economic growth and sustainability systems thinking for a complex world

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Economic Growth And Sustainability

Author : Karen L. Higgins
ISBN : 9780128031087
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 48. 16 MB
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How to sustain our world for future generations has perplexed us for centuries. We have reached a crossroads: we may choose the rocky path of responsibility or continue on the paved road of excess that promises hardship for our progeny. Independent efforts to resolve isolated issues are inadequate. Different from these efforts and from other books on the topic, this book uses systems thinking to understand the dominant forces that are shaping our hope for sustainability. It first describes a mental model - the bubble that holds our beliefs - that emerges from preponderant world views and explains current global trends. The model emphasizes economic growth and drives behavior toward short-term and self-motivated outcomes that thwart sustainability. The book then weaves statistical trends into a system diagram and shows how the economic, environmental, and societal contributors of sustainability interact. From this holistic perspective, it finds leverage points where actions can be most effective and combines eight areas of intervention into an integrated plan. By emphasizing both individual and collective actions, it addresses the conundrum of how to blend human nature with sustainability. Finally, it identifies primary three lessons we can learn by applying systems thinking to sustainability. Its metaphor-rich and accessible style makes the complex topic approachable and allows the reader to appreciate the intricate balance required to sustain life on Earth. Highlights the application of system thinking in economics Identifies systemic leveraging actions for achieving sustainability Outlines a comprehensive and integrated plan for achieving sustainable stewardship in the future

Thinking In Systems

Author : Donella Meadows
ISBN : 1603581480
Genre : Science
File Size : 88. 30 MB
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In the years following her role as the lead author of the international bestseller, Limits to Growth—the first book to show the consequences of unchecked growth on a finite planet— Donella Meadows remained a pioneer of environmental and social analysis until her untimely death in 2001. Thinking in Systems, is a concise and crucial book offering insight for problem solving on scales ranging from the personal to the global. Edited by the Sustainability Institute’s Diana Wright, this essential primer brings systems thinking out of the realm of computers and equations and into the tangible world, showing readers how to develop the systems-thinking skills that thought leaders across the globe consider critical for 21st-century life. Some of the biggest problems facing the world—war, hunger, poverty, and environmental degradation—are essentially system failures. They cannot be solved by fixing one piece in isolation from the others, because even seemingly minor details have enormous power to undermine the best efforts of too-narrow thinking. While readers will learn the conceptual tools and methods of systems thinking, the heart of the book is grander than methodology. Donella Meadows was known as much for nurturing positive outcomes as she was for delving into the science behind global dilemmas. She reminds readers to pay attention to what is important, not just what is quantifiable, to stay humble, and to stay a learner. In a world growing ever more complicated, crowded, and interdependent, Thinking in Systems helps readers avoid confusion and helplessness, the first step toward finding proactive and effective solutions.

Aid On The Edge Of Chaos

Author : Ben Ramalingam
ISBN : 9780199578023
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 69. 54 MB
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Aid has become a tangle of donors and recipients, so unwieldy that it is in danger of collapse. This ground-breaking book presents fresh thinking that transcends the 'more' verses 'less' arguments. Drawing on complexity theory it shows how aid could be transformed into a truly dynamic form of global cooperation fit for the twenty-first century.

Complex Systems In Finance And Econometrics

Author : Robert A. Meyers
ISBN : 9781441977007
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 65. 6 MB
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"This book consists of selections from the Encyclopedia of complexity and systems science edited by Robert A. Myers"--T.p. verso.

Systems Thinking For Social Change

Author : David Peter Stroh
ISBN : 9781603585811
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 56. 45 MB
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Donors, leaders of nonprofits, and public policy makers usually have the best of intentions to serve society and improve social conditions. But often their solutions fall far short of what they want to accomplish and what is truly needed. Moreover, the answers they propose and fund often produce the opposite of what they want over time. We end up with temporary shelters that increase homelessness, drug busts that increase drug-related crime, or food aid that increases starvation. How do these unintended consequences come about and how can we avoid them? By applying conventional thinking to complex social problems, we often perpetuate the very problems we try so hard to solve, but it is possible to think differently, and get different results. Systems Thinking for Social Change enables readers to contribute more effectively to society by helping them understand what systems thinking is and why it is so important in their work. It also gives concrete guidance on how to incorporate systems thinking in problem solving, decision making, and strategic planning without becoming a technical expert. Systems thinking leader David Stroh walks readers through techniques he has used to help people improve their efforts to end homelessness, improve public health, strengthen education, design a system for early childhood development, protect child welfare, develop rural economies, facilitate the reentry of formerly incarcerated people into society, resolve identity-based conflicts, and more. The result is a highly readable, effective guide to understanding systems and using that knowledge to get the results you want.

Aid On The Edge Of Chaos

Author : Ben Ramalingam
ISBN : 9780191503443
Genre : Business & Economics
File Size : 80. 47 MB
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Many agree that the foreign aid system - which today involves virtually every nation on earth - needs drastic change. But there is much conflict as to what should be done. In Aid on the Edge of Chaos, Ben Ramalingam argues that what is most needed is the creative and innovative transformation of how aid works. Foreign aid today is dominated by linear, mechanistic ideas that emerged from early twentieth century industry, and are ill-suited to the world we face today. The problems and systems aid agencies deal with on a daily basis have more in common with ecosystems than machines: they are interconnected, diverse, and dynamic; they cannot be just simply re-engineered or fixed. Outside of aid, social scientists, economists, business leaders, and policy makers have started applying innovative and scientific approaches to such problems, informed by ideas from the 'new science' of complex adaptive systems. Inspired by these efforts, aid practitioners and researchers have started experimenting with such approaches in their own work. This book showcases the experiences, insights, and often remarkable results of innovative thinkers and practitioners who are working to bring these approaches into the mainstream of aid. From transforming child malnutrition to rethinking economic growth, from building peace to reversing desertification, from rural Vietnam to urban Kenya, the ideas of complex systems thinking are starting to be used to make foreign aid more relevant, more appropriate, and more catalytic. Aid on the Edge of Chaos argues that such ideas and approaches should play a vital part of the transformation of aid. Aid should move from being an imperfect post-World War II global resource transfer system, to a new form of global cooperation that is truly fit for the twenty-first century.

Knowledge In Action

Author : Annemarie van Paassen
ISBN : 9789086867240
Genre : Science
File Size : 32. 12 MB
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Wageningen Univerisity and Research Centre is known for its practical and societally relevant research in spatial development. Stakeholders currently put much emphasis on participatory processes in landscape planning procedures. This poses a special challenge for research. What role does research play in our present world characterised by complexity, competing claims and development needs, and an increased concern for climate change and environmental impact? In the book 'Knowledge in Action' we explore different types of transdisciplinary research that scientists engage in. Depending on the societal context and the interests of local citizens, researchers apply different research approaches to optimally incorporate the various points of view in their research and promote processes enhancing dialogue and shared results. In the book authors present their research experiences: their theoretical inspiration, the research methodology applied to consult, share and collaborate with societal actors in order to create options for change. The book includes several striking examples from The Netherlands (both successful and less effective), and also innovative examples from communities in Africa and Asia. The authors reflect on opportunities, problems and dilemma's they had to deal with. They especially address how far the role and theoretical perspectives of collaborative researchers can lead them in action research. Can they limit themselves to joint knowledge production and learning processes or should they engage in strategic positioning, advocacy and entrepreneurship to make it happen? The book discusses the issues that researchers should consider when they position their research activities within ongoing developments at landscape level. Read the book and judge for yourself.

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