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tsuomela : problems   20

The cuckoo clock syndrome : addicted to command, allergic to leadership - WRAP: Warwick Research Archive Portal
This article considers the extent to which we are addicted to particular ways of configuring the world and responding in a culturally appropriate way. It suggests that the original Tame and Wicked problems typology of Rittell and Webber (1973) can be usefully expanded to provide a heuristic for explaining this addiction and then focuses upon the most common approach an addiction to Crisis and Command. Some likely explanations for this addiction are discussed and some illustrative examples provided. It concludes that not only does our predilection for Crisis and Command undermine our attempts to address Wicked problems adequately, but also that 'Leadership' (defined as persuading the collective to take responsibility for collective problems) is often regarded not just as difficult and dangerous, but as the enemy of the people'. We are, then, not only likely to be addicted to Command but also likely to be allergic to leadership.
problems  problem-solving  wicked-problems  understanding  solutions  culture  hierarchy  future  leadership 
july 2012 by tsuomela
Hard Problems in Social Science § Division of Social Science
"On Saturday, April 10, 2010, a dozen “big thinkers” shared their thoughts on the hardest problems in social science. We were fortunate to have the creativity and brilliance of a host of distinguished speakers. They started the discussion (you can view the videos by clicking on the links at right), and then the symposium was followed by an active discussion on Facebook, resulting in many suggestions for additional "hard problems"."
social-science  problems 
may 2011 by tsuomela
Why Last Chapters Disappoint - Essay -
"But in the end, most authors have themselves to blame. Having immersed themselves in a subject, almost all succumb to the hubristic idea that they can find new and unique ideas for solving intractable problems. They rarely do, and even works that do usher in specific reforms or broad social transformations — from “The Jungle” to “The Feminine Mystique” — do so by raising awareness about an issue, not by providing ready-to-go blueprints.

Yet solutions seem to be what our national temper demands. “It is one of the peculiar intellectual accompaniments of democracy that the concept of the insoluble becomes unfashionable — nay, almost infamous,” Mencken wrote in “Notes on Democracy” (1926).."
books  review  problems  social  solutions  cliche  publishing  hubris 
march 2011 by tsuomela
slacktivist: All are responsible
Snowfall in America brings with it, inevitably, a blizzard of "jokes" about the alleged absurdity of global warming. All of these jokes have two things in common: 1) they mention Al Gore, and 2) they're not actually funny.

Being funny isn't the point of these jokes, so it's not surprising that they fail to achieve funniness. What is surprising, though, is that so many people feel compelled to tell "jokes" that aren't actually jokes -- jokes that neither attempt nor achieve funniness. What is the point of such "jokes"? They're like cars without wheels -- why on earth would anyone bother making such a thing?

I have a theory. This is just speculation, and I might be wrong. But then again, I might be right.

The great philosopher and activist Abraham Joshua Heschel said, "Few are guilty; all are responsible."
responsibility  philosophy  guilt  environment  social  problems  collective  blame 
february 2010 by tsuomela
Casaubon’s Book » Blog Archive » The Pedagogy of Collapse
And therein comes Greer’s eminently useful construction - he argues on his blog and in _The Long Descent_ that our crisis of depletion is in fact, not, as it is commonly presented, a problem, with potential solutions. It is rather, he argues, a predicament, a situation we simply face, which cannot be solved. The obvious model predicament is death - something that can be addressed and handled in a whole host of ways, some productive, some not, but that can never be solved - we all die. How we approach our deaths, how we view them, the contexts in which they occur - these details matter enormously, but none of them approach the status of solution, eliminating the basic problem.
environment  philosophy  problems  predicament  complexity  future  climate  global-warming 
september 2009 by tsuomela
Principal-agent problem - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
In political science and economics, the principal-agent problem or agency dilemma treats the difficulties that arise under conditions of incomplete and asymmetric information when a principal hires an agent.
economics  political-science  wikipedia  reference  agents  principal-agent  problems  incentives 
january 2009 by tsuomela

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