Members get a snapshot view of new Long Now content with easy access to all their member benefits.
Published quarterly, the member newsletter gives in-depth and behind the scenes updates on Long Now's projects.
Special updates on the 10,000 Year Clock project are posted on the members only Clock Blog.
Filmed on Friday November 9, 02007
A sociologist by training, Professor Kanter teaches at Harvard Business School. Her newest book is America the Principled, the 17th in a body of work that includes Confidence, Men & Women of the Corporation, The Change Masters, When Giants Learn to Dance, The Mind of the Strategist, The Borderless World, and Work & Family in the United States.
Principles are fundamental and moral, and they abide. Professor Kanter from the Harvard Business School, author of renowned leadership and strategy books such as The Change Masters and When Giants Learn to Dance, has a new book titled America the Principled. In it and in this talk, she "offers a positive agenda for the nation, focussed on innovation and education, a new workplace social contract, values-based corporate conduct, competent government, positive international relations through citizen diplomacy and business networks, and national and community service."
“Everything looks like a failure in the middle.” Any new enterprise, Kanter explained, encounters roadblocks. As the obstacles multiply, the situation looks hopeless. That’s when deeply held principles and the long view are most needed to get you past the panic.
To characterize America’s current winter of discontent she quoted Woody Allen: “One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness. The other, to total extinction. Let us pray we have the wisdom to choose correctly.” Panic leads to abandoning principles, and that is how successes end.
Kanter commends three principles in particular for renewal of the faltering American enterprise…
* Open minds. In the clash between orthodoxy and creativity, opt for the spirit of discovery and progress.
* Higher purpose and sense of meaning.
Kanter noted the emergence of “values-based capitalism.” One example she knows from her own consulting work is IBM. Shortly after the new CEO Sam Palmisano took over in 2002, he instituted an online “ValuesJam” with 300,000 employees. The result was a declaration that IBM stands for “Innovation that matters— for our company and for the world.” She has seen that value played out in IBM public service activities such as the World Community Grid, which engages idle CPU time on computers connected to the Internet (740,000 so far) to solve scientific problems in HIV-AIDS, cancer, muscular dystrophy, and human genomics.
* Common ground. Inclusiveness and shared responsibility is a particularly American principle first noted and celebrated by Alexis de Tocqueville. It is reflected in Bill Clinton’s observation, “Big government is being replaced by big citizens.”
There’s been enough panic and winter in America, Kanter concluded. It’s time for some endless summer. Get out and connect with the street, with nature, with the world.--Stewart Brand
Condensed ideas about long-term thinking summarized by Stewart Brand
(with Kevin Kelly, Alexander Rose and Paul Saffo) and a foreword by Brian Eno.
We would also like to recognize George Cowan (1920 - 2012) for being the first to sponsor this series.Would you like to be a featured Sponsor?
Seminars About Long-term Thinking is made possible through the generous support of The Long Now Membership and our Seminar Sponsors. We offer $5,000 and $15,000 annual Sponsorships, both of which entitle the sponsor and a guest to reserved seating at all Long Now seminars and special events. In addition, we invite $15,000 Sponsors to attend dinner with the speaker after each Seminar, and $5,000 Sponsors may choose to attend any four dinners during the sponsored year. For more information about donations and Seminar Sponsorship, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We are a public 501(c)(3) non-profit, and donations to us are always tax deductible.
The Long Now Foundation • Fostering Long-term Responsibility • est. 01996 Top of Page