Is it a choice between Big Brother watching you and you watching Big Brother?

Publicerat 19 January 2018

The TED-talk recommendation of today is about data and how it can be used. In a nutshell, it’s a choice between Big Brother watching you and you watching Big Brother. Susan Etlinger want us to not become passive consumers of data and technology. She believe that we shape the role it plays in our lives and the way we make meaning from it, but to do that, we have to pay as much attention to how we think as how we code.

For example analyzing big data from language. We must remind ours selves that language is created by people, and people are messy and we’re complex and we use metaphors and slang and jargon and we do this 24/7 in many, many languages,and then as soon as we figure it out, we change it up.

Does a set of data make you feel more comfortable? More successful? Then your interpretation of it is likely wrong. In a surprisingly moving talk, Susan Etlinger explains why, as we receive more and more data, we need to deepen our critical thinking skills. Because it’s hard to move beyond counting things to really understanding them.

Does collecting more data lead to better decision-making?

Publicerat 12 January 2018

Does collecting more data lead to better decision-making? Competitive, data-savvy companies like Amazon, Google and Netflix have learned that data analysis alone doesn’t always produce optimum results. In this TED talk, data scientist Sebastian Wernicke breaks down what goes wrong when we make decisions based purely on data – and suggests a brainier way to use it.

I’ve noticed a sort of pattern or kind of rule, if you will, about the difference between successful decision-making with data and unsuccessful decision-making, and I find this a pattern worth sharing…

Understanding and acting on challenge

Publicerat 9 January 2018

Understanding a challenge and acting on it is two different things. How can we act today to enable the company to be prosperous in the future?

The three voices that need to be in the same room
  • The different voices involved can be highly engaged, all wanting to add their perspective. You have the voice of today, the manager(s) responsible for delivering todays result that are more concerned with managing the existing, maximizing returns and keeping the organization going efficiently and effectively.
  • Then you have the second voice, the voice of the entrepreneur, the one eager to experiment, try out new things, explore and extend, accepting some aspects will not work
  • Last we have the third voice, of the aspirant, who is looking to build a different vision, believing in different, more pioneering ways and visualiz things in their ‘mind’s eye’, far more aspirational, that can seemingly on first ‘take’ look to be totally incompatible to the reality of today.

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Efter #metoo, jämställdhet inom svensk industri

Publicerat 5 January 2018

Hur ser villkoren ut för kvinnor och män inom industriföretag? Och kan villkoren variera beroende på om du är chef eller verkstadsarbetare?

Efter #metoo kan vi alla behöva tänka till kring villkoren i vår egen organisation och hur vi kan bidra med att skapa ett klimat där alla trivs och kan leverera på topp. Anna Wahl, professor i genus, organisation och ledning samt vice rektor för jämställdhet och värdegrund på KTH ger tips om en bok vi alla kan läsa för att bredda våra perspektiv.  Boktipset är “Män har varit här längst” av Sophie Linghag och Anna Wahl och den undersöker jämställdhet inom svensk industri.

Diskussionen i boken centreras kring tre huvudsakliga teman: relationen mellan kompetens och kön, de könsmärkta villkoren för chefskap samt konsekvenser av homosocial kultur i organisationer. Inom dessa tre områden reproduceras ofta ojämställdhet och det är således här vi finner öppningar för ett konstruktivt jämställdhetsarbete.

På ett övergripande plan bidrar boken med att visa hur jämställdhetsarbete kan driva utveckling och förnyelse i organisationer. Men den illustrerar också jämställdhetsarbetets komplexitet genom en väl underbyggd organisationsanalys.

Nyårstips – läsning till det nya året!

Publicerat 31 December 2017

Under december månad har vi gett er våra bästa lästips. Nu när det nya året har inletts och de första dagarna på året brukar vara lite lugnare så rekommenderar vi er att avsätta lite tid för egen reflektion. Ett sätt är att välja ut någon av de böcker vi tipsat om för att få påfyllning med nya idéer för att kunna utveckla både er själva och era bolag under det kommandet året. Idag tipsar vi om boken Originals skriven av Adam Grant.

