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Sustainability: behavior change
progression of individual’s interactions with natural environment, human economy, etc. that shifts towards a neutral or positive contribution in the transformation to sustainable society (i.e. zero emissions lifestyle, constructive activsm, etc.).
the school of nothing is investigating the realm of nothing.
As an applied research project it develops and implements artistic and scientific interventions in the public space and open performances | workshops for people being interested into exploring the qualities conntected to nothing, e.g. nothingness, silence, emptiness, darkness, pause, serenity, Lassenskraft, waiting, withdrawing, contemplation, doing nothing, leisure
Worked on the development and early implementation of the Wellbeing of Future Generations law in Wales, UK. Senior Fellow at IASS from 2019 to 2020 where I shared insights gained from the experience of Wales. Colleagues in the IASS were extremely generous in sharing their time, expertise, and experience, which made it possible to explore sustainability through a range of prisms and perspectives. The Institute provides a unique space for collaboration. The nexus of natural sciences, social science, artistic endeavour, and the implementation of public policy inspires us to rise to the challenges and seize the opportunities facing us.
Andreas Mues works for the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) where he has been involved particularly in the studies on nature awareness (Naturbewusstsein) and the connection between mindfulness and nature protection.
“Auf diesem Blog dreht sich alles um die Verbindung von Spiritualität und nachhaltiger Entwicklung, um das Innen Wachsen und Außen Wirken. Welchen Beitrag kann die eigene Innenschau angesichts der zahlreichen globalen Herausforderungen leisten? Was brauchen wir, um wieder im Einklang mit der Natur zu leben und zu wirtschaften? Der Blog dient als Inspiration für alle Menschen, die das Leben lieben und denen die Zukunft unsere Welt am Herzen liegt. Mein Ziel ist nichts Geringeres, als die Leser*innen wieder mit ihrer Liebe zu unserem Planeten zu verbinden. Denn geht diese Liebe In Aktion (LIA 😉 ), so wird der Grundstein für eine zukunftsfähige Entwicklung gelegt.”
Das aus dem Buddhismus stammende Konzept der Achtsamkeit bettet sich nach und nach in die verschiedenen Lebensbereiche der westlichen Kultur ein. Was bedeutet dieser Kontextwechsel in einer von Konsum geprägten Gesellschaft? Welche Potenziale der Meditation an sich und des “mindfulness-movements” im Allgemeinen lassen sich hinsichtlich einer ökologisch-nachhaltigen Zukunft festmachen? Und vor allem: welche Gefahren birgt dieser Prozess? In der Bachelorarbeit “Die harte Landung der Achtsamkeit in der westlichen Konsumkultur” werden die Wechselwirkungen, welche zwischen den westlichen Adaptionen der Achtsamkeit und den Entwicklungen der Konsumgesellschaft bestehen, analysiert und kritisch beleuchtet. Die Verfasserin nimmt dabei abwechselnd eine anthropologische, philosophische und soziologische Betrachtungsweise ein.
Founder and Director of the Swiss-based foundation Education 4 Peace (E4P)
Created in 2002, the Foundation works internationally to promote the incorporation of skills in self-awareness, deep listening, and mastery of emotions into the educational curriculum of youth, including sports education. His earlier experiences first as a volunteer and then as director of an organization that operates hotlines for emotional support and suicide prevention and his successful career as a business consultant specializing in communication, marketing and organizational development have greatly contributed to the work of E4P. From 2001-2010, Mark was chairman of the International Federation of Telephone Emergency Services (IFOTES), with 600 centers in 28 countries. He initiated many activities to promote listening skills, as well as the first international congress on the theme of Emotional Health in 2007, co-sponsored by the World Health Organization (WHO). He has led the E4P’s groundbreaking work with international and national football federations to officially introduce self-awareness, teach listening skills and empathetic communication that pave the way for resilience and relational consciousness. He is the co-author of Master of your Emotions and Football, a Path to Self-Awareness.
Sustainability – Self – Silence
Silence Spaces is a collective of four people, which resulted out of sustainable higher education at the Eberswalde University for sustainable development. During the M.Sc. program we realised, that the inner dimension is under represented when sustainability efforts come into action. Hence, we created a space for the self to empower sustainable behavior in silence and finally helping to transform mindsets and societies. Silence Spaces are physical as well as symbolic spaces. They are free of cyber activities, talking, reading, writing or any kind of input as long as there is not a a conceptualized learning journey taking place. In Silence we learn how to drop into ourselves, observe, reflect, relax – deep learning can take place and this environment can help us to deal more sustainable with ourselves instead of exploiting our own resources. Finally, Silence Spaces want to empower each single individual to invite inner change in order to initiate and shape sustainable outer change – and Silence is the container where this processes can origin from. Silence allows to LISTEN to our inner needs, become more empathic and caring towards oneself as well as the surroundings.
What is sustainability? Often, environmental aspects are in the foreground, while the social dimension is neglected. A transformation towards a more sustainable society, though, needs to consider the social and individual dimension as inner change causes outer change – and vice versa. We see the inner dimension underrepresented in public spheres.
We raise the awareness, that we need more than a technological understanding of sustainability, which cares primarily about the ecological consequences of our actions. We call for a shift in consciousness, too, which influences our thinking and action.
