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Rethinking Complexity

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Posts tagged with the category Change

My most recent professional experiences have brought me back to think about evolving education. In my previous blog I shared a little bit of the journey that has taken me to this moment. By evolving education I mean both integrating learning into life as well as designing new learing systems.  Both are necessary. The first is about supporting...
Most, if not all, know the popular saying “Think globally and act locally.”  Originally this saying was a cry for sustainable living; that is, to care for the earth’s environment by consciously examining and changing how one lives and works. Not only does this saying now refer to much more, when applying it to global...
Education has always been close to my heart. It is my joy for learning that has kept me connected to the educational field, even though I had some painful learning experiences in my formal education. As a mother, I see my teen daughter questioning schooling practices that are not relevant, meaningful or enjoyable. When I was a little girl, I knew...
Following some encounters I had early last month leading up to the 104th anniversary of the International Women’s Day I am reminded of lessons learned here at Saybrook University on helping human systems. I participated in an event with a group of about 100 Christian women from one of the parishes in Southwestern Kenya at a church located...
I have been teaching systems thinking as an approach to deal with complexity for many years. Complexity has become a catch word, something that is recognized as a part of modern life, something that should not be ignored or simplified. We have too many examples of reductionist approaches that tried to solve a problem through a technological (quick...
Many of today’s complexity-related challenges require leaders to create more space in the workplace for people to share their difficulties and concerns, and explore new ways of addressing them. Whenever we are facing the unknown, doing something we haven’t done before, and unsure how to approach a new challenge or what the outcome...
I recently attended a meeting at the Almaden Research Lab near San Jose, CA.  The T-Summit was jointly sponsored by Michigan State University's Collegiate Employment Research Institute and IBM's Global University Programs.  As described in the announcement about the meeting: Employers are placing...
Over the last five decades, while business contexts were evolving from national to international to transnational and now to global, workplace environments were shifting from “control-oriented” hierarchies to interactive teams to social networking ecologies. Such shifts in perspectives, accompanied by innovations in digital-based...
Recently I had the opportunity to visit and experience the work being done as part of the Las Vegas  Downtown Project.  It is a $350M project with a mission to “ transform Las Vegas into the most community-focused large city in the world”.   They are working on that mission actively through the purchase of real...
I just returned from another trip to Japan, this time including a first visit to Osaka.  The first few days were spent in Tokyo, at the seventh workshop and symposium about service systems science, hosted by Prof. Kyoichi (Jim) Kijima from the Tokyo Institute of Technology.  The purpose of the event was “to describe visions of the...
In 2010 IBM published a study identifying complexity as the primary challenge for leaders.  Intuitively, we can relate to this study’s premise.  However, we may have different understandings of complexity ranging from mere complication to total chaos. Complexity can be defined as a state of intricacy, complication, variety and...
Over time, people across the world have self-organized themselves in a variety of ways. There are tribes, villages, towns and cities. Then there are city-states, nation-states and even empires. All have cultures, even subcultures that make them distinctive and give them an identity. They have borders that create separation and avenues of commerce...