Tag Archives: spiral dynamics

Spiral Dynamics and MEMEnomics in Collaboration to Design the Next Global Financial Architecture 

Dr. Don E. Beck and I will be keynote speakers at the 75th Anniversary of the Bretton Woods Financial Conference this July which is taking place at the same center that held the original conference that changed the world. This invitation came about as the organizers of the conference, under the leadership of the late Bernard Lietaer, the co-designer of the Euro, studied my book MEMEnomics. The group then decided to gain a deeper understanding of Spiral Dynamics¬†by studying Dr. Beck‚Äôs original book on the theory.¬† I was fortunate enough to meet Bernard in Boulder, CO in the mid 2000’s when he attended an event led by Dr. Beck. Then as fate would have it, we met again in 2013 in New York as we shared the same media publicist that was promoting our respective books.

The theme of the upcoming conference is Economics at the intersection of Humanity, Technology, Ecology, Governance and Markets. Dr. Beck and I will be the opening speakers on the second full day of this In-conversation-with conference format. The organizers would like our opening (in their words) to be a showcase of Spiral Dynamic to prime participants to start thinking differently about economic systems.

There will be many prominent attendees and speakers  and many organizations represented that include: The IMF, New America, Poverty Action Lab, Council on Foreign Relations, The Buckminster Fuller Institute, National Geographic, CARE, The Nature Conservancy, MIT Innovation Lab, The Financial Times, The Schumacher Center, & The Institute for New Economic Thinking.

The Evolution of Bretton Woods

The original 1944 conference was organized by US President Franklin D. Roosevelt who invited delegates and heads of states from 44 different countries to create a post WWII economic and financial blueprint. John Maynard Keynes, the most prominent economists at the time was the master architect behind the conference that gave the world the current global financial and economic order. This was the event that gave birth to so many institutions born out of a new global paradigm on peaceful trade and development. It made the US the economic superpower it is today. It gave the world the International Monetary Fund and The World Bank, and made the US Dollar the de facto reserve currency for the world. It also gave us a preview of how a resilient Blue system (regulatory structure that understands economics) in government can direct economic policies and nudge a culture towards systemic prosperity by providing smart regulation that anticipates the Orange system’s (free market capitalism) every move and keeps its exploitation in check.

These values, which represent the Patriotic Prosperity Cycle in my book, were with us until the 1970’s when runaway inflation and  budget deficits made it impossible to keep the dollar pegged to the gold standard. That’s when President Nixon allowed the US currency to float and become a fiat currency backed only by the word of our government. The cycle entered the decline phase thereafter as Germany left the Bretton Woods Agreement, and the world was hit by the first Arab oil embargo. Its final entropy phase came during the Carter years when any and all measures of Keynesian economics failed to tame double-digit  inflation and runaway interest rates that were choking any meaningful economic growth.

As Keynesian economics waned in the US, it was replaced, with much fanfare by Monetarism, with Milton Friedman as its ideological father. This is the Orange economic phase I call the Only Money Matters Cycle in my work. Beginning with the Reagan presidency, the institutions created by Bretton Woods shifted from a trade, reconstruction, development and humanitarian mission, to mostly a banking function motivated by profit. Today these same institutions are the main reason why less developed countries remain in a perpetual downward spiral of debt that can never be repaid. (Click here to read my 2009 published piece  about the value systems structures that made this possible).

The push to develop the entire world into this peaceful commerce paradigm went into high gear under the Monetarist ideology and became instrumental in continuing the goal of ending wars against each other. But, as we came together to end wars through the virtues of free markets, and an insatiable appetite for consumption, we collectively and inadvertently waged a slow but deadly war against Mother Nature’s key ecosystems.

This will be the monumental challenge this conference needs to address. It seems that from the diverse list of attendees, speakers and the institutions  represented, this might just be the right place to start work on a new blueprint that reframes human activity as part of the planetary ecosystem. While the conference might not hold the same CAPI* the original conference did 75 years ago,  the hope is that it can inform leaders on the type of institutions we need to design to effectively address the existential threats we as a humanity have collectively created for ourselves and the planet.