To think critically and acting according to it, is asked from each one of us. We believe that these capacities can be found in Silence. It offers a container for subjective transformation processes – by pausing consciously and taking part at learning journeys on (self)transformation. Deep inner change towards sustainability can’t happen in times of overwhelming stress and acceleration.
Silence Spaces in public places allow a transformation on both levels with the emphasis on internal spaces. The potential to become a part of the solution of grievances lies in every one of us and is able to unfold here. Silence Spaces are physical as well as symbolic spaces. They are free of cyber activities, talking, eating or any kind of input as long as there is not a learning journey taking place. In Silence we can drop into ourselves, observe, relax and reflect. We can gather strength and become observers when we exploit ourselves or witness exploitation of others and the environment. We need an economic and political shift and therefore promote spaces where critical thinking can happen, which is needed to bring along system change. The time for cool headed action is now.
Wir verfolgen das Ziel, jungen Menschen in einer seelischen Krisensituation einen tragfähigen Wohn- und Arbeitsort in Form einer therapeutischen Wohngemeinschaft (TWG) zu verschaffen.Wir wollen einen Ort schaffen, an dem neben einem Wohnkonzept weitere Therapie, Prozesse der Nachreifung und gesunde Begegnungen möglich sind. Zielsetzung ist, den jungen Menschen durch das Erleben von sinnvoller Tätigkeit, die pädagogisch und psychotherapeutisch begleitet wird, eine Lebensplattform zu bieten, die gleichzeitig therapeutisch und entwicklungsfördernd ist.Eingebettet in ein haltgebendes, strukturschaffendes pädagogisches Jugendwohnen sollen mit Hilfe der intensiven therapeutischen Arbeit die jungen Menschen lernen, die Anforderungen des Alltags zunehmend selbstständig und selbstsicher zu bewältigen.
Since I have been a teenager, the environment and the way we deal with it, has been important to me. After school I was searching for studies, where I could combine environmental and social sciences. Well, I did not find it then, therefore I started together with a group of other students and young assistant professor to develop a new study program, called environmental system sciences. It is based on systems and integrated thinking and the idea to study one major subject (in my case economics) plus courses in natural sciences, systems theory, interdisciplinary thinking. Now it is a big program with 1000s of alumni and students (see here: https://umweltsystemwissenschaften.uni-graz.at/). After having obtained my Masters in 1997, I started to work as junior resarchersin research institutes such as the Wuppertal Institute, later at the University of Graz, where I was also teaching. I came across the scientific community of Ecological Economics, where I found my scientific home base. I got active in this society and started a PhD at the Universities of Graz and Leeds, which I finished in 2004. Since then I have been working as project leader in sustainability projects at different research institutes (more than 10 years at SERI in Vienna, which I co-founded, the UFZ in Leipzig, or the Vienna University of Economics). My research developed continually towards transformation research, quality of life/good life. There inner processes became more and more important. It was with my dear colleague Felix Rauschmayer that we started to work on links between needs, wellbeing, sustainability, the good life or capabilities. Through him I met Thomas from IASS and other people working on inner change. My projects are mainly transdisciplinary, because I am convinced, the challenges, we face, cannot be solved by science alone. I have started to take courses in moderation and facilitation, such as Circle, Dialogue, Art of Hosting, Dynamic facilitation etc. to be able to integrated all relevant actors in an appropriate way. Personally I would say I am on a journey bringing me more and more to myself and to the “größeres ganze”. I am on a spiritual path, practice meditation for many years, and try to live a life that is more and more sustainable, outwards and inwards.
Rachel has worked for over 20 years in social and environmental change as Director of a social enterprise, trainer, consultant and communications expert. In recent years she has worked in Ceredigion locally on community engagement and domestic energy efficiency. She has developed and delivered consultancy and training interventions for Welsh Government, WWF, Ceredigion County Council, Ogilvy Mather amongst others. Her work and research interests are supporting effective and human centred change through developing the psychological capacity of policy and other change makers and leaders. This includes utilising the capacity and understanding of mindfulness and behavioural insights to support effective decision making and project/policy design.
Konsequenter, weil die Anfrage eines Kernkraftwerksbetreibers unsere ›Wasserlinie offensichtlich und die Arbeit mit einem Öko-Pionier uns glücklich gemacht hat. Seit dem gönnen wir uns den Luxus, nur mit Kunden zu arbeiten, die uns am Herzen liegen und die an ›nachhaltigen Transformationsprozessen Interesse haben.
Wir wollen nichts weniger als unsere Berufung leben und gemeinsam mit ausgewählten Kunden ein klein wenig die ›Welt retten. Denn die Welt ist unsere Freundin…
MANEMO ist ein kunterbunter Haufen mit ausgeprägten Persönlichkeiten und vielfältigen Kompetenzen: wir treten den Beweis an, dass eine ›ökosoziale Marktwirtschaft jetzt und hier schon gelebt werden kann.
For years there was this deep sense of insecurity inside…or rather a wrongness about my existence that I did not know how to describe. I tried to live the values of the culture, follow the roadmap to success imparted to me through community, family and school. I was determined to be an “acceptable” kind of woman, even though I was obviously not. So I got educated, went into business, wore suits, thought rationally, competed against others and was successful for a time, but then my life fell apart.
