Wicked and Wise: Climate Change, Democracy, and Integral Theory

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Alan Watkins, co-author of Wicked and Wise with Ken Wilber, talks to Jeff Salzman about climate change, the problems of globalization and democracy, getting CEO’s to do the right thing, and that pesky Donald Trump.

A few years ago Alan Watkins noticed while watching a news story about a global crisis that he kept hearing about the same problems over and over again. “Why is it that these problems are intractable?” he asked himself. Thus was born Wicked and Wise: How to Solve the World’s Toughest Problems, which he co-wrote with Ken Wilber.

Many [business leaders] are beginning to realize that there is something else other than quarterly profit, there’s something else other than returns to shareholder, there’s something else other than just growth and the relentless pursuit of growth. More companies are recognizing social purpose is important. –Alan Watkins

In Wicked and Wise, Alan and Ken use climate change as an example of a wicked problem, which they define as a situation with multiple dimensions, multiple stakeholders, multiple causes and symptoms, and which is evolving. Using the integral map they explicate its component parts and provide solutions, which is where the “wise” part of the title comes from. “Integral coherence”, or applying the integral map in a coherent fashion, is the essence of the solution.

Wicked is the beginning of a series of books applying integral wisdom to our thorniest problems. The second book, Crowdocracy, has already been published as well.

You might even say, looking back developmentally, that moving into every new stage is a wicked problem, because you’re facing problems that you don’t have solutions for. –Jeff Salzman

Alan Watkins has multiple degrees and is recognized as an international expert on leadership and human performance. He’s written numerous academic papers and academic book chapters in multiple fields as well as authoring five books himself. He lives in Hampshire, England. Find out more about Alan and his work at www.complete-coherence.com.

Click here to purchase Wicked and Wise by Ken Wilber and Alan Watkins.

Alan Watkins

About Alan Watkins

Alan Watkins is recognized as an international expert on leadership and human performance. He has a broad mix of commercial, academic, scientific and technological abilities. Over the past 18 years he has been a coach to many of Europe’s top business leaders and has helped companies treble share price, enter the FTSE 100, salvage difficult turnarounds and establish market leadership in their industry.

Jeffrey Salzman

About Jeffrey Salzman

Jeff Salzman spent the last few years as co-founder and a lead teacher at Boulder Integral, now The Integral Center. These days he travels, teaches and comments about current events on Integral Life and The Daily Evolver.