Meeting uncertain situations with participation

Meeting uncertain situations with participation

19 October 2021 Sebastian Jüngel 1060 views

The conditions and values for taking on tasks in society, enterprises and self-administration have changed. With certainty and knowledge less in the foreground, different skills are needed for acting together in unknown and uncertain situations.


“We come from a time where everything was about control and mastery, about predicting, whereas the new times are about uncertainty,” says Remco Bakker, managing director of the Centrum Indicatiestelling Zorg in the Netherlands and a partner in the World Goetheanum Association. A new approach to uncertain situation is required.

Marjatta van Boeschoten, a management consultant and also a partner in the World Goetheanum Association, knows the “the winner takes it all” perspective from her former work as a lawyer and realizes that people in enterprises strive to work together and be useful to each other, because this is also effective in building long-term productive working relationships. In her view, this requires qualities such as openness and the ability to listen, communicate and be creative.

Remco Bakker has also had the experience that trust, openness and value-based practice are good for enterprises, but points out that including as many co-workers as possible also means taking risks. If the organization is seen as a collective intelligence, however, it may well turn out that taking on tasks together, making use of as many skills and as much potential as possible, will ultimately be more sustainable than one person or committee trying to solve problems alone.

What is needed is that all those involved trust each other and see themselves as learners in a social field where an opening up to new possibilities is possible because one shares perspectives, holds out the not-knowing together and practises a movement where one researches new forms and where new structures arise out of responsibility for the whole.


English by Margot M. Saar

Web World Goetheanum Association

Cover Image: Include as many abilities as possible: participation (photo: Ariane Totzke)