I had been looking outside— in what I did, what I had, who I knew—for who I was, but it didn’t work. The best way to say it was the outside was not connected to the inside so I was living someone else’s idea of me (who I wonder?) I was not free and did not know how to live what I valued. I had no idea if there was a more natural way for me to be.
It became clear that the only way I could understand was to explore from the inside…to renounce what the culture valued and reconnect to my inner knowing. I now know this unknown inner dimension of myself as the feminine…. so I started with a simple question that guided my journey. What is the feminine?
I ask some remarkable people who embody these traits to find out how they would describe the feminine, to get a sense of how being connected to this part of themselves informs their lives and how it is lived in balance with their masculine aspect.
This is my personal inquiry, but I have a sense that this film is also about our collective journey towards wholeness because I am simply a microcosm of the macrocosm…and so are you.
Yoga and Backpacking Trips in Yosemite. Yosemite journeys for mind, body and spirit. Our retreats and backpack trips harness the transformational power of nature to inspire deep connection with your own inner wisdom.
Welcome to the website of SpiralEcology, a cultural transformation collaborative. We invite you to explore ‘deep ecology’, walking, and other workshops, where we invite you to connect more deeply with self, world, and Earth.
Go Wild Institute weaves science, myth and spirit to awaken our Nature and find wonder and balance within the great web of life. We rekindle an innate sense of belonging to the natural world. We specialize in fun experiential programs that delve into Earth Wisdom, Ethnobotany and Deep Ecology for people of all ages and walks of life.
Mosaic is a network of artists, activists, community builders, healers, and spiritual teachers working in innovative ways to develop cross-cultural alliances, mentoring relationships, and forms of community healing.
Amid the rattling of cultural institutions and radical changes in nature, it may be time to turn again to valuable traditional methods of cultural healing and individual mentoring. Shaping new forms from separate, estranged, or even broken pieces is a dynamic remedy for the personal isolation and spiritual dislocation that increasingly characterize modern life. The creative act of finding and fitting together the divergent yet necessary elements of a diverse culture can produce “moments of wholeness” in times of great uncertainty.
Honoring all of creation as Original Blessing, Creation Spirituality integrates the wisdom of Eastern and Western spirituality and global indigenous cultures with the emerging scientific understanding of the universe and the passion of creativity. It is both a tradition and a movement, celebrated by mystics and agents of social change from every age and culture.
Integral human development includes all dimensions in the life of each person, including the physical, intellectual, pyschological, ethical, and spiritual dimensions. In particular, the spiritual development of each and every human person is crucial for sustainable development. It is recognized that spiritual growth is impossible for people living in misery. However, the extreme poverty of many is mostly a consequence of the spiritual underdevelopment of people living in abundance. Therefore, the mission of Mother Pelican encompasses the full range of social and ecological justice issues, but is specifically focused on how they relate to spirituality and the practices of various religious traditions. Gender inequalities that emerge from religious patriarchy are explored as major obstacles to integral human development, solidarity, and sustainability.
ICH oder WIR? Unsere Fähigkeit zur Empathie spielt auf dem Weg zu einem anderen, humaneren Kapitalismus eine Schlüsselrolle. Der Homo oeconomicus, eingespannt in die Pole von Selbstsucht und Mitleid, kann an sich arbeiten und sein Mitgefühl gezielt trainieren – zum Wohle der Gemeinschaft und zum Wohle der Gesamtwirtschaft. HEED, das von der Karl Schlecht Stiftung geförderte Institute for Human Engineering & Empathic Design der Hochschule Pforzheim, nimmt diese Thematik auf: In dem öffentlichen Forum „Das Wir-Potenzial. Innovation durch Empathie“ am 12. und 13. April 2018 beleuchten führende Vertreter aus Wissenschaft, Wirtschaft und Kultur das Thema Empathie facettenreich.
Matthias Bolz, Psychologe und Labor Manager für soziale Neurowissenschaft am Max-Planck-Institut für Kognitions- und Neurowissenschaften in Leipzig
Robert Eikmeyer, Wissenschaftlicher Mitarbeiter für Kunst- und Designtheorie an der Hochschule Pforzheim
Uwe Jean Heuser, Leiter des Wirtschaftsressorts der ZEIT und Autor von “Humanics”
Wolfgang Henseler, Professor für intermediales Design an der Hochschule Pforzheim und Managing Creative Director von SENSORY-MINDS
Robert Besta, Schauspieler, verkörpert in Serien wie Tatort und Polizeiruf 110 häufig das Böse
Eva Köppen, Beraterin für ko-kreative und mensch-zentrierte Innovationsprozesse und Autorin von “Empathy by Design”
Fritz Breithaupt, Professor an der Indiana University Bloomington und Autor von “Kulturen der Empathie” und “Die dunklen Seiten der Empathie”
Das Forum findet in der Aula der Fakultät für Gestaltung, Holzgartenstraße 36, 75175 Pforzheim statt. Für externe Gäste fällt eine Tagungsgebühr in Höhe von 250,- € an. Studierende und Angehörige von Hochschulen sind frei. Um Anmeldung bis 2. April 2018 wird gebeten. Details zum Programm und zur Anmeldung unter HEED.
