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The book follows the 5th Discipline Fieldbook style of using stories to convey important messages relating to sustainability, energy and resource use, amongst others. The stories illustrate the 5 disciplines of the learning organisation (Personal Mastery, Mental Models, Shared Vision, Team Learning and Systems Thinking) and how they have been used to implement sustainable systems - such as the Green Building rating system.
It gives examples of how parterships such as Coke and the WWF can work toward sustainability - and how the Industrial Age bubble is contrary to nature (there is little waste in nature).
Systems thinking and mental models are used in "The Bathtub" illustration following the Fishing Banks game. It shows how we see the "flow" element in a system (taking the fish out of the fishery) and ignore the part of the system accumulates the "stock" (the health and size of the fishery). For me, this illustration alone was worth the two-credit price of the book.
16 of 16 people found this review helpful
Although this book is specifically about sustainability, in a broader sense it is really about how to bring systems thinking into our institutions and into our global society. The revolution that the authors refer to is twofold: it is focused on our global environmental impact, and it is focused on the change in thinking that needs to take place in order to minimize that impact. Three key behaviors will create this shift in thinking: seeing systems, collaborating across boundaries, and moving from a problem solving mindset to one of creating the future. The book offers some great examples of how we got into our current predicament and companies that are starting to apply systems thinking to help move "beyond the bubble," as it is referred to in the book. Scattered throughout the book are sections called "Toolbox," which offer a number of exercises and activities that organizations can undertake to begin to address the issue of sustainability. This book is a great resource for any organization looking to do more than pick the low hanging fruit when it comes to sustainability.
7 of 7 people found this review helpful