Grant tar avstamp i forskning och studier och diskuterar kring innovation och ledarskap. Man kan bland annat läsa hur valet av web-browser indikerar hur innovativ du är, att prokrastinering kan leda till ökad kreativitet, att kreativa uttryck inom exempelvis konst och kultur kan öka innovationsförmågan inom andra fält, var i en beslutshierarki innovation kan ske och hur man kan jobba med och mot byråkrati och traditioner.

Om ni uppger kampanjkoden “KTHnyår”  får ni köpa boken med 18% rabatt på Bokus. Rabatten gäller 31/12-6/1.

Trevlig läsning och gott nytt år önskar vi på KTH Executive School er alla!

Understanding and acting on challenge

Publicerat 26 December 2017

Understanding a challenge and acting on it is two different things. How can we act today to enable the company to be prosperous in the future? As written about in this blog post, the three horizon methodology can be a good tool to use.

 

The three voices that need to be in the same room
  • The different voices involved can be highly engaged, all wanting to add their perspective. You have the voice of today, the manager(s) responsible for delivering todays result that are more concerned with managing the existing, maximizing returns and keeping the organization going efficiently and effectively.
  • Then you have the second voice, the voice of the entrepreneur, the one eager to experiment, try out new things, explore and extend, accepting some aspects will not work
  • Last we have the third voice, of the aspirant, who is looking to build a different vision, believing in different, more pioneering ways and visualiz things in their ‘mind’s eye’, far more aspirational, that can seemingly on first ‘take’ look to be totally incompatible to the reality of today.

It is the combination of these different three voices that need to come together and frame the innovation journey by using the three horizons framework.

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Julläsning “Everybody Lies”

Publicerat 24 December 2017

Alla ljuger, till vänner, partners, läkare och konsumentundersökningar – och till sig själva. I sina internetsökningar för vad de tycker, har problem med och vill ha mer av.

Seth Stephens-Davidowitz, är en ekonom och tidigare Google anställd som har skrivit en mycket spännande bok – Everybody lies om hur man kan hitta sanningen med hjälp av information tillgänglig på internet och AI algoritmer. God jul och trevlig läsning!

Water scarcity on islands: how to stage and navigate collective learning

Publicerat 19 December 2017

There I was on the island Vis far out in the Croatian archipelago, surrounded by beautiful turquoise water to participate in a workshop about water shortage on small European islands arranged by the Water Saving Challenge Project. Once again the same ingredients; a wickedproblem, a diverse group of knowledgeable actors and the tension between holistic ambitions, and specific and localized solutions – they seem to attract my attention. Collaboration, cross-sectoral dialogues and broad participation are argued for as key measurements in almost all sustainable development policies. This seems logical given that the present complex challenges require combination of a diversity of knowledge, and multi-scale and multi-sector approaches. However, I think we have all been participating in too many workshops, discussing challenges, barriers and potentials, with a nagging feeling that it is not enough for the needed societal  transformation. I was curious to find out if the workshop at Vis could be different.

The setting and process leadership are keys for successful collaboration and learning

Shortage of water is one symptom of our inability to handle water as a wicked problem, which has become an everyday reality for the inhabitants on many small islands. The task for the group of islanders gathering on Vis in September was to identify strategies to re-match water use with water availability but without losing sight of other important values such as a viable tourism providing jobs and income or local food production. What new ways of thinking, organizing and doing are needed to transform the water governance and how can the islands help each other?

Our process leader Christian Pleijel from the Kökar Island in Åland, works at KTH Executive School and is also the vice president of the European Small Islands Federation, used two tools to facilitate the discussions. The Ishikawa fish bone is designed to identify causes building up to a certain effect – in our case to identify all aspects of importance to achieve a water saving effect. The fishbone was combined with a method for parallel thinking by the use of six thinking hats developed by Edward de Bono. The thinking hats is a way to look at a certain issue from one direction at a time – the white hat as fact based and neutral, the red hat emotional, the black hat cautious, the yellow hat optimistic, the green hat creative and the blue hat organization. I had not before experienced these tools and looked forward to learn more about their potential.