“Education is the kindling of a flame, not the filling of a vessel.” This quote from Plutarch is as true today as it was two thousand years ago. Still, the misconception of education as a vessel-filling activity remains. In this column, I outline an idea that could reshape our universities while also prototyping new ways of addressing urgent societal challenges. The kindling of the flame that Plutarch talked about has never been more relevant than now.
Let’s start with 2017
Last week my column focused on 2017:
The year 2017 mirrored the epochal year 1917 by putting a new challenge in front of us: the challenge of vertical development.
By “vertical development” I mean the capacity to deal with disruptive change, which requires us to let go of the past and to let come the future, to shift our awareness from one state to another. In the language of tech: vertical development is about suspending your habit of installing yet another app and instead upgrading your entire operating system.
From that perspective we can interpret the current global surge of terrorism, fundamentalism, xenophobia, Trumpism, and autocracy as expressions of the same underlying phenomenon: the missing capacity as a society to respond to challenges in generative ways, by evolving ourselves “vertically,” by upgrading the way we listen and attend, the way we converse and think, and the way we organize and coordinate in the context of larger systems.
Last week I suggested that such an upgrade of our societal operating system (OS) should include advancing and transforming our economies, our democracies, and our education systems. It is the latter that I focus on in this column: how to how to reinvent our institutions of higher education through their transformation from an ivory-towered into a distributed eco-system for societal renewal.
Vertical Literacy: Addressing the Knowing-Doing Gap
The difficulties we have in meeting today’s global challenges, such as implementing the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) worldwide, are not caused by a knowledge gap. We have all the knowledge we need. The problem is a knowing-doing gap: a disconnect between our collective consciousness and our collective actions. In most societal systems we collectively create results that (almost) nobody wants. Examples: the ecological divide (the self-nature disconnect), the social divide (the self-other disconnect), and the spiritual divide (the self-self disconnect—that is, the disconnect between my current and my emerging future self).
These gaps and divides are amplified by the silo structure of our key institutions and the mindset of the decision makers that operate inside them. To address these issues at their root requires two things: new platforms for cross-sector co-creation and an upgrade in the operating system that people use to collaborate—practices that facilitate a shift fromego-system to eco-system awareness.
Figure 1 maps the landscape of options for such an operating system. In our research we have identified four different operating systems—in other words, four fields of attention that social systems can operate from: habitual, ego-systemic, empathic, eco-systemic.
Since I have presented the Matrix of Social Evolution in much more detail elsewhere, allow me here to stick to its essence: the matrix shows that we are stuck with our collective knowing-doing gap because we try to solve level 4 problems with an operating system that runs on OS 1.0, 2.0, or OS 3.0. But, as we learned from Einstein, you cannot solve problems at the same level of thinking and consciousness that created them.
The result of that mismatch is on display every single day: more problems lead to more felt pressure and frustrations, which lead to more destruction and “absencing” (to use the language of last week’s column), which in turn lead to more problems, felt pressure, frustrations, and so forth. That in a nutshell is our vertical development challenge: how to move from the vicious cycle of reacting to disruption powered by OS 1.0, 2.0, or 3.0 to a generative response that is powered by 4.0—that is, by a process of co-creating the future.
The lack of vertical literacyis the main problem in our universities and schools today. Talk to experienced CEOs and CPOs (chief people officers) of major companies and ask them what they need. They commonly say: people, teams, and leaders that can make our organization thrive in a world of VUCA (volatility, uncertainty, complexity, ambiguity). By that, I believe they mean people and capacities that can take their organization into the 4.0 world in which they respond to disruption by co-sensing and co-shaping the future. Then go to universities and talk to faculty and deans of management and engineering schools. Many, maybe most, are rather illiterate when it comes to vertical development. They think mostly in terms of horizontal development—for example, about adding another skill here or another app or course there. They do not think in terms of upgrading the entire educational OS—of our students, our learners, and our societal systems.
But if you think about it, if we follow Plutarch, I believe that the only reason universities exist in the first place is to provide vertical developmental literacy. Especially now. If you want the app, you just go to an online learning store like edx.org and get your free knowledge download. Done! You don’t need a physical university for that. The primary reason we have universities and other institutions of higher education today is to support the development of vertical literacy. That means creating a learning environment in which the learner can step into his or her highest future potential in the context of hands-on societal challenges. In our experience, this requires us, as learners, to upgrade the way we pay attention and listen, to upgrade the way we converse, dialogue, and think, to upgrade the way we organize and coordinate in the context of VUCA shaped environments. Everything else is secondary. Vertical literacy gives us the vocabulary and capacities to:
become a blackbelt in listening with our minds and hearts wide open
turn a conversation from debate to generative dialogue
shift organizational fields from competing silos to generative eco-systems
invent new coordination mechanisms that operate from shared awareness.
Ten Principles of the New University
How do we build vertical literacy at scale? Well, not by placing learners inside lecture halls. And also not by separating out humanities, social sciences, and STEM into separate universes. That much we know. What it will take is nothing less than a complete reinvention of schooling and higher ed based on a new set of principles. Here is a first cut at a list of core ideas:
(1) Co-initiate: Put the learner into the driver’s seat of profound societal change. The learner is not a consumer. She or he is a partner in making the world a better place.
