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You think that because you understand “one” that you must therefore understand “two” because one and one make two. But you forget that you must also understand “and.”

- Sufi teaching story

 

The things happening around us stop making sense beyond a point. Why suddenly things start to fall apart? Why things are not going the way they should? Be it office, personal life or the life around us in general. What if, you can decode it? Make sense of what is happening and why it is happening? If yes, what will you do? This thought in itself is empowering. Ability to see, understand and maneuver what is happening around us may be one of the most powerful thing. This is the power of System Thinking.

 

Currently, System Thinking is offered as a complicated course revolving around definitions, theories, jargon and tools. From creating predictive models to improving the existing systems these tools, theories and jargon find wide range of applications. However, they are not as complicated as they seem. Once we demystify system thinking we realize that these tools are the building blocks of any organization, culture and society. We realize that we all have been interacting with systems from the day we were conceived and will continue to do so till the day we die. And in this interaction we have been using these tools effectively. This is what this program aims to do.

 

Vasudhinity has designed a month long System Thinking collaborative program which aims to demystify the complicated world of system thinking. Together we will explore and learn how to interact with those complicated webs, graphs, charts of the system’s world. The participants, through mutual learning, will learn how to “SEE” a system around themselves, be it office, home or your inner self. The program will rely on the creative thinking, critical thinking, and problem solving abilities of participants to expedite the learning process. Through the one month long journey we will de clutter the space of system thinking with a hope to motivate participants to explore the deeper philosophies that govern the system thinking.

 

By the end of the program participants will be able to

1. See a System

2. Map a System

3. Engage with the System

 

The concepts of system thinking can be implemented across the field of strategy development, team management, streamlining project implementation and above all self-development. So if you are intrigued by the idea of understanding what is happening around you and why it is happening? This is the program for you.

 

It is important to note that program will not be in the traditional teaching format. Rather the program will be guided through meditations, readings, movies, talks, projects, simulations, reflections and discussions. Individuals have to complete the weekly readings and come prepared for the sessions.

 

It is advised that one invests 90-120 mins on daily basis for reading, watching the video etc. This will not only help improve individual’s own learning but will also help us as a group.

 

Disclaimer: Please do not expect to have any expert or professional of System thinking to be with us during the online gatherings. We shall be on our own, learning from each other while trying to apply our common sense to de-mystify the world of system thinking.

BOOK

Thinking in Systems : A primer by Donella Meadows

Meadows’ Thinking in Systems, is a concise and crucial book offering insight for problem solving on scales ranging from the personal to the global. Edited by the Sustainability Institute’s Diana Wright, this essential primer brings systems thinking out of the realm of computers and equations and into the tangible world, showing readers how to develop the systems-thinking skills that thought leaders across the globe consider critical for 21st-century life.

 

Some of the biggest problems facing the world—war, hunger, poverty, and environmental degradation—are essentially system failures. They cannot be solved by fixing one piece in isolation from the others, because even seemingly minor details have enormous power to undermine the best efforts of too-narrow thinking.

 

While readers will learn the conceptual tools and methods of systems thinking, the heart of the book is grander than methodology. Donella Meadows was known as much for nurturing positive outcomes as she was for delving into the science behind global dilemmas. She reminds readers to pay attention to what is important, not just what is quantifiable, to stay humble, and to stay a learner.

 

In a world growing ever more complicated, crowded, and interdependent, Thinking in Systems helps readers avoid confusion and helplessness, the first step toward finding proactive and effective solutions.

Other course material includes movies, talks and videos. These will be shared as and when needed.

THE PROCESS AND TIMELINE

Dates: Saturday, May 29th, 2021 – Sunday, Jul 19th, 2021

We shall meet 3 times in a week, once for short session (45-60 Mins; Thursday) and twice for long sessions (90- 120 Mins; Saturday and Sundays).

· Sunday sessions: will be the introductory sessions to a particular concept which will be followed by a week of resource exploration which will include readings, movies and talks.