Although the event itself is not open to the public, here’s the link to its website for more information. https://www.brettonwoods75.org/

*CAPI stands for Coalescence of Authority, Power and Influence. It’s is an advanced Spiral Dynamics concept adopted from the Adizes Institute. It’s presence as a representation of systemic stakeholders, is an essential ingredient in the design of Large-Scale transformational systems. ¬†

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VUCA SHMUCA, Would Someone Please Explain!

Many of us who are trying to understand the complexities of our emerging world might have run into the term VUCA, Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity.  At the organizational level,  The term describes the institutional forces permeating the atmosphere in which organizations struggle to perform. This new reality is made more difficult because the more  complex issues that drive decision-making and cultural norms. Too often these complex issues become entangled with maladaptive behaviors, which then give way to pathological corporate activities.

At the  Spiral Dynamics Summit on the Future, Dr. Darrell Gooden will highlight how the use of the value-systems framework has contributed to positive and productive change through  vMemetic replication. His presentation  will further explain how to sustain the gains in complex organizations by opening evolutionary pathways that allow healthy expressions of organizational Vmemes to emerge.

Accurate discernment of Vmemes codes in VUCA conditions prevents and resolves deep conflicts and its aftermath. Importantly, this work reveals that the leadership‚Äôs collective perceptions, and the nature of their manifested Vmemes (affirming or coercive) influence the organization‚Äôs culture, structure and systems. The work herein implies the probability of successfully infusing a complex enterprise atmosphere with affirmative stimuli depends on actions of ‚Äúpositive deviants‚ÄĚ and management‚Äôs ability to articulate a compelling case to change the cognitive map of the workforce.

Darrell Gooden began his work with the Spiral Dynamics Group and Dr. Don Beck in 1998. Darrell holds a PhD in Organizational Transformation from the Adizes Graduate School. He holds a Master of Science Degree in Technology Management from Pepperdine University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Management of Information Systems from the University of Redlands.

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Is Democracy Destined to Fail, or is it Exiting its Adolescent Stages?

Recent scientific surveys conducted by Dr. Bjarni Jonsson reveal that almost 97% of people around the world believe that Democracy is a good way to govern. The same survey also revealed that almost 80% of people worldwide seem to have a deep mistrust in the system and its philosophy. This figure is likely at an all-time high and is not expected to moderate anytime soon.

What accounts for this discrepancy and does scientific research support the findings that Democracy is a failed experiment that needs to be replaced by a different system for governance. Would an alternative system need to be more authoritarian and restrictive, or would a deeper level of engagement and trust in Democracy help improve the virtues of governance. What if more of the world population and its leaders gain a better understanding of what needs to be done to guard the precious virtues of ‚Äúgovernment by the people?‚ÄĚ What would be the mechanisms that need to be put in place to guarantee that all voices be heard?

Dr. Jonsson argues that Democracy as a fully functioning system for governance has not emerged yet, and what we call democracies is a big misunderstanding. He will be arguing his case for the different types of governance and what it will take for us to gain a better understanding of governing systems designed from the Emerging values of Humanity, what we in Spiral Dynamics call the values of the Second Tier.

Dr. Jonsson will present his views on these issues at the highly anticipated Spiral Dynamics Summit on the Future scheduled to take place in Dallas in April. Please click here for more details, and for a preview of the event. You can find out more about Dr. Jonsson and his work with the Icelandic National Assembly and the crucial role it played in reuniting Iceland after the devastating effects of the financial crisis of 2008. You can also look up Dr. Jonsson‚Äôs talks about ‚ÄúCrowd Visioning‚ÄĚ on TEDx Stage.

“The primary focus of the Summit is to bring together the brightest global minds to help us better understand chaos and change in these times of uncertainty.”¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†¬†

                                                                                                                    Dr. Don E. Beck

 

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