Jenny Andersson is my guest today on Inside Ideas. A regenerative strategist, facilitator and educator, she harnesses the power of the collective intelligence of organisations and communities to help them create the futures they want.
The power of the collective intelligence is always going to be better and more powerful than the knowledge of individuals.
“The regenerative field incorporates anthropology, deep ecology, developmental psychology, developmental biology – and many more than that, which have kind of connected and come together to create a new field of thinking that at its heart, its core, is living systems thinking,” Andersson said. “How do we design economies, or places, or businesses or whatever, as if we were living inside a living system? There are many fields that add up to come together to do that, there’s biomimicry, doughnut economics, and lots of different contributors that make up that field.”
The founder of Really Regenerative CIC, Andersson is passionate about bridging the gap that has been allowed to grow between humanity and nature, and believes the culture of competition is the wrong model for achieving progress.
“Nature has at least six different models of relationship, one of which is competition – not the most dominant form of relationship that you will find in a living system. Actually, the most dominant form of relationship in living systems is mutualism in its many different forms,” she said. “But we grabbed hold of competition as a model for designing the world and it’s incredibly prevalent everywhere you look. Why aren’t we making progress, why aren’t things changing? It is that incredibly deep belief in a model of competition, of having to climb to the top, being the best, being the expert, that takes a hell of a lot of unpicking.”
To change things, Andersson says we must first think differently.
“Why do we not redesign our economies to economies that create the conditions for life, that are like living systems? One is fear – because we just don’t know how to do that. The second is the failure of imagination, because we have spent so much of our time being taught what to think, when to think it, what to do, how to become an expert – there is a lack of capacity to think for ourselves.”
Andersson added: “We need to really lift up the capacity to think from scratch for ourselves, not to rely on the thinking that is in front of us. People love models; people love certification programmes; people love best practice, because that takes away the hard work of thinking for yourself. And because we believe that there are other people who are experts out there that know how things should be done, so we’re just going to follow how those things should be done. But the truth is, if you’re dealing with complex systems – and we are, that the power of the collective intelligence is always going to be better and more powerful than the knowledge of individuals.”
I am delighted to welcome Jenny onto the show to learn more about how we can better use this power to benefit people and the planet.