(2) Co-sense: Move the outer place of learning from the lecture hall to the real world. This isn’t just about action learning but also includes immersion journeys to the global hotspots of societal renewal across cultures.
(3) Embodiment: Move the inner place of learning from the head to the heart, and from the heart to the hand. The essence of learning in this century revolves around activating the intelligence of the heart and then putting it to use in serving the needs of others and the whole.
(4) Science 2.0: Bend the beam of scientific observation back onto the observing self. At the intersection between the old, dying civilization and the one that is being born is the transformation of science. Science 2.0 must integrate first-, second-, and third-person data by bending the beam of observationback onto the observing self.
(5)Systems Thinking: Make the system see itself. Systems thinking is a core capacity of vertical literacy. Students must learn methods to make the system see itself.
(6) Systems Sensing: Make the system sense itself. This is the core capacity to unlock collective creativity. Learners must become literate in “aesthetics” in its original meaning (aistesis means to sense): the cultivation of all our senses.
(7) Systems Inversion:Transform the system through eco-system activation. All societal sectors go through similar institutional changes: from perpetuating systemic silos to cultivating generative social field in the context of their eco-systems. Learners need to be literate in facilitating this shift.
(8) Know Thyself: To create vertical developmental literacy, we need to integrate science, social change, and self. Deepening our self knowledge requires us to access not only the intelligence of the open mind (curiosity), but also the intelligences of the open heart (compassion), and open will (courage).
(9) Tend the Fire: To patiently elicit and draw out the unique qualities and expression of each person with perseverance and in support of his or her highest possible future.
(10) The Fourth Teacher: Use nature and social fields as gateways. The Reggio Emilia approach is known for seeing the environment as the third teacher. Building on that we see the cultivation of profound learning relationships to nature and to social fields as gateways to the deeper sources of knowing (”the fourth teacher”).
Five Building Blocks
How can we build a 21st-century university that embodies these principles of vertical literacy, i.e., of awareness-based systems change? The answer will vary across contexts, cultures, and geographies. But in our experiments we have found the following five building blocks to be critical (Figure 2).
(1)Cross-Sector Innovation Labs
Create cross-sector Innovation Labs that bring together key stakeholders and innovators who need each other in order to evolve the system they operate within. With our colleagues and partners, we have refined a lab process that generates remarkable results.
(2)Cross-Intelligence Capacity Building
Create massive online-to-offline mechanisms for complementing the labs and building the deeper capacities at scale (that means at marginal costs close to zero). With the u.lab MOOC we have prototyped a mechanism that combines the democratization of access to knowledge with the activation of the deep learning cycle. Some of the early key learnings from u.lab, which has attracted more than 100,000 registered participants from 185 countries since its launch in 2015, can be found here.
(3)Awareness-Based Action Research: Deep Data Imaging
Although “big data” has been useful in many parts of our daily lives, the algorithms that increasingly shape our reality have also became a liability that undermines some of society’s foundations (as discussed in last week’s column). We need to progress from big data to deep data. By deep data I mean data that advance vertical literacy by making us look at ourselves in a mirror, individually and collectively, by making us aware of our own patterns and blind spots, by making us see ourselves through the eyes of another or of the whole. An example of big data is your Facebook feed: Facebook filters out all news that it thinks does not match your world view (i.e., it keeps us stuck in our own echo chambers). Examples of deep data mirroring are the case clinics and global mindfulness practices described in the u.lab link above.
This New World
The current capitalist system is broken. Get updates on our progress toward building a fairer world.
Another mechanism for generating deep data (i.e., data that help us to see ourselves and to deepen our awareness) that we have developed over the past decade is Social Presencing Theater (SPT). SPT practices help complex stakeholder groups to see themselves and their evolutionary patterns through the mirror of the whole, thereby shifting their individual consciousness from ego-system to eco-system awareness. We are now working to develop SPT as a research methodology that allows people to visualize and understand the deep (and mostly invisible) structures of social change. We see the potential for SPT “scans” to do for social field research over the next decade what MRI scans did for mindfulness and neuroscience over the past decade.
(4)A Community of Eco-System Catalysts
The fourth building block deals with people. The best concept is worth nothing if the faculty do not embody these new forms and the principles of student-centered learning. The requirements of today’s tenure-track system put faculty on pathways that keep them far from the experiences that are most relevant to reinventing the type of education described here. We need a new faculty track for reflective practitioners who are more deeply involved in major projects of societal transformation and who can share their knowledge-in-action with students while also helping learners deepen their own capacities for embodied knowing.
(5)Places, Platforms, and Practices for Making the System Sense Itself
The fifth building block concerns places, platforms, and core practices. The piece most needed here is places: high-quality spaces that are designed and structured to build vertical literacy.
Figure 2 summarizes these five building blocks that, if put into place, could prototype and accelerate the journey of higher ed institutions toward 4.0 worldwide—a journey that in many microcosms of higher ed has already begun to take shape.
Five Bold Initiatives to Actualize the New University
While I have been holding the vision of such a new university for some years, it is only now that I feel it is completely doable. To advance the journey toward realizing it, we—the core team of the u.lab and Presencing Institute community—will launch five major initiatives throughout 2018.
