World-building the real world part 2b: The … other … why: Changing the default civilisation.

I am so tired of being powerless. Of having my agency crumpled up and thrown back in my face. Of having this futile fight against badly run countries and corporates.

I feel that the whole notion of “a country” with physical borders is outdated. Why get screwed over just because of where or what colour you were born? We have the internet. Surely we can do better. So if we don’t need countries, and we don’t want corporates, what other sort of grouping would work? Can we go live in the metaverse?

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The waking amid the woke

Notes from a book by Anand Giridharadas, called “The Persuaders: Winning Hearts and Minds in a Divided Age”, and in it the author interviews an activist called Loretta Ross.

p36 But the question for you is not whether you disagree with me. It’s whether you think that I’m a threat to your humanity. And that’s the question I want you to answer.

p41 transformation comes from relationships

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Engineers: we need to talk.

Something happened today which made me think about how we deal with ‘respect’, and the ‘old guard’ and ‘engineers’. I’m still processing what happened and many of the people I am discussing this with requests confidentiality, so maybe I’ll update this later once we agree on it all and have their permission. It did remind me of a few things, most notably a workshop on complexity we had in March 2018.

Sometimes when people ask me why Future Water exists, before I go into the transdisciplinary blah blah company line, I say that we’re trying to teach engineers to talk to other people. It started as a joke, because it was launched by a team who consisted mostly of engineers, and is currently hosted in the Engineering Faculty, but I am more and more convinced that is what our true purpose is.

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Inter-generational dynamics

Quartz, my favourite international news-related website/newsletter shared this article about a management exercise about ‘user manuals’. I found it so beautiful, and so much to process, working across generations and being in relationship with someone in some other generation, and not quite fitting into/relating to whatever generation I’m supposed to be in… To me it speaks to the type of systems work, transdisciplinary work we’re doing, it’s not just about coping with people of different ages. As Leah mentions in her piece “The generational divide in today’s modern workplace is unavoidable. … But when generational frustration turns to judgment (which often leads to dismissiveness), no one wins.” I think even once we sort the generations out, or correct for this, different skills and personalities have the same issue. 

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