The Wisdom Page 


A talk to be delivered at the July 29, 2006 meeting of The World Future Society —

Wisdom & Leadership: Linking the Past, Present & Future.

by Dr Bruce Lloyd, Professor of Strategic Management, London South Bank University


Wisdom is the way we incorporate our values into our decision making process and it is our values that determine the way we define that critical word ‘quality’. The word ‘quality’ can also be seen as another way of distinguishing process from change. Not all change is progress and it is our values that ultimately determine our priorities. It is these priorities that then become the criteria we use to distinguish between change and progress.

Decisions taken today are driven by our visions of tomorrow and based on what we learned yesterday. This basic rule applies to all decisions, irrespective of size. Every time we take any decision we are involved in some element of leadership but the bigger the decision the more critical our leadership credentials become. This presentation will review the WFS ‘Wisdom of the World’ project and discuss the key questions:          

                  * What is Wisdom?
                  * Why is it important for Leadership?
                  * How is it Learned?
                  * How can it be learned more effectively? --  in order to improve the quality of our                                 Leadership and hence the quality of the decisions we take every day about the                                 way the world will be tomorrow?

In essence, the paper will argue that Wisdom is the way we incorporate our values into our decision making process.

Traditionally we have seen Wisdom as the highest form of knowledge, within the Data/ Information/ Knowledge /Wisdom pyramid. But the paper will explain why that pyramid doesn’t really work.

Wisdom is certainly more than data, and it is more than just information, and not the same as knowledge.

So what makes a Wisdom different?

These issues are explored in four ways:

  • By exploring the definition of Wisdom
  • Through historic statements about the nature of Wisdom.
  • Through statements that we perhaps we might accept as statements of Wisdom.
  • and through a review how this can be linked to the Data/ Information/ Knowledge /Wisdom pyramid.

The paper will also explore the difference between Wisdom & being wise.

Finally there is a discussion of why we need to take the whole issue of the link between Wisdom and Leadership much more seriously, as well as how we might help improve that process and hence improve the quality of the decisions we take every day about the way the world will be tomorrow?


Wisdom & Leadership: Linking the Past, Present & Future.

by Bruce Lloyd, Professor of Strategic Management, London South Bank University

Over the past decade, in my view, the core development in strategy has been the recognition of the importance of Learning and Learning Organisation concepts. In fact it is increasingly recognised by organisations, individuals - and even nation states - that:

"Effective learning is the only sustainable competitive advantage".

I certainly do not find it surprising that, in the past few years, this focus on Learning has been extended into a whole new industry called 'Knowledge Management', as well as being an integral part of ‘Leadership’. Obviously, if you are concerned with learning, it is natural to ask the questions: What are we learning? And perhaps even more importantly: What do we need to learn? And How do we learn it? These developments coincided with the widespread use of computers which created massive new challenges from what is known as 'information explosion' and with it new challenges over establishing priorities.

In parallel, there was the influence of the new Millennium itself. That event was probably the greatest learning point in human history. Never before has so much intellectual effort been focused on reflecting on - and learning from - our history. That reflective learning should have started by trying to define what has been distilled into Wisdom by exploring three basic key questions:

* Where have we come from?
* What are we doing here? and
* Where are we going?

Surely H.G. Wells was right when he said that:

"Human history becomes more and more a race between Education and Catastrophe." 

(H.G. Wells (1866-1946), The Outline of History (1920).)

How often do we seem to be either obsessed with technology, or so focused on the experience of the here-and-now, that the issue of wisdom appears to be virtually ignored? That certainly was the case in the vast majority of Millennium induced thinking about the future.

We also need to recognise that the more change that is going on in society, the more important it is that we make sure that our learning and leadership is as effective as possible. That is the only way we have any chance of being able to equate change with progress. So, if we want to have a better future the first, and most important, thing that we have to do is, in my view, improve the quality and effectiveness of our learning.

