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Rethinking Complexity

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Posts tagged with the category Systems Theory

Life is a journey. I have been keenly aware of that for a good portion of my life.  I guess I became aware of the power of the metaphor in my early twenties when I broke away from some cultural patterns that diverted me from what a friend called “the franchised life” — that more or less predictable and predefined path for a...
There is a long connection between Saybrook and systems conversations, which continues to this day.  The semi-annual conversations have been hosted by the International Federation for Systems Research (IFSR), and were historically known as the Fuschl Conversations (due to their location at Fuschl am See in Austria). Bela Banathy, the founder...
After going through a long destructive cycle in my life, where everything I counted on fell away, I have emerged into a generative period in which life energy has returned, and I am moving toward the world again. This period of disintegration changed everything for me. Keeping my seat as life’s fabric unraveled was hard, to say the least....
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...
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...
For anyone interested in 21st century organizational effectiveness, sustainability, integral leadership, conscious evolution and/or societal transformation who has not yet delved into Otto Scharmer’s concept of “presencing” -- the practice of “sensing” future possibilities and acting from the presence of what wants to...
Why does the intelligence of a group matter? What is group intelligence? We spend most of our lives engaged with people in a myriad of activities. Our livelihoods depend on our interaction with others.  For most of us living in modern societies, our success and quality of life are completely dependent on the various groups we belong to...
The notion of city is morphing, including how it is structured and how it functions as a center of commerce. As they have done down through the ages, cities today are continuing to evolve. They are developing new forms of society and methods of commerce by weaving people and digital technology into dynamic systems not tied to a particular locale....
In all the books and research papers on systems thinking that I have read, I don't think I have yet found the word courage as part of the language used. There is a lot written about systems thinking in terms of it's relevance and importance, it's theories and methodologies, but nothing about what it takes--emotionally. And I'm...
A recent article by Bruce Schneier, author of the book Liars and Outliers, is titled “The Battle for Power on the Internet.” As he introduces the problem: “We’re in the middle of an epic battle for power in cyberspace. On one side are the traditional, organized, institutional powers such as governments...
When I was diagnosed with Lyme disease recently, it explained a lot of things. (see www.ico-consulting.com/blog) It explained why it was so hard to push my business or anything forward; it explained the aches, pains, fatigue, and mind fog I have been experiencing for the last year. As I looked into the disease and its progression I ran into...
I travel a lot. I am now what the Transportation Safety Administration (TSA) refers to as a “Trusted Traveler.” One of the main benefits of being a trusted traveler is that when an airport has a designated TSA pre-check security line, I can pass through airport security without taking my shoes off. I would not have expected, say five...