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Mapping the Complexity of Climate Change and Sustainability

"Mapping the Complexity of Climate Change and Sustainability" is the title of a conversation in the Sustainability group at the Presencing Community site, which Toni Stafford, a wise, whole-brain woman opened on March 5. By "whole brain" I mean someone who is at home with matters of Spirit, beauty, deep intuition, AND doesn't shy away from the scientific dimensions of what evolutionary agents need to master, such as chaos and complexity theory in action, systems dynamics, holarchy, etc.

Toni developed a systems dynamics model that reflects her understanding the multiple perspectives on climate change and how to balance the needs of environment, economy, and society. She added:

"Creation of these diagrams MUST be collaborative and iterative. No one person can comprehend and map all the complexity herself. That means I'm aware that it is incomplete and even deeply flawed."

Toni posted her model both in the format of the Vensim systems dynamics software, for those of us who want to interact with the model and in PowerPoint for those who want only to see it. I attach here ToniStafford's sysdynamics view of climate change, March 5, 2010 .ppt , hoping that some of the world-citizens will decide to dive into the model sooner or later, on our collaborative learning journey. To change it to readable size, after downloading it, select 200%.

Toni says: If you are unaccustomed to reading these models, look for the big bold blue words "I am exposed to climate change data" in the center of the cluster of loops on the left. This is where you will begin to read the story. Follow the arrows around and read the words in order that you encounter them. When the words have multiple arrows leading away from them, think of that as a "choose your own adventure story". Pick a thread and follow it around and then go back and follow any of the thread you've missed.

If you want to go deeper in studying and improving her model, I recommend to download its Vensim version from her post, for which you'd also have to download the Vensim's model reader and Personal Learning Edition.

If after all this, you feel inspired to work with Toni on the collaborative development of the systems dynamics model of the complexity of climate change and sustainability, please join her in the conversation in the Presencing community.