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Required Reading from Rajiv Mehta

Stria Staff March 18, 2018

Rajiv Mehta is the CEO of Atlas of Caregiving. Founder of Bhageera Inc., Rajiv spent more than a decade developing solutions for consumer health and wellbeing. He also held roles managing new product strategy with companies including Apple and Adobe, building upon his work as a research scientist with NASA.

A book I’d recommend to anyone dealing with complex situations, and living a long life surely qualifies, is “Thinking in Systems: A Primer” by Donella Meadows. A critical bit of wisdom from the book is, “We can’t control systems or figure them out. But we can dance with them!” –Rajiv Mehta

Thinking in Systems: a Primer
By Donella H. Meadows

Thinking in Systems, is a concise and crucial book offering insight for problem solving on scales ranging from the personal to the global. Edited by the Sustainability Institute’s Diana Wright, this essential primer brings systems thinking out of the realm of computers and equations and into the tangible world, showing readers how to develop the systems-thinking skills that thought leaders across the globe consider critical for 21st-century life.

Some of the biggest problems facing the world ― war, hunger, poverty, and environmental degradation ― are essentially system failures. They cannot be solved by fixing one piece in isolation from the others, because even seemingly minor details have enormous power to undermine the best efforts of too-narrow thinking.

While readers will learn the conceptual tools and methods of systems thinking, the heart of the book is grander than methodology. Donella Meadows was known as much for nurturing positive outcomes as she was for delving into the science behind global dilemmas. She reminds readers to pay attention to what is important, not just what is quantifiable, to stay humble, and to stay a learner.

In a world growing ever more complicated, crowded, and interdependent, Thinking in Systems helps readers avoid confusion and helplessness, the first step toward finding proactive and effective solutions. (From the publisher)

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