(1)4.0 Labs: Co-shaping the Future by Activating Generative Fields
We will convene 4.0 Labs at both the country and the regional level. We are currently working with the government of the Netherlands and Scotland on prototyping a country-level lab. We intend to launch the European 4.0 Lab in June 2018. Each of these 4.0 Labs will co-define its own focus at the outset. With the United Nations Development Group (UNDG) we are discussing how to use 4.0 Labs to accelerate the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on a country level.
The key idea of all these labs is very simple: the next wave of innovation in food, farming, finance, health, learning, and leadership will be highly interrelated and sourced from a shared co-creative 4.0 territory (see Figure 3 below). Since no one can do this alone, we need to create cross-sectional infrastructures that support these initiatives on that journey.
(2)u.lab 2x: Transforming Our Economy
Our second initiative will be launched in March 2018. A joint eco-system of sites and platforms among HuffPost and PI will capture and share the new economic narrative that is shifting the economy from ego to eco. Starting in April, each month our online platform will present inspiring, interactive, 60-minute live-broadcasts. Between the monthly live sessions we will hold global community cafés where change makers from across sectors, systems, and cultures can join the conversation. These will incorporate video-based discussions in small breakout groups and help us to move from traditional media and social media to more interactive and engaging forms of conversation, and from there to globally distributed ways of co-generating future media that change the world for the better.
(3)Social Field Research Summer School
The third initiative focuses on launching a research project that blends SPT practices, , and data-driven third-person research to investigate the deep structures of social fields. The focus in 2018 will be on establishing the research group and integrating these methodologies. Starting in 2019 an annual Berlin Summer School for Social Field Research will invite 50 leading awareness-based action researchers from around the world to work with each other and with senior thought leaders and investigators in their fields. The intention is to run the Berlin Summer School for 10 years in order to do for awareness-based field research what the Mind and Life Institute did for mindfulness and neuroscience: establish a new domain of research and replicate it worldwide.
(4)Eco-system Catalyst Masterclass
The fourth initiative, the masterclass for eco-system catalysts, will target the most advanced practitioners and activators of social eco-systems of innovation in order to help them advance their skills, mirror and support each other on their journey of Self, and interweave their respective innovation ecologies across regions, sectors, and cultures. This masterclass will be a year-long journey limited to 50 participants. The first cohort will start its journey in Boston in October 2018. As a group they will activate and cultivate a globally distributed innovation ecology. From that group we expect a new breed of young faculty to emerge who are literate across all of the intelligences discussed above.
The fifth initiative focuses on upgrading our place- and web-based infrastructures to better serve the evolving needs of our rapidly growing global community. One key focus is on finding physical campus areas for all of the above (which together will constitute the “u.school”). The first conversations for such a campus are happening in Berlin. The longer term intention is to establish campus areas in all major cultures and geographies. These u.school campuses will partner with multiple universities to co-deliver a curriculum in vertical societal literacy across all system levels (Figure 1 matrix) and then create open source resources that allow for the replication of this curriculum in universities worldwide.
Reinventing the Idea of the University
The classical university was based on the unity of research and teaching. The modern university has been based on the unity of research, teaching, and application. The emerging 21st-century university, I believe, will be based on the unity of research, teaching, and civilizational renewal. To transform higher education into its most advanced evolutionary state requires nothing less than a full inversion of its traditional discipline structure toward 4.0 ways of innovating and learning.
The purpose of education is not to fill vessels. It’s also not to spurn people who diligently rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic. The purpose of the 21st-century education and university is to help us develop what matters most: vertical literacy—the capacity to sense and actualize our highest future possibility in the face of disruption.
All the elements for making this happen at scale already exist. By connecting them we can activate a vibrant global eco-system of 4.0 Labs, place-based hubs, change maker communities, research initiatives, distributed media producers, and eco-system catalysts—in short, a living ecology that can protect the flame that Plutarch was talking about and that we need to pass on from one generation to the next. For it is this flame—the flame of the creative human spirit—that at no point in the history of our planet has been so at risk, so attainable, and so necessary for addressing our ecological, social, and spiritual divides. We need intentional places to kindle, cultivate and evolve that flame.
At the entrance to the Academy of Athens there was an inscription that said: Let no one enter here who does not know math and geometry. What should the inscription be at the entrance to the new university that we aspire to create today, 2,400 years later? Maybe it could read: Let no one enter here who does not know that the issues outside are a mirror of the issues inside; i.e., let no one enter here who isvertically illiterate. The new university comes into being—the flame is kindling—wherever and whenever we bend the beam of collective attention back onto ourselves, whenever we shift our awareness from ego to eco in order to regenerate our economic, democratic, and educational systems from that awareness and source.
The teachings of our ancestors give us a way of life that allows us to be personally fulfilled and helpful to our families and communities.
The Association for Tribal Heritage is dedicated to supporting the Native American traditions in a global society. We believe Native American communities can bridge the two worlds and live a traditional way of life, while expanding the horizons of this modern world.
The Sophia Institute is a center of learning that provides innovative programs that foster the rise of the Feminine, cultivating wisdom and mindfulness, for a more just, sustainable, and flourishing world. Sophia offers retreats, lectures, classes, and special events, featuring nationally and internationally renowned leaders and teachers.
