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4619 N. Ravenswood Ave., Ste 305
Chicago, IL 60640


We are a multidisciplinary innovation studio working with diverse partners to understand sustainability challenges and identify holistic, resilient solutions, and we are committed to training the next generation of leaders.


Insights, inspiration and opportunities to create a more vibrant and resilient future.

INSIGHT: The Nature of My Ambition?

Peter Nicholson

A Midsummer's Symphony of Lights
I run at dusk. Heat wilts me, so I head out on the cusp of the day's end, following the rail-to-trail path through town, and then across miles of farmland toward the next small rural Ohio outpost. My heart pounds as the sun evaporates, beauty and exertion intermingling. I exercise without a soundtrack; overcoming the tedious silence is part of the discipline. Mind games. As darkness intensifies, I wonder how much farther I should go, where halfway should be today? Sometimes night creates a cool, meditative space, drawing me further into it. Other times, it invokes a subtle, yet palpable anxiety: turn around. Aspiration and limitation converge and compete in this liminal state. A bat dodges low overhead. On the way back, millions of fireflies reach peak illumination. They create a pre-light speed, a Star Wars-like tunnel in the trees and bushes that buffer the narrow scar that receives my increasingly weary steps. Did I go too far? In some places, the margins thicken and the path blends with the night. I run blind. There are no revelations, profound insights, or sudden feelings of ease. Rather, I uncomfortably merge with the asphalt and branch, my heavy breathing keeping me afloat. No longer me and it, I search in vain, with a heavy, fading gait, for some ancient bio-luminescent spark to add to the glowing chorus surrounding me before leaving the path, and slowing to a walk within sight of home.