The concept of circular economy resonates, to a certain degree, Antoine Lavoisier’s famous 18th century quote “Nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is transformed.” While Lavoisier’s loop of interconnectedness acknowledged the transitioning of states of things, the concept of circular economy is founded on the principles of consciously removing and designing out waste with the purpose of providing positive input to systems, allowing them to sustainably regenerate themselves.
With the ideas of sustainability and constant positive transformation encapsulating a living and breathing vision of productivity and effectiveness in the materialization of how things are done in society and industry, an interesting challenge (or dichotomy) arises for the neural network of organizations: the (re)conceptualization of “waste” and its relationship with human performance.
The gush of technological and scientific transfer into organizations where human performance is indisputably intertwined with service provision, paralleled with Artificial Intelligence (AI) making its breakthrough (remember the last time you may have accessed a certain service provider and were welcomed by a dialogue box with a chirpy “Hello, how can I help you”?), it is pointless to believe that already existing gap(s) will not be increased, that competitiveness will not be impacted and that uninformed narratives about AI replacing humans will impede the successful transfer of artificial capabilities with the potential to create new opportunities for improved human solutions.
While AI may be artificial at its core, real human dilemmas are posed which require new social debates to be activated, namely those concerning integrated human-centred approaches.
As the human brain feeds its potential to create scenarios through its complex and unique neural network, connecting nodes to ascribe meaning to things and, positively, meaningfully and purposefully aiming to leverage our human experience, organizations have been forced to change. And not as a direct consequence of AI.
Despite clear international, national and local discrepancies in all geographical realities, March 11, 2020 demonstrated a specific level of global interconnectedness with a clear and vibrant footprint which made no distinction on where it stepped. With it came a clearer understanding of where science and technology are indisputably relevant and how they are insignificant without the right human context. Integration and synergetic relationships become a new choice and/or option. Answers to the following questions (for those who have not yet started asking them) might constitute organizational and individual food for thought:
- How broad (or limited) is the spectrum of choices and options? Why?
- How does that determine resistance to ecosystemic changes?
- How is a higher or lower level of resistance to the integration of technological and scientific transfer impacting on short-, medium- and long-term goals?
- What -or who- is dispensable?
With the amalgamation of collective and individual accountability, how does your organizational vaccine card score in the current circular ecosystem? Where is your organizational waste located? Which new neural and synergetic paths need to be forged?