Yesterday the book of Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen was delivered to our door. ” The New Digital Age – Reshaping the Future of People, Nations and Business ” . I must admit it is great, since it for the first time explains clearly the huge impact mobile & internet communication recently has on society, economics and political powers.
So it is not on the IT/ Communication/ Media technology that people (should, could) use but on what that use does to individual lives and to groups of people. To observe and report on this has been my hobby too, often to digi-ignorant audiences, in my eyes so uniformed that they may never know what I am talking about. No bother, their children do, and billions of others all over the world.
In the book one very remarkable concept is repeated on many pages: the importance of CONNECTIVITY. I agree, that is what binds people together so they can collaborate and co-create value and work. It is therefore I can announce that it is an honor and pleasure to give a lecture about this subject of how connectivity can be harnessed in a new type of organization in Brussels, Belgium, Europe coming Friday afternoon May, 3rd, 2013.
This lecture was prepared together with Sara C. Wedeman, PhD, Behavioral Economics Consulting Group LLC; Philadelphia, PA, USA. With thanks to Lisa Sterling and Jeffrey Sterling (Cascadia) for their encouragement and generous support.
(building B, level 3, From the elevator take the long corridor to the right, to its end), on the VUB Campus Etterbeek (Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels), Free entrance: everybody welcome!
Jaap van Till
(Ir. J.W. Jaap van Till prof. emeritus network infrastructures; chief scientist Tildro Research B.V., NL)
There are an estimated 6 billion cellphones and smartphones in use worldwide and about 3 billion people have fixed or mobile Internet access. This results in a massive amount of connections between people which has an impact on their life and work and the power they can summon together to get things organized and done. This baffles traditional business types and politicians who notice that their vertically layered closed hierarchies can no longer cope with complex environments and are outpaced and outsmarted by online P2P horizontally interconnected groups of people, who co-create and learn together. Open organizations with high quality external co The research question this lecture tries to help answer is: “How are such wired groups structured and how can they function as one fast responding organism which can scale up without central coordination and without central leadership?” After the urgency for horizontalized organization and value chains is shown as one of the key to come out of the economic crisis, the key ingredients for the line of thought are found in nature. All ‘Living Systems’ , including humans and groups of humans, can be described as functioning using 20 vital subsystems handling material, energy and information. Recent discoveries in analysis of how the human brain may work based for a big part on MRI scanning measurements and neurobiology & neuropsychology show that handling Patterns and matching those with memory and expectations is basic. You can look with your probably imperfect eyes but you see with the lenses in your brain. You can listen with your ears but you hear with your brain and combine your thinking with other information patterns there. These recent findings can be transposed on brain-like structures of connected people using the Telescope Metaphor which can be extended into a structure which processes images in parallel based on orthogonal transforms. This is pre-correlation which simplifies matching. This caters for the fact that with such Lens – holography like structures everybody can see the whole picture and can contribute to improvement of it and by combining and synergy, help to develop emergent models for decentral consensus, vision & knowledge sharing, constructive solutions and actions. Maybe we will find that swarms of bees and colonies of billions of bacteria have used since millions of years the same connection structures to organize collective intelligent collaboration, so why don’t we do that too using telecom- and computer networks?
This recently started research, which has combined a number of well known scientific findings, has important consequences for effective and more flexible organizations, new internet social media services and new political structures connecting independent people& groups and the institutions needed in the networked civil society and post-transition co-creative economies. Not only can such connected group Weavelet react very fast to unexpected situations, it is resilient to failing nodes and links and it can learn and cope with imperfections, incompleteness. To paraphrase an ancient philosopher: “So outside, so inside the human brain: the connections are the message”.
* Karl H. Pribram; “Holonomy and Structure in the Organization of Perception.’’ In: John M Nicholas (Hrsg.): Images, Perception, and Knowledge.’’ 1977, S. 155–185.