The Dharma Drum Mountain Buddhist Association (DDMBA) is committed to serving humanity by working to relieve the various forms of human suffering — physical, emotional and spiritual. It’s programs range from international dialogues on peace building in regions of conflict to classes on methods of cultivating peace within. One of DDMBA’s primary functions is to support scholarly research in the field of Buddhism, particularly the Chan tradition, instructing and encouraging Buddhist practitioners through its centers in the United States.
DDMBA’s international activities include the organization of seminars and conferences that enhance understanding and respect between different cultures and religions. It also initiates programs for environmental protection, leadership training for young adults, and it provides charitable aid to those in need.
The basis of GPIW’s work is the dynamic expression of unity, emerging from the heart of wisdom of the world’s spiritual traditions, and our own hearts, into a community. We believe this narrative can help animate social and economic structures and systems that better reflect humanity’s natural evolution toward greater wholeness. An essential part of this shift is the coming into a balanced and sacred relationship with the earth and all living beings. Feminine wisdom and the power of love can serve as the fulcrum for this inner and outer transformation.
Ecopsychologists have suggested that mindful awareness of our interdependence with nature may not only help us regain our lost, ecologically embedded identity (Roszak, 1992) but may also help us behave more sustainably, closing the documented gap between proenvironmental attitudes and behaviors. We suggest more specifically that, in contemporary consumer culture with its dearth of proenvironmental norms and cues, mindful attentiveness may be necessary to develop sustainable habits. To explore the connection between mindfulness and sustainable behavior, we measured 100 adults attending a Midwestern sustainability expo on two mindfulness factors: acting with awareness and observing sensations. As predicted, acting with awareness was significantly positively correlated with self-reported sustainable behavior. This finding is consistent with the idea that, until sustainable decisions become the societal default, their enactment may depend on focused consideration of options and mindful behavior. In contrast, observing sensations did not predict behavior. This calls into question the notion that feeling connected to the world outside of ourselves is a precondition for sustainable action. We call for more research to further test the validity and generalizability of our findings.
Recent imaging results suggest that individuals automatically share the emotions of others when exposed to their emotions. We question the assumption of the automaticity and propose a contextual approach, suggesting several modulatory factors that might influence empathic brain responses. Contextual appraisal could occur early in emotional cue evaluation, which then might or might not lead to an empathic brain response, or not until after an empathic brain response is automatically elicited. We propose two major roles for empathy; its epistemological role is to provide information about the future actions of other people, and important environmental properties. Its social role is to serve as the origin of the motivation for cooperative and prosocial behavior, as well as help for effective social communication. ?? 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Humanity is facing increasingly complex environmental and sustainability challenges. Current coordination mechanisms, problem-solving strategies, and modes of scientific inquiry, teaching and learning appear insufficient to address these challenges. As a result, inner transition (embodied in notions such as mindfulness and compassion) is emerging as a potential new area of exploration. The “Contemplative Sustainable Futures Program” was set up to explore this new area and create space and opportunities for learning, networking and knowledge development on this topic. In this context, special attention is given to the issue of – what we call – ‘mindful climate adaptation and risk reduction’.
taken from https://www.lucsus.lu.se/research/urban-governance/contemplative-sustainable-futures
Christine is an expert in sustainable city development with focus on inclusive climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction/ management, climate policy mainstreaming, urban resilience and transformation.
The research at LUCSUS focuses on sustainability challenges such as water conflicts, food security, land use changes and urban transformation – and is often conducted in international cooperation. We have a strong international research profile through the centre’s involvement in the Earth System Governance Project and by the appointment as a Right Livelihood College. We also coordinate the Linnaeus program LUCID (Lund University Centre of Excellence for Integration of Social and Natural Dimensions of Sustainability).
We are working to make Stanford a compassionate place. This includes having students, faculty, and staff sign on and reaffirm the Charter for Compassion, and to collaboratively create a Five Year Compassionate Action Plan signed by President Hennessy, VPUE Harry J. Elam, Jr., VPGE Patricia J. Gumport, and the ASSU Undergraduate Senate.
While science has made great strides in treating pathologies of the human mind, far less research exists to date on positive qualities of the human mind including compassion, altruism and empathy. Yet these prosocial traits are innate to us and lie at the very centerpiece of our common humanity. Our capacity to feel compassion has ensured the survival and thriving of our species over millennia. For this reason, the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education (CCARE) at Stanford University School of Medicine was founded in 2008 with the explicit goal of promoting, supporting, and conducting rigorous scientific studies of compassion and altruistic behavior. Founded and directed by Dr. James Doty, Clinical Professor of Neurosurgery, CCARE is established within the Department of Neurosurgery. To date, CCARE has collaborated with a number of prominent neuroscientists, behavioral scientists, geneticists and biomedical researchers to closely examine the physiological and psychological correlates of compassion and altruism.
We are a global community exploring the potential for secular mindfulness training and practice to contribute to more sustainable, caring and socially just societies. We believe the human capacity for mindful awareness is vital for effective responses to social, economic and environmental challenges; and that mindfulness practice, courses and communities need to be responsive to the social and political context of individual stress, wellbeing and change.