· Thursday Sessions: will be interactive sessions for initial reflections and leanings, first round of sharing etc.

· Saturday Sessions: In these sessions we will deep dive into the concept with the help of carefully designed group activities and simulations.

· Concluding Session: In this sessions all participants will be sharing their projects with the group.

· Break: We will have a break in weekend sessions after 3/4weeks (collective call to be taken by the group)

The timing of the sessions will be as follows

· Thursdays: 7 – 8 pm

· Saturdays & Sundays: 7 – 9 pm

 

It is advised that one invests 90-120 mins on daily basis for reading, watching the video etc. This will not only help improve individual’s own learning but will also help us as a group.

BATCH SIZE

Around 20-25 participants. We wish to a have a small group with more time per participant.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA

Anyone- of any age, gender, nationality, background, work experience- is invited to participate in this program as we wish to have as much diversity as possible. All we would require from our side is for you to have an interest for reading books, a spark to find a new way of living and an intention to dive deeper into the possibilities of re-imagining the design of our present economy.

APPLICATION PROCESS

Kindly use this link to fill the application form. We may choose to speak to you over phone before finalizing your participation in this program.

FINANCIALS

The suggested range of contribution is Rs 5,000- Rs 12,000. The participants are encouraged to contribute as per their heart and financial situation. The ones who are capable of contributing on higher side are encouraged to do so, as we also wish to accommodate a few individuals who are not in a position to contribute financially. The charges cover facilitation for all 49 days, which include 19 mandatory virtual sessions as mentioned in the schedule.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQs)

1. Can I skip some online sessions?
We would strongly suggest you to not skip any mandatory session (20 in total; 6 Short + 13 long sessions + 1 introductory session) as these sessions shall build upon each other. However, it would be optional for you to participate in any additional session that may come up during to the course of the program.

2. Will the recordings of the sessions be available?
No, the recordings shall not be available for later review. Kindly be present and fully attentive during the sessions.

3. Can I join the program in between say after a week from the beginning or so?
No, as all the modules of this program build upon each other, it would not be possible for you to join this program in between.

4. Will you buy the books/resources on my behalf?
No, we shall provide you with the soft copies of the books/resources from our side. If you prefer to have physical copies of these books for reading, we would encourage you to kindly buy the books on your own.

5. If there are only three sessions per week, how am I supposed to give 60 minutes per day to this program?
The online sessions are more about sharing and learning from each other’s reflections. You would be required to go through the whole books/resources on your own by devoting dedicated time for the same on daily basis. Also, kindly note that you are encouraged to read slowly and spend a lot more time doing self-reflection.

6. Can the contribution made be refunded?

We understand that due to various reasons the participant my wish to drop out of the sessions. Under such circumstances we do provide refund based on our refund policy.

FACILITATOR'S PROFILE

Rahul Garg

 

Rahul Garg is development sector consultant and a policy analyst.

 

He has over 10 years of experience in Corporate and Development Sector. During the first 5 years of his career he worked with a Fortune 500 automotive company and his clients included all leading auto companies including Daimler Group, Ford, Mahindra, TATA, Maruti etc. In last 6 years he has worked with NGOs, Budget Private Schools and Development sector consulting firms. During this time he has consulted various NGOs, state and center governments in developing CSR and project implementation strategies. He has also supported organizations in strengthening their systems and processes. Throughout this journey he learnt various tools and technologies to support his consultations.

Since COVID he has shifted back to his hometown in the foothills of Himalayas, Haridwar and has been continuing his research and consultations. In last 8 months he has delved deeper into the economic theories that have governed the society at large through various dialogs including 'Naya Daur Nayi Kalpana'. Apart from his consultations, to continue his spirit of giving back to the society, he has been teaching economically backward children who are unable to access the online classes for free.

 

Rahul is an avid reader and loves to play Sudoku. He is also on a journey towards sustainable living through the practice of "aparigraha" and limiting his materialistic possessions.