But are we really focused on what is important, rather than on just what is easy to measure? Information rather than Wisdom?

In addition, an underlying assumption of the word 'learning' is that we are trying to do things 'better'. We are trying to improve things. We are trying to make progress. Of course, the concepts behind the words: 'improve', 'better' and 'progress' are powerfully values-driven words, which are increasingly recognised to be at the core of leadership.

If learning is critical, we then have to ask ourselves:

* What is the Wisdom?
* How do we learn it? and
* How can we pass it on (more) effectively?

But what do we really mean by Wisdom?

According to the Wikipedia (5/8/05) entry for Wisdom:

Wisdom is often meant as the ability and desire to make choices that can gain approval in a long-term examination by many people. In this sense, to label a choice ‘wise’ implies that the action or inaction was strategically correct when judged by widely-held values.

To acknowledge the existence of wisdom assumes order and absolute. Wisdom is recognizing the difference between good and evil and choosing what is good. To acknowledge wisdom is also to acknowledge consequences for unwise or foolish choices.

As with all decisions, a wise decision must be made with incomplete information. But to act wisely, a sage must plan a reasonable future situation, desire the outcome to be broadly beneficial, and then act.

A standard philosophical definition says that wisdom consists of ‘making the best use of available knowledge.’

Many modern authorities on government, religion and philosophical ethics say that wisdom connotes an ‘enlightened perspective’. This perspective is often defined in a utilitarian way, as effective support for the long-term common good.

Insights and acts that many people agree are wise tend to:

  • arise from a viewpoint compatible with many ethical systems,

  • serve life, public goods or other impersonal values, not narrow self-interest

  • be grounded in but not limited by past experience or history and yet anticipate future likely consequences

  • be informed by multiple forms of intelligence – reason, intuition, heart, spirit, etc.”

Wisdom can be considered to be a useful 'truth' with a long shelf life ('it has stood the test of time'), and it is particularly related to insights that are useful in understanding the relationships that work well within ourselves, and in relationships with each other and with the universe as a whole. (Hence the insights are globally recognisable.) It is important to recognise that all Wisdom is based on well founded information, but certainly it is not the case that all well founded information is Wisdom.

It is easy to recycle Wisdom, the hard thing is to put it into practice; those people who put Wisdom into practice are those who we would consider Wise. In essence. being Wise is the ability to put information/knowledge to good use. (ie: Using it in the wider interest for the long term.)

According to Daniel Yankelovitch (‘The Magic of Dialogue’, Nicholas Brealey (1999), p191) “Webster defines Wisdom as ‘the ability to judge soundly and to deal sagaciously (‘having or showing insight or Wisdom’) with the facts, especially as they relate to life and conduct’ This dictionary definition helps us to distinguish between information and Wisdom. Information is fact-driven. Wisdom is the more encompassing term; it goes beyond factual knowledge by adding values to facts. Since most public bodies bear on life conduct, we need to bring values as well as factual knowledge to bear.”

Decisions inevitably involve priorities and these inevitably have a values dimension.

Wisdom statements are those that appear to be useful in helping us all make the world a ‘better’ place in the future. But they are only useful, if they also check out with our own experience. Of course, that relatively simple objective is not quite as easy as it sounds for at least two reasons:

Firstly, the word 'better' explicitly, and implicitly, means that we are involved in considering the whole complicated subject of values that are embedded in the question: "What do we mean by 'better'? It should surprise no one that a critical part of the content of any Wisdom statement is the extent to which it incorporates judgements about values. In fact, in many ways, that is a critical part of the definition of what we mean by Wisdom. But that does not mean that all statements
that reflect values can be defined as Wisdom; the extra dimension required is that they are widely accepted, and that they have 'stood the test of time'.