However, what I soon discovered is that these are just yet another set of tools and with many similarities with tools that I have used or experienced in various collaborative processes before. It is not the tools that make a workshop contributing to real learning and change, it is the setting in which they are operationalised. What made this workshop a collective learning about island water saving was the stage, the actors and the process leader that used the tools.

The stage was very carefully designed based on extensive field studies on each of the eight islands represented. These field trips were as much about investigating the present water situation on respective island, as they were about establishing relationships and building trust that enabled the islanders’ engagement in the knowledge exchange and their support of a collective learning community. Furthermore, the stage is not just about what happens in the sessions which usually have a clear structure, roles and goals, but what happens in-between the sessions, during field-trips, coffee breaks and dinners. This is when new relationships are established that are necessary for future remote collaborations to be successful.

The importance of the space between sessions in a workshop. This is when relationships are built and long term learning partnership can start. A much appreciated visit to the Vis Island water center.

The actors also need to trust the process leader and each other in order to fully contribute to the joint process – the workshop play. Christian is himself an islander with personal experiences about what it means, combined with a long career working with people, leadership, innovations and businesses. In order to address wicked problems a diverse set of knowledge needs to be combined, demanding the process lead to be like a chameleon when interacting with this diversity. Like a director of a play you need to know when to start, stop, go back, fast forwarding by tweaking the tools so they are as purposeful as possible in relation to the process dynamic.

In the end fish bones covering many aspects of the water saving challenges on each island was drawn and the participants had been cautious, creative and emotional along the way with a strong foundation in facts and possible interventions in terms of governance. But, most importantly it was decided that this workshop was just the beginning of a more long-term exchange between the islands and that they will become learning labs to support a larger network of islands in the future.

What I bring with me from the three days with great islanders from all over Europe is that a workshop that enable not just knowledge exchange but real learning, needs to be carefully designed as part of a larger setting and requires deep skills in how to set a stage, encourage actors and use the right tools in the right moment. This might be common sense in other sectors but within sustainable development there is a clear need to highlight and develop skills in process design, leadership and facilitation so that we can move away from disappointing efforts of collaboration into meetings that enable societal transformation.

/Sara Borgström
Assistant Professor, Strategic Sustainability Studies
KTH Royal Institute of Technology

Read more about this project linked to KTH and KTH Executive School  here.
Original the blogpost was published at kth.se.

Samlade boktips inför jul och starten på det nya året

Publicerat 18 December 2017

Under december månad tipsar vi om våra favoritböcker som vi tror kan ge er nya tankar inför det nya året. Vi vet att många passar på att läsa böcker och ta in ny information när det lugnar ner sig i mellandagarna och under de första dagarna på det nya året. Vi ger er därför tips på de böcker vi tycker ni ska spana in eller som kan fungera som bra julklappar till andra.

  1. Superintelligence,  av Nick Boström.
  2. Monetizing Innovation, av Madhavan Ramanujam och Georg Tacke.
  3. Liv 3,0, av Max Tegmark (kan köpas med med rabatt för 175kr fram till 23/12 om man uppger  “KTH3advent” i kassan hos Bokus).

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Boktips på tredje advent!

Publicerat 17 December 2017

Boktipset den tredje advent kommer från Staffan Movin, vår programdirektör för Infra Service programmet. Idag tipsar vi om Liv 3.0 skriven av Max Tegmark. Boken tar upp att Artificiell intelligens, AI, är inte längre science fiction. Den är ett faktum och den förändrar våra liv och vårt samhälle, men hur och bör vi vara oroliga?

Vill du köpa den till rabatterat pris (175 kr) använd koden “KTH3advent” i kassan om du handlar boken på Bokus. Koden gäller fram till den 23/12.