October 19 is the forty-first meeting for Systems Thinking Ontario. The registration will be on Eventbrite.

Polyscopy: A Way to Systemic Change

Our advanced scientific knowledge of the natural world, together with our sophisticated technologies, tend to embolden our conviction that we can solve virtually any problem -  and will eventually address the major environmental and other global challenges on the horizon. On the other hand, as Einstein warns us: "We can not solve our problems with the same level of thinking that created them". If our very way of thinking and seeing the world is indeed the barrier to overcoming "time-sensitive" global challenges, then more data, more scientific theory and more technology - in the tradition of the first enlightenment - may not be sufficient to the task. Perhaps our culture’s informing practices - the systems through which, together, we construct, experience, share and evolve our worldviews are a critical limitation. Perhaps existing systems of knowledge building and social learning are so embedded in the current worldview that they are incapable of offering us the level of perspective required to see over the horizon in time to chart a path through these emerging "wicked problems". So, can we foster an "enlightenment-like change" in the very way in which we construct, conceive of, transmit and evolve knowledge.

Polyscopy proposes to chart paths towards generating more enlightened worldviews - better informed and more richly conceived and expressed worldviews, collaboratively constructed, transmittable and evolving across our cultures, subcultures and society.  Polyscopy is a prototype for a new approach to communication. It seeks to enable systemic change by creating a high level view of fundamental pieces of knowledge, so called, "golden insights", that are too often discarded because they do not "fit in" to the prevailing worldview. Instead of trying to fit information and communication “bits and pieces” into an existing worldview, Polyscopy is a way of combining the myriad pieces of knowledge together with the myriad perspectives and existing worldviews to build and communicate a whole new gestalt - perhaps the seeds of the future worldview that will allow us to navigate over the obstacle about which Einstein cautions us.

 Presenter: Fredrik Eive Refsli, Kristiania University College, Oslo, Norway


Suggested pre-reading: 


Participants should not feel limited to this suggested pre-reading, but should recognize that other attendees may have not read, or are reading differently, that content.


Time Activity Role(s)
6:15 Self-introductions (15 seconds each)
  • Who am I?
  • Which affiliations do I have that might be relevant to systems thinking?
  • How did I come to systems thinking?
Convenor: TBD
6:30 Discussion (with pre-readings as an entry point)
  • Dialog aimed at appreciatingPolyscopy's scope and focus
  • Can Polyscopy advance society's capacity to overcome the kinds of challenges on the horizon?
  • Can Polyscopy be improved to deliver more value or more quickly on its promise?
Presenter:  Fredrik Eive Refsli
Observer(s):  TBD
7:45 Double loop learning: Revisions in meeting format? Suggestions welcomed
8:00 Adjourn
  • Walk to Baldwin Street (north on McCaul Street, 0.5 km, (the pattern has been for Hana Korea, which is quiet enough to talk)
  • Continue discussion over dinner and/or drinks.
No host

Post-meeting artifacts

Bloggers are encouraged to write about their learning and experiences at the meeting. Links will be added to this page.