Secondly, it is important to recognise that in trying to 'make the world a better place for us all' we can run into potential areas of conflict. For example, making things 'better' for some people can be at the expense of making it worse for others. Much of the conflict that arises in this area is because different people mean different things because they are using different time horizons when they talk about the future. Some are obsessed with tomorrow, whilst others are primarily concerned with what they perceive to be the needs of the next decade, or even hundred years. These issues are central to all debates about the role and nature of leadership.

When differences do occur, it is essentially the quality of our dialogue that, in the end, will determine the quality of the decision and outcome.

data/information/knowledge/Wisdom links

I believe it is important to explore the link between data/information/knowledge and Wisdom. The traditional approach to the data/information/knowledge/Wisdom link is to see a close relationship within a pyramid that starts with data at the bottom, moving through information and knowledge to end with Wisdom at the top. In essence, there is, somehow, greater 'added value' as we move up that pyramid.

In my view, this progression has a fundamental flaw, which arises from the relationship between these four items not being linearly related and, therefore, there is no linear step-by-step movement up the pyramid from data to Wisdom. The basically mechanistic progression is a reflection of the Newtonian tradition, repackaged by the Management Science of Taylorism. The integration of all four concepts requires at least one, if not two, quantum/qualitative jumps.

Information can certainly be considered a ‘higher’ form of data, because it provides greater context and so greater meaning/usefulness. However, the transformation of information into knowledge requires the first quantum jump. A book that describes how a jet engine works is an example of information. It is only when information is actually used that it is becomes knowledge. In essence, knowledge is information in use and, of course, it is through its use, and the feedback learning loop, that you gain further information, which then gets turned into even more effective knowledge. Overall, it is a never ending dynamic process.

But where does Wisdom come in? In essence, Wisdom is the vehicle we use for integrating our values into our decision-making processes. It is one thing to turn information into knowledge that ‘makes things happen’, but it is quite another thing to make the ‘right’ (/’good’/’better’) things happen. How we actually use knowledge depends on our values.

Instead of moving up from knowledge to Wisdom, we actually move down from Wisdom to knowledge -- and that is how we incorporate our values into our knowledge based decision-making, as well as see the application and relevance of what we generally call Wisdom. It is only possible - and justified - for decisions to be reduced to a cost/benefit analysis, if it is possible to quantify all the ‘values’ elements within the equation in monetary terms. In the past values have been included implicitly, whereas today that dimension need to be made much more – if not fully - explicit. All decisions involve the integration of the economics dimensions of value, with the ethical (ie ‘right’) dimension of ‘values’.

In practice we do this all the time but, today, we are required to be more explicit about what these values are, and how they can be – and are – valued. This puts even greater emphasis on our ability to undertake effective dialogue.

Of course, this too is a dynamic process and there is continual feedback from the experience of our actions into whether we need more information and data - what and how much more information/data we need - are also values influenced decisions. How values are assessed both as the ends, and means, of the outcome, are critically important in all our decision making.

In order to complete this picture it is useful to reverse the data/information/knowledge/Wisdom progression into Wisdom/knowledge/information/data, and consider that it is our values/Wisdom that defines the limits of what we consider acceptable in the first place, and that decision then determines our knowledge/action priorities, which then determines what information is required, and that determines what further questions need to be asked about the data required. In practice, we need to understand these two pyramids/progressions, and how they relate to each other, if we want to understand both how we incorporate values into our decision making processes, and why Wisdom plays such an important role. Although, it does need to be recognised that sometimes the way these words and concepts have been used in the past has not always helped this process. Perhaps that is one reason why wise decision making has not been as widely practiced as we would have liked? Being decisive is easy; being decisive about the ‘right’ things is the real challenge that confronts us all. I would argue that we do (and should) start with values/Wisdom as our base, which then provides the framework within which we manage knowledge, and so on through the pyramid to information and data. Consequently, without an effective base at one level, it is impossible to manage effectively the next layer up.

It is also useful to see knowledge as information in use, and Wisdom as the integration of knowledge and values, as reflected by the comments below:

“Data is not information. Information is not knowledge. Knowledge is not understanding. Understanding is not Wisdom.”

