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Podcast    H4'ed 8/6/17

Yaneer Bar-Yam; Applying Complexity Theory to The World's Hardest Problems

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Broadcast 8/6/2017 at 12:24 AM EDT (53 Listens, 47 Downloads, 1774 Itunes)
The Rob Kall Bottom Up Radio Show Podcast

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Yaneer Bar-yom
Yaneer Bar-yom
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Yaneer Bar-Yam is Director of the New England Complex System Institute , in Cambridge, Massachusetts, author of Making Things Work; Solving Complex Problems in a Complex World. He's used complexity theory and quantum mechanics theory to predict that the Arab Spring would happen, and applies these approaches to social problems, health care, education, warfare, terrorism and more.

First question. What is complexity theory, how does it relate to systems theory and how do you use this approach to deal with social, political issues and the like, and your message that no single person can deal with the problems or the complexity of our modern world.

In your book, Making Things Work, you say that sometimes, putting a person in charge can make things worse

You've said, "if we stick to hierarchies we're going to fail, but there are other structures that can work. More network distributed organizations, that a cultural shift happening, where people are realizing that how much you rely on leaders is actually causing systems to be less successful.

Hierarchy is a concept, among humans, that I believe took root in a strong way, after humans domesticated and dominated, animals and land, which brought about civilization. But before civilization, hominids were more bottom up, less hierarchical.

You've suggested that we need to shift from our current representative democracy from a hierarchical model to a more lateral or horizontal decision-making structure--but that we don't have a formula for such a process. Please talk about the considerations and offer your thoughts on what we need to to and how to get there.


You talk about how the world became more interdependent in the 1980s.

How does your approach offer hope to people dealing with problems and people hoping to make change happen?

How does this work apply to the military, health care, education, terrorism, business, management, leadership You refer to the idea of distributed network.

You say that new patterns of thinking are needed.

complex collective.

Civilization as organism

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Rob Kall is an award winning journalist, inventor, software architect, connector and visionary. His work and his writing have been featured in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, the HuffingtonPost, Success, Discover and other media.

Check out his platform at

He is the author of The Bottom-up Revolution; Mastering the Emerging World of Connectivity

He's given talks and workshops to Fortune 500 execs and national medical and psychological organizations, and pioneered first-of-their-kind conferences in Positive Psychology, Brain Science and Story. He hosts some of the world's smartest, most interesting and powerful people on his Bottom Up Radio Show, and founded and publishes one of the top Google- ranked progressive news and opinion sites,

more detailed bio:

Rob Kall has spent his adult life as an awakener and empowerer-- first in the field of biofeedback, inventing products, developing software and a music recording label, MuPsych, within the company he founded in 1978-- Futurehealth, and founding, organizing and running 3 conferences: Winter Brain, on Neurofeedback and consciousness, Optimal Functioning and Positive Psychology (a pioneer in the field of Positive Psychology, first presenting workshops on it in 1985) and Storycon Summit Meeting on the Art Science and Application of Story-- each the first of their kind. Then, when he found the process of raising people's consciousness and empowering them to take more control of their lives one person at a time was too slow, he founded which has been the top search result on Google for the terms liberal news and progressive opinion for several years. Rob began his Bottom-up Radio show, broadcast on WNJC 1360 AM to Metro Philly, also available on iTunes, covering the transition of our culture, business and world from predominantly Top-down (hierarchical, centralized, authoritarian, patriarchal, big) to bottom-up (egalitarian, local, interdependent, grassroots, archetypal feminine and small.) Recent long-term projects include a book, Bottom-up-- The Connection Revolution, (more...)

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