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Regaining a new sense of well-being by design

Nelson, Harold (2020) Regaining a new sense of well-being by design. In: Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design (RSD9) 2020 Symposium, 9-17 Oct 2020, Ahmedabad, India.

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Official URL: https://rsdsymposium.org/


The COVID-19 virus has been the catalyst for disruptive pandemic changes around the world. Our norms are being forever changed. Our sense of well-being has been lost. New norms are needed now because a new normal is desired and necessary. It is a perilous game to play if the process of forming new norms is left to unfold by chance rather than intension.

The changes in play, that are transforming our norms, are not the result of human intention but hopefully, their subsequent consequences can be. Our challenge is thus: how will the norms that become reified be the ones we desire rather than the ones we get by happenstance? For any hope of assuring that the ones realized in the future are desirable – systemic design will be a necessary strategy to use.

There are two fundamental approaches to the future — reactive and proactive. A reactive approach ‘backs’ into the future. A proactive approach – a systemic design approach – ‘advances’ into the future. Navigating into a desired future will require new mindsets, knowledge sets, skill sets, and toolsets – new normals. Simply stated:

"We cannot solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them." – Albert Einstein

From a systemic design perspective, we can reframe Einstein’s admonition by asserting that navigating into a desired future, rather than backing away from an undesired present, requires a qualitatively different stance and approach from what was the norm just yesterday. Having done this we will be able to begin regaining a new sense of well-being.

Item Type: Conference/Workshop Item (Keynote)
Divisions: Faculty of Design
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 04 May 2022 19:09
Last Modified: 04 May 2022 19:09
URI: https://openresearch.ocadu.ca/id/eprint/3589

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