Simon Bell



I am fascinated by relationships and wholeness. My  whole career has been concerned with integrating life  practice and reflection on practice: as a international consultant, Director of a research institute, teacher and researcher. The Open University allows me to integrate life and work for example by being a teleworker. I'm only interested in ideas that have practical application.  Wherever possible I aim to do things, research them and teach about them. So for example I aim for a sustainable life with my own wind turbine and solar which I monitor and write about.  


My signature is methodologies. I have developed and applied a number of methodologies including: Multiview for information systems, Triple Task for group work and, most importantly Imagine. This last approach has been applied all over the world and in all kinds of contexts from internet 2 to community conflict; from London Olympic Legacy to the future of the UK Health Service. I have used Imagine in a collection of sustainable coastal community projects in Malta, Lebanon, Cyprus, Slovenia, Algeria and Spain.

Cultural Value

Over 2013 and 2014 I am applying Imagine in an AHRC funded project exploring the changing cultural value of the BBC World Service and the British Council

Sustainable Communities

Sustainable Community is an ideas which fires me up. It captures the sum of much of my experience so far with groups, methodologies and change and acts as a nexus for what I do now and will do in the future.  I recently was a Primary Investigator in an large EC Framework 7 project (POINT) into policy use of indicators. This research involved working with a range of communities and exploring their use of indicators in the creation of policy. Prior to that I worked with the UK's Homes and Communities Agency into a set of Virtual learning resources for professional and lay communities to develop their sustainable vision.

Information Systems Design

Facilitating the accommodation of multiperspectives is a theme that also pervades my work on Information Systems Design where I have  co-authored a multi-perspective methodology called Multiview. My contribution was to develop the approach for use for non-specialist communities in developing countries.

Right now I am Module Team Chair of Environmental Management 2 - this is a third level module. I was also an author of the second level companion module: Environmental Management 1.

I was Team Chair of the third level systems course: Managing Complexity: a systems approach. I have also production chaired the post graduate modules: The Information Systems Toolkit, and Management Information Systems.

Following a period working on secondment from the OU I worked on a virtual learning continuing professional development module on sustainable community.

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