A brief welcome and overview of the Institute's mission and strategy
Dear friends,
Welcome to The Institute of Applied Metatheory, thank you for visiting.
The Institute of Applied Metatheory (IAM) is a social action think tank founded on a focused, singular mission: to use Big Picture, "integrative metatheories" to map difficult problems, issues and contexts in order to help us identify promising targets for social action—evolutionary acupuncture points (what we call "Transformational Fulcrums") where good metatheory suggests action-learning experiments that might unleash new forms of progress within them.
In other words, we aim to use the most comprehensive maps of reality that are available in order to translate wicked contexts into transformational experiments, and in doing so, to rationalize consensus for social action.
This mission grows out of our belief that the real complexity of society—and, broadly speaking, that of a global, interpenetrating "metacrisis" in education, meaning making, economics, environment and leadership—has outrun the complexity of the worldviews trying to navigate it. We believe this problem has been made far worse by the fragmentation of sensemaking at the intersection of social media, disciplinary silos, political tribalism, and non-integrative mindsets.
We see these two pillars, of overwhelming real complexity and outmatched sensemaking, as underpinning all other challenges we face in the 21st century. They simply demand much more of us around metapractical social innovation. They demand we transcend our narrower ideological biases, our personal silos and our institutional incentives to work in a more open, cooperative and socially reflexive way. In a very real sense, IAM is an example of its own medicine in action: a social experiment founded to explore and experiment with a speculative hypothesis of a novel way to convene metatheorists, funders, subject-matter experts, leaders and others to collectively learn toward better transformational praxis.
And we invite you to join us. As a social action think tank, we can't succeed without galvanizing a diverse community of dedicated and talented people to take action. These pages will give you an overview of our activities and answers to some of the most common questions how you might do so.
Robb Smith
Founder and Executive Team Leader
Last modified 5mo ago