Psychology and Consumer Culture provides an in-depth psychological analysis of consumerism that draws from a wide range of theoretical, clinical, and methodological approaches. The contributors to this edited volume demonstrate that consumerism and the culture that surrounds it exert profound and often undesirable effects on both people’s individual lives and on society as a whole. Far from being distant influences, advertising, consumption, materialism, and the capitalistic economic system affect personal, social, and ecological well being on many levels.
Authors address consumerism’s effect on everything from culture, ethnicity, and childhood development to consciousness, gender roles, identity, work stress, and psychopathology. Contributors provide a variety of potential interventions for counteracting the negative influence of consumerism on individuals and on society. The book makes a strong case that, despite psychology’s past reticence to investigate issues related to consumerism, such topics are crucial to understanding human life in the contemporary age.
‘Walking the talk’ is a collection of interviews and stories from young adults on how the younger generation are engaging with faith, spirituality and social action amid the challenges of our times.
Spirituality in a time of global crisis
Young people are growing up under the influences of globalisation, consumerism, social media and new technology. They face a future beset with multiple challenges to our planetary stability, such as global ecocide, the rise of religious extremism and the refugee crisis. The millennial generation are reported to be the least religious that our world has ever known. And yet some surveys show they are simply rejecting organised religion in favour of self-organised spirituality that draws on many different sources.
This edited collection of stories asks: How are young people engaging with faith, religion and spirituality at this time of crisis and transition?
Generation Y are doing faith differently!
For a start, young people have a more global interconnected outlook. They also have more flexible religious identities. They draw on the wisdom of the different religious practices that are available around them and they relate to each other’s traditions more openly. Many have a deep concern for the Earth, economic justice and a values-based way of life. They are co-creating their own non-hierarchical spaces – either within traditional religious institutions or completely outside them. They build community together and share what nourishes their souls. Most importantly, they cannot separate faith from the need to respond to what they see around them. Spirituality belongs to the inner life but is also the driving force for social action, for building a just and sustainable future.
Young people face many, many challenges – often including a lack of understanding from their elders. Today’s faith leaders also face a major challenge in meeting the needs of this generation and staying in relationship. There is a great need for the talents and unique perspective of the younger generation to be better supported and better understood.
This book will explore these themes through stories, lively interviews and case-studies of new emerging youth-led communities. The book also asks what all this tells us about the evolution of faith in the future and humanity’s changing relationship with the sacred.
Nachhaltigkeit durch Achtsamkeit?, Vienna, Dienstag, 20. Juni 2017
WU Matters. WU Talks. Nachhaltigkeit durch Achtsamkeit? Über Mindfulness, Megatrends und Managementmoden
Infos & Anmeldung:
„Mindfulness“ ist in aller Munde. Weisen die vielen Diskussionen und Events zum Thema Achtsamkeit auf einen Megatrend hin? Oder haben wir es mit einer Modeerscheinung zu tun? Und warum ist das Thema für die Nachhaltigkeit relevant? Bei der 14. WU-NachhaltigkeitsKontroverse beleuchten hochkarätige Expertinnen und Experten diese und andere Fragen aus unterschiedlichen Perspektiven. Es geht um die Rolle von Achtsamkeit in Management, Personalführung und Nachhaltigkeit und gesellschaftstheoretische Perspektiven auf das Thema. Eine Übung und Interventionen werden einen direkten Einblick davon vermitteln, was Achtsamkeit praktisch bedeuten kann.
Diese NachhaltigkeitsKontroverse ist eine Kooperation des Kompetenzzentrums für Nachhaltigkeit mit der Executive Academy.
– Karin Bauer, Der Standard
. Dr. Ingolfur Blühdorn, Institut für Gesellschaftswandel und Nachhaltigkeit, WU
– – Thomas Klien, Achtsamkeitstrainer
– . Michael Müller-Camen, PhD, Institut für Personalmanagement, WU
– Helga Pattart-Drexler, M.A., WU Executive Academy
WEBSITE: “Angaangaq ist ein Ältester der Eskimo-Kalaallit aus Westgrönland, der von seinem Volk in den höchsten Rang des Schamanen berufen wurde. Er ist seit vielen Jahren als traditioneller Heiler tätig. Sein Einsatz für Umwelt und indigene Themen führte ihn in über 60 Länder der Welt.”
BiNKA (German acronym for education for sustainable consumption through mindfulness training) is an inter- and transdisciplinary research and development project funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
It aims to investigate the relationship between mindfulness and sustainable consumption in an intervention study.
BiNKA is a cooperation of the Technische Universität Berlin and the UNESCO Chair of higher education for sustainable development at the Leuphana University Lüneburg. Project management is located at the Technische Universität Berlin, in the department of vocational education/economics and sustainable consumption. Three partners in practice, two project partners and several network partners are also part of the cooperation. The project is funded for three years (2015 to 2018) by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
My mission is to promote human flourishing. The last several years my research in philosophy and sustainability has focused on how our inner lives affect our actions, and how contemplative practices can help to positively influence how we interact with and transform our human systems. I am fascinated by that mysterious interplay between the individual and the larger social and institutional structures. The ecological crisis reveals fundamental flaws in the way we relate to one another and our environment. It is also by definition a turning point, an opportunity for us to develop a symbiotic relationship with the earth and each other.