ACTION FOR HUMAN AND WORLD FUTURES
The 21st century is a pivotal time: the actions we take now could affect our world for generations to come. Science and technology have given us awesome powers to create better worlds but not the political will or wisdom to achieve them. For this we need educated, skilled and energised citizens of the world. This is what Action for Human and World Futures (Action) is all about.
Action follows our first foundation course, Humanity in the 21st Century and Beyond, to bring the ideas and motivations developed there, into practice. It considers the present state of the world and what crucial changes are needed now? It looks to the future to envision better worlds and examines practical pathways to achieve them. It fosters self-understanding and capacity building to become an effective agent for change and help bring about a world we would want to live in.
WHAT ACTIONS SHOULD I TAKE?
We are faced with massive global problems such as climate change, threats of nuclear war, inequality and grinding poverty for many as well as a plethora of important local and regional problems in both developing and developed countries. We need to be aware of all but to focus on the few that we can be most effective and engaged with now. What you choose will be based on your current interests, talents, skills and opportunities. As you grow in experience and ability you are likely to take on others and so further the global move to better futures. Action will help you choose wisely.
HOW DOES SOCIETY WORK AND HOW CAN I BEST WORK WITHIN IT?
We may be passionate to make a change but how can we do that in the face of entrenched government, business and cultural interests and constraints. We need to understand how these systems work if we are to work within them or, if needed, go around them. By examining more about the way society works, Action can guide you to the best approach to get things done in the world we live in now.
HOW CAN I BE AN EFFECTIVE AGENT FOR CHANGE?
The most important thing you can do is to know yourself and further develop your talents and skills; your motivations and resilience; and the energy and time you can commit to effecting change. Action can help you do just that and, most importantly, with the collaboration and support of your fellow students, make your actities matter.
THEMES EXPLORED IN THIS COURSE
- The wisdom and will to act: the key to human futures.
- How have we acted in the past; to what purpose and to what effect?
- Visions for the future: what do we really want?
- How does our globalised society work: can it work better?
- What are our rules: government, law and law enforcement?
- How does business and our global economy work?
- Changing hearts and minds: from example and persuasion.
- Education for life and living: sharing and integrating wisdom and action. Effective action: understanding ourselves, our talents, commitments and motivations.
- Levels of action: local, regional, national and global.
- Effective action: skills and tools.
- Acting together; what can be my role, what can I do?
- Envisioning better futures.
- Creating and following effective pathways to the future.
- Evaluating and prioritising threats and opportunities.
- Collaborative problem solving.
- Project design and management.
- Leadership and effective membership.
- Influencing and engaging others.
VALUES AND ATTITUDES NURTURED
- Knowing yourself.
- Respect for the needs and views of others.
- Rational optimism.
- Courage and determination.
- Creativity, nimbleness: surmounting and bypassing barriers.
Commitment 12 weeks