“ The Function of Wisdom is to discriminate between good and evil”
(Marcus Tullius Cicero)

“Knowledge is of no value unless you put it into practice.”
(Anton Chekhov (1860-1904))

Hence I hope I have established the link between Wisdom and its relevance to both strategy and knowledge management, as well as leadership.

Several years ago I started collecting what I considered to be the important quotations that contained long shelf life knowledge (i.e. 'Wisdom') that, in my view, ought to be given a high priority in what we consider passing onto the next generation through learning. In many cases there is considerable scope for disagreement over who said what. But those focused on the future, rather than the past should, in my view, give priority to the message, rather than the messenger.

Sometimes, even when the quotation itself is well recognised, research shows that it was based on an earlier version, with a very minor modification.  For example:

"If I have seen farther, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants".
(Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727)).

Is very similar to a comment made many centuries earlier:

"Pygmies placed on the shoulders of giants see more than the giants themselves."
(Marcus Lucan (AD 39-65)).

And: "We are like dwarfs on the shoulders of giants, so that we can see more than they, and things at a greater distance, not by virtue of any sharpness of sight on our part, or any physical distinction, but because we are carried high and raised up by their giant size."
(Bernard of Chartres c1120 AD)

There are also situations where the generally accepted quotation can be different to the original version. For example, the Bible is supposedly the source of:

"Money is the root of all evil."
when the original version is, in fact:
"For the love of money is the root of all evil."

Even here, there is a precedent:
"Love of money is the beginning of evil, because the operation of evil is connected to love of
In theory at least, once we can agree on the important messages, it should not be too difficult to ensure that there are appropriate channels for the effective learning of these messages. Also, it is not unreasonable to assume that, if we have learned the right things, we ought to then be in a position to do the ‘right’ thing with that information/knowledge. Of course, that is an assumption and, perhaps, there are more issues in that jump from information to ‘knowledge to action’, than are normally recognised. But, if that is the case, then we probably need to revisit messages in order to ensure we give a higher priority to issues related to the importance of meaning and motivation in human behaviour. For example: 

"Our values are revealed by what we do, not by what we say."


"It is not enough to know what is good; you must be able to do it."
(George Bernard Shaw, Back to Methuselah, Act IV, scene 1, (1921).)

This is not just an academic exercise, our future is critically dependent on what we learn and, unless this subject is given much greater attention, it is extremely unlikely that we will be involved in anything remotely like progress, however that is defined.

In the end it is our Wisdom/values that enables us to increase the propbability that change can be equality with progress.

There is enormous scope for debate, both practical and philosophical, about the specific wisdom items, and their sources, identified in this article. Those dimensions only really becomes important when we try to establish priorities which, of course, in the end, we always need to do. However, at this stage, I am just concerned with trying to encourage the debate over the need to include a greater role for Wisdom.

In this process, I would also like to acknowledge the parallel (and overlapping) contributions of other publications, I have come across recently:

1. The Wisdom Literature, Appendix C in First Things First by Stephen R.
Covey & A. Roger Merrill, Simon & Schuster (1994), which explores the
patterns, consistencies and themes that they consider represented the
most validated database in all human experience.
2. The Wisdom of the Ages: Eternal Truths for Everyday Life, by Wayne W.
Dyer, Thorsons (1998), which is a remarkable analysis of how we can live
more meaningful lives by close study of the words of poets and
philosophers throughout the ages.
3. Working Wisdom: The Ultimate Value in the New Economy, by John Della
Costa, Stoddart Publishing Co. (1995). It strongly argues that our
perceived wisdom is the driving force behind our behaviour and that the
subject is a vital part of any effective Knowledge Management programme.

Yet in a quick survey of eighteen books on Knowledge Management, I found only three felt the subject of Wisdom was sufficiently important to mention in the index. Apart from those mentioned above, which were not essentially knowledge management books, none gave the subject of Wisdom the importance I believe it justifies. The same comment can equally apply to books on Leadership, where the whole subject of Wisdom is very rarely mentioned.

