nature Connection
Design Thinking
Ecological Mindsets
Online Engagement
Tip and Experiences
  • Explicitly request that people include at least one question and one comment from a perspective other than their own (e.g. other species, entities, or generations)
  • People find that the exercise works best when they strictly follow the rules and the timing
  • If time is limited, participants can decide together beforehand whose enquiry is most relevant to everyone

Relevant References & Resources

The standard version of the intervision exercise was shared with us by Job van den Berg of Royal HaskoningDHV.

Intervision: Franzenburg (2009). Educational intervision: Theory and Practice.

Peer-to-Peer Coaching: Parker, Hall, & Kram (2008). Peer Coaching: A Relational Process for Accelerating Career Learning.

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