SecondMusing in Mexico


Last week, we were graciously invited to spend a week at an historic hacienda outside of Merida, Mexico.  Our thought partners, La Vaca Independiente, a social enterprise focused on systemic change, knew that working amidst ancient relics would inspire us to pause, contemplate our work, and recharge as we planned ahead. As we discussed systems innovation, human-centered design, and emerging technologies, we reaffirmed our commitment to need-finding amongst global communities and the promise of virtual reality as a transformative tool for social impact and sustainability storytelling. Conducting sessions in the presence of a Mayan pyramid, centuries of wisdom seeped into our minds as we discussed holistic solutions, including integrating the arts, when approaching the challenges we face around education, health, environment, and sustainability.

Fundamental to this site, was the incorporation of stunning architecture and beautiful gardens weaving together human history and a natural ecosystem. “From the minute we arrived,” said Todd Khozein of SecondMuse, “We felt like we were in our home as the love and care that everyone infused made this place feel sacred.” Watch this short vignette about Hacienda Itzincab Cámara and its history.

Davar Ardalan

About Davar Ardalan

Davar Ardalan is the Director of Storytelling and Engagement at SecondMuse. As a veteran journalist and former social media strategist at NPR News in Washington D.C., Ardalan lead dozens of real-time engagement campaigns to great impact. Most recently she was the Senior Producer and Social Media Strategist for NPR’s Identity and Culture Unit, traveling across the country producing live events and moderating Twitter chats on some of the most critical issues of the day including community and policing, voting rights, education, and immigration. She has cultivated thought leaders across platforms, generating millions of impressions across the globe via Twitter and an even more impressive level of response domestically. Ardalan has also worked as a Supervising Producer for Morning Edition where she helped shape the daily newsmagazine, and was responsible for decisions that required elaborate coordination such as broadcasts from Baghdad, Kabul and New Orleans. Through the years, her public radio productions have been recognized with two NABJ Awards and a Gracie Award from the American Women in Radio and Television. She began her radio career as a reporter in 1991 at KUNM in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Ardalan is the mother of four and lives outside Annapolis, Maryland. In May 2014, she was the recipient of an Ellis Island Medal of Honor, for individual achievement and for promoting cultural unity.

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