NSL Blog

Upgrading civic infrastructure for a non-linear world

April 3, 2013

3321220Michael Sandel argues there’s a role for governments, for companies, for civil society, for religious institutions, for educational institutions, for the media. He says all of these institutions can contribute toward forming values and strengthening civic virtue. But so many of these institutions, are in disarray or discredited, that they are not all in very strong health. And that’s part of our challenge. No Straight Lines explores this theme and idea, arguing that we face a design challenge in reinterpreting these institutions for today. Our collective challenge requires better thinking for a better world in designing transformationally and sustainably for humanity, and in so doing, accommodating humanity‚Äôs richness and complexity, which means striving for sustainable economic success, better government, education and healthcare.

Sandel: Role of institutions in rebuiliding civic infrastructure from FreedomLab on Vimeo.

It demands innovation and the transformation of all the existing organisations, legal systems, economic or otherwise, that currently frame and define our world. It is an epic goal. But like all the stories told in No Straight Lines, all very doable. Because ultimately like a craftsman we are defined by what we do as opposed to what we think or what we say. Of course not everyone will welcome such a point of view as this is a defining story about power and control. To make for a more sustainable and equitable world, organisations whatever and whoever they are, currently holding positions of power, with monopolistic intent, are going to have to relinquish their white-knuckle grip. But as we have seen from the streets of Cairo, to the behemoths of the corporate world and everything in between, no one will be left untouched by the desire of humanity to find a better way of existing and happily going about their daily work and their daily lives.

What might that look like? A 28 minute listen via the BBC

Designing for Transformation

Designing for Transformation

 

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