Community Layer Methods

    Mapping conflicts with CLIPS

    Conflicts, problems and tensions form a natural part of the life of a group project and we only have a few social tools to manage them in a positive way. This method is one among others; from the CLIPS framework. It proposes to listen, collect and order the information that the conflict is contributing to. Allowing to observe it from different layers, feelings, needs and fears, searching a way to new options.

    The Way of Circle

    A group needs practices for sharing.This is one that is widely used within the ecovillage movement and therefore a recommendation for each community group to experiment with - and find the form that match the group the best.

    The Traffic Light

    Any group needs to set its boundaries in a transparent manner for members, both new and old, to be able to navigate more smoothly within the community. What is needed from each member? What can be made possible? What is expected? The Traffic Light exercise zones out these aspects to set clear boundaries.

    Cycle of Hope

    Many of the challenges that a group project entails for each person are expressed in the individual layer. This method proposes a way for a positive understanding of these challenges, turning them into a way of reconnection with the community.

    Peer Coaching with CLIPS

    The term 'Collegial Coaching' is widely used in social enterprises to target issues of importance to one person for which this person seeks advice from their peers. The method has been adapted in a way that while coaching, the CLIPS model. is brought in as a reference. It could be typically applied at the end of an introduction to the CLIPS-model,and can be used with any audience that is familiar with the CLIPS model.

    CLIPS Onion

    This method aims at supporting groups to develop a meta-perspective about their group from a CLIPS perspective. A typical example of the use of this method is the first day of a community meeting, dedicated to gain a deeper understanding of the issues of the community and at the same time understanding the importance of all 5 CLIPS layers.

    Emotional Wheel

    The Emotional Wheel is rooted in the culture of Native Americans and is a practical development of the talking stick (or pipe). It creates an intimate, special atmosphere for people to express their feelings, expectations, desires, and makes visible the magic energy of the group.

    Permaculture & CLIPS Orientation Table

    A method to help groups orient their actions and understand their best strengths and weaknesses using Permaculture Principles in relation to the CLIPS model. Although it cuts across all layers, it is especially related to Community and Structure. The Social Permaculture & CLIPS Method is formed by parts 1 & 2, so the Orientation Table (Part 1) should be consulted and applied before the Assessment tool (Part 1).

    The Colour Game

    A method to get to know yourself in your c ommunity. To know more of yourself in a group, to know your group; differences and skills. to know which areas to improve - where to give special attention, to bring awareness to differences in a community group and why it is necessary to have different skills/styles represented. And give value to them all.

    Community Cards

    A set of cards about the mindset needed for creating community. The Community Cards help to introduce the attitude that is important for creating a community that respects and empower the individuals. It instigates people to reflect their own attitude and to speak about it. This usually starts a deep exchange that is very community building. They can connect their attitude and values to these cards.


    SWOT is used in CLIPS as a diagnostic method, to assess the state of a project - and realize new potentials. It is a known tool, used in both companies and organisations, when laying out strategies.

    GEN Ecovillage Playing Cards

    These cards are produced by the Global Ecovillage Network (GEN Education), here contextualized to CLIPS. They can be used to map motivations for group members, to map skills and learning needs of group members and to search for a common intention for a group. A workshop of 1,5 hours.