Hawai’i’s Shared Futures By Vision Foresight Strategy

Thinking like nature

Good morning and Happy Valentine’s Day!  I haven’t posted the last couple of days just because the pace has picked up, and I didn’t have a good chance to sit down and write something coherent.  But it’s Saturday morning and while I’m contemplating the household chores that need to be done, I’m also mapping out the afternoon work that has to be finished, so it’s a good time to post a note.

Our nonprofit scenario project has some interesting concepts to wrestle with, largely around the idea of organizational and service innovation, with each linked quite explicitly to the challenge of acquiring the resources necessary to accomplish a mission in a time of severe budget reductions and funding loss.  I think we’re finding that it’s certainly not impossible to identify and acquire the resources that a local nonprofit needs, but that it does require some serious organizational soul-searching and some tough questions about clients, organizational ego, and a healthy dose of foresight.  The kind of innovative thinking that can find and align resources with the activities that produce outcomes is truly ‘out-of-the-box’, as in “don’t assume that Hawai’i needs another 50c(c)3 to add to the current list of like 7500 that are out there.”  If you’re really client-focused and mission-driven, then you should not assume that a traditional corporate nonprofit is the necessary vehicle for effecting social change.  Just one of the realizations emerging from the project.

This past week we also started discussions with another group about taking a serious big-picture look at the current and future healthcare system in Hawai’i, in all its illogical glory.  It looks like we’ll be having some prelimary discussions soon on additional local stakeholders, concrete outputs, and a timeframe.  Despite the current media focus on daily economic crisis reports, there are other major systems, such as healthcare, which are in serious need of structural change and strategic innovation.

And we came across an article on how a Duke University ecologist has been organizing discussions using ecosystems and adaptive organisms as models for analyzing issues like homeland security.  The professor, Rafe Sagarin, also co-edited a volume entitled: Natural Security: a Darwinian Approach to a Dangerous World.

Think about tomorrow.


Filed under: Nonprofit, scenarios, Security,

New week and strategic views

Aloha kakahiaka, people.  Today looks to be another relatively quiet day, but a couple of things will get completed and I’m feeling pretty good about the outputs for today.

For those of you interested in truly strategic thinking, one of the better thinkers to emerge in the literature in recent years is Thomas Barnett, a former worker in the national security arena and writer of provocative frameworks for understanding America’s role in global security and development.  His latest book is Great Powers: America and the World After Bush, and this morning he did a spot on Diane Rehm’s radio show on NPR.

The morning interview with Barnett:

Diane Rehm interview of Thomas Barnett

Think about tomorrow.

Filed under: Security

Identity, Culture, and Ethnocentrism

A recent New Scientist article looked at the issue of ethnic prejudice and explored the thoughts and work of a variety researchers. The article explored a variety of opinions that there is some inherent psychology or evolutionary factor that has produced the human predilection for ‘grouping’ each other. Some of the thought, though, pointed out that such tendencies would seem to be a very crude adaptive tool. The article seems to conclude that humans may have inherent grouping biases from a very young age which are not simply the effect of socialization, but also that humans can be quickly made to empathize with those ‘outside the group’ and see them as individuals and real ‘persons.’


  • Identity and Violence: The Illusion of Destiny. A recent book by the Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen, it explores the issue of singular vs. multiple identities and how the push for singular identity obscures paths to collectively beneficial futures.
  • Human Natures: Genes, Cultures, and the Human Prospect. A book Paul R. Ehrlich that explores the research and conclusions in evolution and biology to see the interdependence of biological and cultural evolution and the multiple ‘natures’ of homo sapiens.
  • The Responsibility to Protect: a recently articulated principle advocated for global relations.

Filed under: Identity, Security


Fingerprint authentication is revealed as the preferred method for security for a vast majority (70%) of citizens in Singapore and Malaysia, according to a recent Unisys survey. According to a ZDNet Asia article, factors such as convenience, security, and early socialization with more advanced identity cards than are used in the U.S., contribute to these citizens’ comfort and acceptance of the biometric systems.


Filed under: Security

Hawai’i: the Reboot

2 days. 200 innovators. A new future for Hawai'i.

The Hawai'i Futures Summit 2009 October 16 and 17, 2009


Vision Foresight Strategy

We work with organizations to anticipate strategic change and to craft the strategies that will shape their desired futures.

To learn more about how we can help you, visit www.kikilo.biz


Summit Net is the network for people who are concerned with the big picture, rule-changing possibilities for Hawai'i's futures.
Visit Hawai'i Futures Summit Network