Collective wisdom refers to knowledge and insight gained through group and community interaction. At a deeper level, however, it is about our living connection to each other and the interdependence we share in our neighborhoods, organizations, and world community.
Based on nine years of research The Power of Collective Wisdom shows how we can reliably tap into the extraordinary cocreative potential that exists whenever human beings gather together. Stories and historical examples illustrate how collective wisdom has emerged in a range of cultures, settings and traditions, and we offer a set of practices to help readers realize the key lessons of the book. Equally important, the book describes how to recognize the pitfalls of polarization or false agreement that lead to collective folly. Ultimately, this work emerges from a deep conviction that we all have a stake in each other and that what binds us together can be greater than what drives us apart.
We see our efforts as part of a larger social movement. Everywhere we look, we see groups, networks, and communities rising up to address common challenges. What all of us share is a collective outlook and a desire for wise action. We seek what human beings have always sought: to find what is best in ourselves and what is best in and for the group. Our intent in the book is to articulate some of the key ideas of this search and to provide a foundation for the field of collective wisdom’s further development.
This book takes knowledge about groups and elevates it to a field and a movement. The authors are original thinkers, good writers, and have the ability to integrate a breadth of thinking into a new whole.
~ Peter Block, author Community and Stewardship