Sapere Aude – Dare to know

I came across this phrase during my recent reading of William Davies’ The Happiness Industry. Kant claimed that it captured the entire spirit of The Enlightment and that we, as a people, could engage in intellectual self-liberation through reason.

We dig this at interstitio, as that’s kind of our founding ‘jam’ (if you will). That through daring to know: with data, hypothesis elucidation, crystal clear experimental design and execution, and rigorous evaluation – that you’ll know. You’ll have looked into the problem at hand, and like it or not, have a better understanding of its bounds, or the things you might be able to say or not. And, armed with this, move forward.

Always forward as Luke Cage would say.

Anyway, the summer has whipped by and our blog has sat fallow. We’ve not been resting on our laurels though, here’s a whip-quick summary of some of our recent highlights:

  • In collaboration with Michelle Shevin (currently a Strategic Technology Fellow at the Ford Foundation) we finished both a formal and informal treatment of our assertion that organizations are indeed complex social (wicked) problems.
  • We also convened, again with Michelle, a small group of NYC Super Achievers who came together at the end of August, at our friends SYPartners amazing NYC office to think through the ramifications of ‘Wicked as the New Normal’. As fun as it is to notice that organizations are wicked problems, what now? What does that mean, and what do we do with that information?
  • Our long term collaborator (Prof. Brian Rubineau, McGill University) presented a paper at the 2017 American Sociological Association on some recent work involving trait prediction through email data and brokerage and homophily. As an aside, trait prediction is of great interest at the moment, have a look at this weeks’ Economist as they take a look at the ‘facial-industrial complex’ for instance.

We also spent a whole bunch of time traveling, reading, and sailing. Oh, and we bought a goldfish. Meet Syrup.

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