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The Power of Collective Wisdom: And the Trap of Collective Folly

3.76  ·  Rating Details ·  29 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Stories and historical examples throughout this work serve to illustrate how collective wisdom is emerging in a range of settings and how, if accessed, this collective knowing can create extraordinary results.
ebook, 239 pages
Published October 1st 2009 by Berrett-Koehler Publishers (first published 2009)
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Leland Beaumont
Dec 16, 2012 Leland Beaumont rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hang together or hang separately!

What happens when a group faces a difficult problem? In some circumstances the group arrives at an extraordinary solution that was unknown to any individual at the start of the deliberations. In other cases the group settles on a decision that becomes tragic, even though many in the group thought better of it. What are the conditions that can allow a group to access their combined wisdom? How can we connect with each other and tap into our cocreative abilities?
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Kim
May 26, 2016 Kim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

Wonderful book. It's also oddly similar to my own book, Getting Messy. We must have been breathing the same molecules from the collective unconscious or something...

It's really great to read someone else write about this stuff though, and it makes me happy and excited that I'm in this field. I think the most interesting part of the book for me was learning about Jacob Needleman's belief that the group is the new "art form" of the future. I've always been most interested in the creative process o

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Nancy
Jan 20, 2014 Nancy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in advance of a workshop I am attending knowing that this book informed the workshop presenter. Thought it would be good to learn more about the concept through reading. Learned lots and wish this book had been out when I took Community Work back in the 1980s.

I am in a bit of a lull at the moment in terms of collective action, but am feeling pulled back into the group effort. There is a concise and helpful This book at a glance section to start. I liked this line regarding the f
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Roberta
Sep 20, 2014 Roberta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended by Shauna. Very profound. I can see many personal and wider ways to apply the principles in this book.

Still loving this book. Would love to discuss it with a group. Along with The Abundant Community: Awakening the Power of Families and Neighborhoods.
Lisa
Oct 04, 2015 Lisa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book wasn't actually what I thought it was going to be, but it was good. I'm starting to lead a group that is wounded and fractured and was looking for some help. This was a good book and I liked it. I don't know that I got a ton of practical guidance, but I recommend it just from a philosophical standpoint.
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“All learning arises through doing, but the most frequent problem is the “learning,” not the “doing.” Our organizations and societies are full of doing but deficient in learning. I believe there is no more telling indicator of the absence of collective wisdom than the inability to learn as we go. It is characterized by rigidness and dogma. It is characterized by low trust and the inability to talk about difficult subjects where people must recognize their shortfalls. It is characterized by maintaining a façade of confidence and competence that masks insecurity and fear of failure. Conversely, collective wisdom is most evident in quiet confidence that our “not knowing” is our strength, that the ability to ask deep questions is more important than offering superficial answers— and that imagination, commitment, patience and openness, and trust in one another will consistently trump IQ over the long haul.” 1 likes
“To be foolish is human, but the capacity to choose between acts leading to folly or to wisdom is a uniquely human gift.” 0 likes
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