Heart of the Art

To the Heart of Living Systems



Cesar Hidalgo: Why Information Grows

Our cities are such pockets where information grows, but they are not all the same. For every Silicon Valley, Tokyo, and London, there are dozens of places with underdeveloped economies. Why does the US economy outstrip Brazil’s, and Brazil’s that of Chad? Why did the technology corridor along Boston’s Route 128 languish while Silicon Valley blossomed? In each case, the key is how people, companies, and the networks they form process information

Varela: Ethical Know-how-Action, Wisdom and Cognition

A short pamphlet on ethics based on Varela’s lecture series in Italy, here Varela brings together a mix of Western scientific thought with Eastern spirituality. One of the best readers on this topic you’ll find.

Gladwell: The Tipping Point

Amazon say: In this brilliant and original book, Malcolm Gladwell explains and analyses the ‘tipping point’, that magic moment when ideas, trends and social behaviour cross a threshold, tip and spread like wildfire. Taking a look behind the surface of… Continue Reading →

Aldo Leopold: A Sand County Almanac

A Sand County Almanac, first published in 1949, a year after its author’s death, is one of the most influential books about the natural world ever published. It helped to transform what had been an essentially conservative, utilitarian conservation movement into the first stirrings of an ecologically centred green movement in the west.

A General Theory of Love- Lewis, Amini, Lannon

Explaining how relationships function, how parents shape their child’s developing self, how psychotherapy really works, and how our society dangerously flouts essential emotional laws, this is a work of rare passion and eloquence that will forever change the way you think about human intimacy.

The Art of Change Making

People have always studied and reflected on how social activity works, how anything gets to happen. Our current management model that found its epitome in ‘New Public Management’ is only one way to get things done. Its widespread integration into public services simply keeps them running as they are, perhaps necessary but certainly not sufficient to deal with a changing world. In The Art of Change Making we have brought together over 70 of these so people can see them, explore them and use them.

Pico Iyer: The Art of Stillness

The place that travel writer Pico Iyer would most like to go? Nowhere. In a counterintuitive and lyrical meditation, Iyer takes a look at the incredible insight that comes with taking time for stillness.

Daniel Miller: The Comfort of Things

How do people live their lives? What are the things that matter? This anthropological study of a South London street is a warm insight on humanity.

Christopher Alexander: The Timeless Way of Building

Alexander finds a ‘pattern language’ in buildings from across locations and cultures. Wha is the pattern language for other forms of human endeavour? What is its relationship to emergence?

William Isaacs: Dialogue and the Art of Thinking Together

Like David Bohm and others, Isaacs studies how we can create generative conversations where something genuinely new emerges from the space between us.

Fred Kaplan: The Insurgents

Kaplan studies the US response to dealing with insurgents and how US policy was shaped by people who followed those very principles themselves. Adaptive change and insurgency are close bedfellows.

Peter Senge: The Fifth Discipline

Peter Senge, founder and director of the Society for Organisational Learning and senior lecturer at MIT, has found the means of creating a ‘learning organisation’. In The Fifth Discipline, he draws the blueprints for an organisation where people expand their capacity to create the results they truly desire, where new and expansive patterns of thinking are nutured, where collective aspiration is set free, and where people are continually learning together.

McGilchrist: The Master and his Emissary

A fascinating exploration of the differences between the brain’s right and left hemispheres and their effects on society, history and culture. Why is the brain divided?

Fritjof Capra- The Turning Point: Science, Society, and the Rising Culture

The classic introduction for seeing the world as a whole system from one of the true thinkers, physicist Fritjof Capra. Fritjof worked with Myron Rogers and Margaret Wheatley on a series of investigations into what working with living systems really… Continue Reading →

Chris Arygris- Integrating The Individual And The organisation

Still an all-time classic on the relationships between self and  groups in organisational settings. Amazon Say: The emphasis on organizational change in the corporate life of recent years-including job redesign, autonomous groups, high performance work systems, and the redesign of control… Continue Reading →

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