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MAxT an example of effective collaboration

  • Courtesy Photo—



For the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Thursday, July 05, 2018 1:1PM

Having worked as a strategic management consultant around the world during my professional career it is now a delight to be retired in Peterborough . During my career I learned the importance of positive collaboration to create sustainability. This meant businesses finding new strategies by exploring radical new ideas with diverse participants to create social, environmental, and economic value. Now I find my local community leading the way in positive, collaboration to create innovative sustainability. MAxT Makerspace’s creation is a great example of effective collaboration between town, nonprofit and business groups.

Peterborough town managers and committees have created many positive collaborations. The Economic Development Authority and master plan committees worked on 10-year and three-year plans for improving economic vitality. This included holding several community wide events to identify financial needs and possible actions. One outcome of the process was the idea of creating a local makerspace organization to attract and retain postgraduates into the community.

A non-profit called Monadnock Center for History and Culture and the Monadnock Ledger-Transcript hold community conversation events every two months. Based on the town idea they held a Community Conversation event with a large community attendance to initiate the creation of a makerspace.

Based on the conversation a team of volunteers formed to initiate the non-profit makerspace called MAxT.

During MAxTs first two years of operation, 55 members were attracted to the space and a collaboration with another non-profit in Keene called Hannah Grimes created the opportunity to support new business creation through MAxT. Town committee discussions with town business leaders also identified the need to support funding for appropriate new businesses in the region. A town-based committee named Our Town Capital was formed and now reviews and invests in some of the new businesses supported by MAxT.

This is just one example of the positive collaboration in the community.

Peterborough Sustainability: Positive collaboration is creating very effective and innovative social, environmental and economic value in the town and Monadnock region. All generations living in the area can connect through businesses, committees and events to learn and implement valuable innovations creating positive personal lives. The society also benefits from very low personal risks due to the innovative and effective management provided by the town, businesses, hospital and non-profits. Peterborough and the region are not driven by political infighting or wealth inequality.

The natural and architectural beauty in the region creates attractive, positive environmental value. In addition the collaboration by the town to install solar, hydro, and renewal sources of power also create a positive environment. Peterborough is the leading New Hampshire town in the generation of environmentally effective power. In addition several new enterprises and non-profits in the region are developing new capabilities to produce local food and energy creating near term improvements to the environment.

Many of the collaborations are creating economic value by attracting new workers, jobs and businesses into the Town. Interns learn the value of local working and are often supported in college education. Members of the MAxT makerspace learn and assess new technology to support their personal work interests. MAxT and Our Town Capital have supported several new businesses and new plans are underway including for affordable green homes and organic farms. Empty offices are being filled, new workers hired and new businesses created. Employment has increased 29 percent in 10 years and unemployment is only 2.3 percent. More workers are needed and continued community collaboration will help.

Positive collaboration and sustainability are being achieved in Peterborough and the Monadnock Region. This can support worldwide innovation to enhance sustainability.