CoCreAid Toolbox - Click here to view
Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the National Agency. Neither the European Union nor National Agency can be held responsible for them.
Home » Methods » Appreciative Inquiry

Appreciative Inquiry

Differences in vision
1 project manager & 2-5 project partners
1-2 hours
  • Digital whiteboard: Miro or Mural OR shared document (e.g., MS Teams)
  • Video conferencing: Zoom, Microsoft Teams etc.
Best Practices

Explanation of the method

  1. Prepare in advance the questions for each step: Discover, Dream, Create, and Realize. The questions should be based on the interview topic and fit the interviewee's personality.
    • Discover: Identifies the best of the interviewee's experiences, e.g.: What aspects of your environment are you most proud of?
    • Dreaming: Explores the ideal of the interviewee's environment without regard to time, money and other resources (vision), e.g.: How do you envision a "healthy environment" in the future?
    • Design: Concretize the interviewee*s vision, e.g.: What do you think should be done to achieve the ideal situation?
    • Realize: Links existing resources to interests and skills to make the vision a reality, e.g.: Assess the human and financial resources, your environment has, to make the dream a reality.
  1. Begin the conversation by introducing yourself to the interviewee. Start with the first stage - discovering - and ask the questions you have prepared. Be responsive to your partner's answers. Do not focus too much on the pre-formulated questions, instead adapt them to the interview situation. Then ask the questions for the other levels: Dreaming, Designing and Realizing.
  2. Based on the conversation with the interviewee, define a common vision.
  3. If you use the method in a workshop, first conduct it in groups of two, then share your vision in small groups (approx. 8 participants) and look for commonalities.
  4. Finally, compile the results in the large group. Try to define a common vision.


  • Very easy to use and does not require long preparation and training.
  • The method is well suited for interview structuring. The questions can be assigned well to the corresponding phases.
  • The interviewee feels addressed on a personal level by the type of questions. This allows a good basis of trust to be built up with the interview partner.
  • It is easier for the interviewee to answer personal questions than abstract ones.


  • Focusing exclusively on the positive can hide flaws, weaknesses, and risks.
  • Reserved people might reject this type of personal questions.

Advice from practice

  • Pay attention to the attitude of the other person. If the questions are too personal for the interviewee, become more distant. If the person responds to the questions, stay on a personal level.
  • If there is no information about the interviewee at the beginning, you should ask some general questions first and then personal questions.
  • Use scale values in the questions, e.g.: Where do you see your own health on the scale of 1-10? What needs to be done to bring your health status to a higher scale value?
  • Before the interview, you should test the questions with a colleague
Please note that the tools and methods were created as of August 2024 and all Miro Boards are editable.
© 2024 CoCreAid. All rights reserved.