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My Research Blog

Since the first cohort meeting I have been quite busy.  Dr Catherine at the end of the session was showing us her avatar in Second Life for some research she was doing!  My first impression was…COOL!

One of the problems I had been thinking about before seeing Second Life is how can I scale executive coaching on the MBA program so that it might be realizable?  1:1 coaching is something that would be expensive and not particularly interesting to academic faculty and administrators, I had been thinking about if I could attempt to bring in both group and peer to peer coaching into the mix – then it hit me!  Why not try to use immersion within virtual worlds to get the same outcome!  I would then be able to bring students from different cultures in different regions in different time-zones to leadership development!  I think I have stumbled on something.

Since then, I have become a resident in Second Life, started reading on the phenomenon, checking out the virtual economy, bought a house, placed some furniture inside – and in the spirit of discovery even met a neighbouring fairy who through her prosthesis and bizzare annimations helped me lose my virtual world virginity – my god, I am only 5 days old!!  This was difficult explaining to the love of my life that it was part of my familiarisation and research :o)

During last weekend I participated in a business school brainstorming session inside SL but I was disappointed that it was a bit slow without voice!  UAE’s Telecom provider blocks VOIP, however, I have since found a way around it.  I do feel a little nervous that the learning curve is quite steep and might be a barrier to students adopting SL, however, there is still time to find ways to make it easier.   Alarming news this week was that SL owner Linden Lab is laying off 1/3 of its workforce http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/linden-lab-restructures-to-generate-efficiencies-and-support-investment-in-new-platforms-95982564.html

Some suggest that they need to push towards the social networking side more with a browser version, and I also heard a rumour that they will allow residents to use their own names going forward rather than the forced surname i.e. Daxter in Kiwicito Daxter was not my preferred choice!

This week I joined the International Coaching Federation and continue my work on the Results Coaching System, and gaining the required coaching experience (I need 100 hours) for full Associate Coaching Certification!  I see this as a pre-requisite to starting my research in the program.

So, i’m inside SL, I joined the ICF and continued to focus on this project – a good week!

As for the coming week I wand to read more on Group Coaching and Peer to Peer coaching models, get more experience inside SL, in world and out of world self identity, and continue to talk to people about this project!

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