Iñigo Retolaza Eguren

Arantzazu, Spain
Phone: +34 693427461
Skype: iretolaza
WhatsApp: +34 693427461

A time I experienced Collective Flow/ Team Flow was last year I worked with a Social Coop in Madrid (15 people). What initially was supposed to be an easy exercise of organizational strategic readjustment it became a conflict transformation process along with the design of a new organizational model. Among other activities, we had a 3-day retreat in a rural area to work on their issues. After a whole heavy morning of dealing with their internal conflicts, we started working in different groups designing organizational prototypes and making them move around and giving feedback to each other. We got into a flow wherein the foundation of the new organizational model was laid down and people were fully engaged in working together keeping the focus on the model, dealing constructively with their differences and bringing the best out of each prototype. We shifted from an atmosphere of conflict and mistrust to another one wherein cooperation and dialogue gained momentum creating a better atmosphere for collaborative work.


In Memorialab (citizen encounters for social construction of memory around Basque conflict), collective flow happens all the time after people share their testimonies of violence and suffering. Although people come with very different experiences (15-20 participants), there is a moment after all testimonies are heard where people stay in deep silence and breath all those experiences. This silence is a manifestation of collective flow for me. People all understand they have been victims of same conflict and after initial shock (“I am not the only one who suffered here, they did too”) all participants, irrespective of their ideology or conflict experience, come closer, listen to each other and to some extent feel acknowledged by the other side in the conflict. A sort of peaceful atmosphere takes over, people having transcended their own suffering and embracing the whole.

In many occasions when I facilitate public conversations (100-150 people approximately using Open Space or World Café) people start flowing and connecting after initial confusion due to the flowy nature of the methods used.

My passionate work... 

The part of my work that most engages me as a consultant (both in Spain and abroad) has to do with group facilitation. Mainly groups which are diverse (multi-stakeholder) and having some degree of conflict (i.e. multi-stakeholder policy dialogue). In Basque Country I also work with groups who suffered (the consequences of) violence due to Basque conflict (Memorialab initiative, restorative and social healing approach).


I also do lots of work with a wide range of social organizations and public institutions: diversity management, conflict transformation, dialogue, organizational learning, training, strategic analysis and planning, etc.

What attracted me to joining the Flowing Tree Research Team is my friendship with Laura Cronk. My desire to have an action-learning community around topics which are meaningful to my work.

The methods and tools that I most frequently use are: Art, Art of Hosting, Dialogue, Dynamic Facilitation, Focusing, Leadership Embodiment,  Organizational Constellations, Process Work, Social Presencing Theater, Systemmic Coaching and Theory U. 

Education: BSc Agri. Engineering (Universidad Valladolid, Spain), Diploma on Local Development and Integrated Management (Universidad NUR, Bolivia), MA on Participation, Power and Social Change (Institute of Development Studies, University of Sussex, UK), Process Work Certificate Program (Process Work Institute, USA, on-going)