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Society’s Larger Knowledge Challenges Published: Sunday, May 25, 2008 By: Dr. Manuel Ángel (Coco) Morales

The knowledge society is a social and economic system that develops and engages the intelligence, the business judgment, and the wide-system responsibility of all its sectors and members.  By using the knowledge of every corner of the organizational and of every human being, the society can respond more effectively to global, market, economic and social challenges.

In exploring the conditions of knowledge creation and applications, the society assures the healthy and democratic context for both freedom of choice and responsibility for the whole.  The elements that have to be present are: 1) internal free markets; 2) freedom of enterprise; 3) empowered teams; 4) community and solidarity among organizations and inside these institutions; 5) rewarding value and acknowledging the beauty of diversity; 6) voluntary learning networks; 7) democratic self-rule; 8) multiple sources of authority; 9) and efficient government.

But yes, advocating for this kind of society will not automatically lead to the solutions for the whole social and economic system problems.  Yet, each organization that flourishes through its members expression of their potentialities will give hope that we the people of this country can make the necessary for the betterment of our social and economic life.  If we have to coined a name for this perspective or for these changes in economic and social practice, we can say that this is a matter of the new competitiveness economics that relates and spreads, as political, business, financial and community leaders come together and admit the scale and the nature of changes now needed, and begin a collective reinvention of economic and competitiveness reality.

Let me share with my readers my strong conviction that in Puerto Rico we have  knowledge organizations that can help meet the larger challenge of the future of our society. 

  1. These organizations are developing their people and their shared masteries within freedom and responsible communities.  Working within the context of a culture of freedom and collaboration creates organizational and professional citizens more experienced in whole system responsibility, democratic process, and dealing with complex dilemmas.  These organizations are heavily investing in continual education and training, and that will create better citizens more prepare to initiate and to cope with the necessary changes in the larger society.
  2. When this diversity of intellectual capital across organizations and sectors is interconnected in productive networks, organizations and institutions of all sorts, can develop the intellectual, knowledge and management capacity to execute their missions while dealing effectively with additional issues such as sustainability, competitiveness and poverty issues.
  3. Knowledge organizations, as communities of relatively autonomous stakeholders, can experiment with new forms of responsible self-management, new ways to influence or guide the markets, new ways to integrate complex objectives, new designs for organizations, and new forms of democracy.

In organizations, municipalities, and in the society as whole, we need to try with better ways to unite people and groups of great diversity of people, talent, and culture to address societal challenges.

Knowledgeable business organizations can be the pilot projects for new, wiser institutions needed in the twenty-first century.

 


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