Wicked Problems

India faces a unique challenge in an uncertain future: we have a young and largely poor population that rightfully demands a life of freedom, dignity and prosperity. Our response to this uncertainty will not be energetic and aggressive and infused with the requisite degree of urgency unless it becomes part of India’s quest for a flourishing society.

Wicked Minds

Only Wicked Minds Solve Wicked Problems

From Climate Change to the COVID19 crisis, we are surrounded by wicked problems that our current ways of thinking and acting aren't able to address. Wicked problems are characterized by extreme complexity, where some stakeholders have a vested interest in keeping the system the way it is and where every pathway has moral as well as material dimensions.

We believe that instead of solving wicked problems 'directly' we are better off looking at them along with the minds of the people embedded in the problem; make those minds wiser and we have a better chance overall. In other words: only wicked minds solve wicked problems. The natural question: how to cultivate wicked minds?

We don't have a definitive answer to that question, but we think that any solution to a wicked problem will come from co-designing solutions with agents embedded in that problem. That's true of our interventions in the real world and in the classroom.

Agent Centric Design

Wisdom is already there; it only needs to evoked

Agents embedded in a system already have deep insights and wisdom about the challenges they face. We work with them to evoke their collective wisdom by:

  • Surfacing their tacit understanding
  • Aligning their views
  • Committing to joint actions

Socratus creates learning and doing spaces with our partners where there's a much faster loop between data, prototyping, action and feedback. These take the form of workshops, courses and design labs.

These spaces are designed and facilitated by us, based on our deep understanding of the human mind and the social sector. Check out an example based on our work on farmer income.