Category Archives: How the World Really Works

Less Than Enthusiastic (a guest post by Paul Heft)

My Palo Alto friend and Transition colleague Paul Heft and I have often shared ideas and thoughts on how the world really works, our culture, and what it means to be human. Recently he wrote the following, which he’s allowing … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works | 11 Comments

I’ve Changed My Mind

Human beings, it seems, change our worldviews — what we value and believe to be true — pretty slowly. When I started this blog 12 years ago, my worldview was pretty left-of-centre orthodox, as you can see on the left … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works, Our Culture / Ourselves | 19 Comments

Against Hope: A Primer on Complexity and Collapse

Saturday evening I participated in a PechaKucha-style evening of presentations sponsored by the Bowen Island Arts Council as part of the Canada-wide Culture Days events. For those not familiar with PechaKucha, it requires you to make your presentation precisely 20 slides … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works, Preparing for Civilization's End | 3 Comments

Technology’s False Hope

My latest article, Technology’s False Hope, is up at SHIFT magazine as part of its seventh edition. Check out the whole magazine! And if you like what you read, or prefer to read hard copy, please get this issue as … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works, Preparing for Civilization's End | 2 Comments

Accepting That We Can’t Get There From Here: A Meditation

In 2005, I wrote this little story. I think it’s held up quite well (I was smarter than I thought, back then), so I’m going to start this meditation with it. MESSAGE FROM A MUSHROOM photo by Inda at givnology.com … Continue reading

Posted in Creative Works, How the World Really Works | 2 Comments

Systems Thinking and Complexity 101

This is a synopsis of a talk and mini-workshop I gave recently in Vancouver. It introduces a model for identifying and dealing with both the complicated and complex aspects of issues we face in our own lives, in our organizations … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works, Working Smarter | 8 Comments

Is the Sharing Economy Here Yet?

Industrial Growth Economy Sharing Economy Purpose Facilitate the acquisition and ownership of property Facilitate access to the means of meeting needs Management Hierarchical management and control Collective stewardship in the common interest ‘Work’ Defined jobs at the discretion of owners … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works | 5 Comments

“Save the World” Reading List: 2013 Update

illustration of the complex relationship between economy, energy/resources, and ecology, by the author (‘up’ arrow means ‘increase’; ‘down’ arrow means ‘decrease’); economic collapse, resource exhaustion and runaway climate change: we are on track to face all three in the next … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works, Our Culture / Ourselves, Preparing for Civilization's End | 17 Comments

Articulating Our Agreements With Each Other

Before lawyers screwed everything up royally, human society operated largely on the basis of agreements. Many of these were tacit, but some were explicit, often marked by ceremony. Economies were initially sharing economies, built on trust. Currencies were later introduced, … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works | 2 Comments

Embracing Complexity: Seeking Appreciation Instead of ‘Understanding’

NASA depiction of Earth’s night sky in 3.75B years when the Milky Way and Andromeda galaxies are colliding The thing that humans most hate about complexity is that it’s infinite: it can never be fully understood. And because of that, … Continue reading

Posted in How the World Really Works | 4 Comments