Appreciative Inquiry Summit


An Appreciative Inquiry (AI) Summit is a methodology co-created by David L. Cooperrider consisting of a large group strategic planning, designing and implementation meeting that brings a whole system of internal and external stakeholders together in a concentrated way to work on a task of strategic significance. At its heart, AI is about the search for the best in people, their organizations, and the strengths-filled, opportunity-rich world around them. 

the Cycle of an appreciative inquiry Summit

While the principles represent the underlying philosophy of AI work, the cycle offers generative yet practical, process model for approaching change at all levels within a system, from one-on-one coaching, to team building, to system-wide change.




"the best of what is"

The discovery phase is based on a dialogue, as a way of finding ‘what works’. It rediscovers and remembers the organization or community’s successes, strengths and periods of excellence.




"what could be"

The dream phase uses past achievements and successes identified in the discovery phase to imagine new possibilities and envisage a preferred future. It allows people to identify their dreams for a community or organization; having discovered ‘what is best’. 




"what should be"

The design phase brings together the stories from discovery with the imagination and creativity from dream. We call it bringing the ‘best of what is’ together with ‘what might be’, to create ‘what should be—the ideal’.




"what will be"

The final phase is destiny and how it’s embedded into groups, communities and organizations. In early appreciative inquiry development, it was called ‘delivery’, based on more traditional organizational development practice.