Wisdom statements

History does appear to show that it is incredibly easy to ignore and learning of the experiences of earlier millennia:

“If we still have not learned the lessons of 2000 years of history, why should we suddenly start being able to learn it now?"

Or to put that another way:
"The only lesson we appear to be able to learn from history is that we don't learn the lessons of history."

But if that is the case, what is education for?

Many of the important messages about the state and future of the Human Race were made over a thousand years ago, in China, the Middle East and other early sophisticated societies. This should, perhaps, not surprise us, as wisdom consists of insights that have stood the test of time,
precisely because they are concerned with making statements about relationships between people, either individually or in societal context, or about our relationship with the universe as a whole.

Some examples of statements about Wisdom that reflect the points made above include:

"Knowledge is a process of piling up facts; wisdom lies in their simplification."
(Martin H. Fisher)

"To know how to grow old is the masterwork of wisdom, and one of the most difficult chapters in the great art of living."
(Henri Frederic Amiel)

“Wisdom is like electricity. There is no permanently wise person, but people capable of wisdom, who, being put into certain company, or other favourable conditions, become wise for a short time, as glasses rubbed acquire electric power for a while.”
(Ralph Waldo Emerson)

"Knowledge can be communicated but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, be fortified by it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it."
(Hermann Hesse, (1877-1962, Siddartha ))

"Wisdom is the right use of knowledge. To know is not to be wise. Many people know a great deal, and are all the greater fools for it. There is no fool so great a fool as a knowing fool. But to know how to use knowledge is to have wisdom."
(Charles H. Spurgeon)

“Wisdom Outweighs any wealth”

“Wisdom is the power that enables us to use our knowledge for the benefit of ourselves and others.”
(Thomas J. Watson)

“The more knowledge we have the more wisdom we need to ensure that it is used well.”

“Wisdom is the intelligence if the system as a whole.”

“ Wise people through all laws were abolished would lead the same life.”

(Note: If this is our measure, then the vast increase in legislation over the 20th century must reflect a gowning recognition that were are all becoming less wise. Where will it end?)

And a few Wisdom quotations that are specifically related to the future:

"The purpose of studying history is not to deride human action, not to weep over it or to hate it, but to understand it -- and then to learn from it as we contemplate our future."
(Nelson Mandela)

“Concern for others is the best form of self interest”
(Desmond Tutu)
"Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell."
(Edward Abbey)

"By doubting, we come to examine, and by examining, so we perceive the truth."
(Peter Abelard)

"It is easier to fight for one's principles than to live up to them."
(Alfred Adler)

"Greatness lies not in being strong, but in the right use of strength"
(Henry Ward Beecher)

"The farther back you look, the farther forward you see."
(Winston Churchill)

"If you won't be better tomorrow than you were today then what do you
need tomorrow for?"
(Rabbi Nahman of Bratslav (1772-1811))

"Depression is the inability to construct a future."
(Rollo May (1909 -1994))

"You must be the change you want to see in the world."
(Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948))

"Education is your passport to the future. For tomorrow belongs to the
people who prepare for it today."
(Malcolm X (1925-1965))

"I touch the future: I teach."
(Christa MacAuliffe, astronaut (1948-1986))

The core issues of Leadership were well defined over two thousand years ago by Lao Tzu when he argued:

“The highest type of rule is one whose existence the people are barely aware.
Next comes one whom they love and praise.
Next comes one whom they fear.
Next comes one whom they despise and defy.
When you are lacking faith,
Others will be unfaithful to you.
The Sage is self-effacing and scanty of words.
When his(*) task is accomplished and things have been completed,
All the people say, ‘We ourselves have achieved it!’”
(Note: (*) Now ‘their’)

Perhaps you cannot teach Wisdom, but it is certainly most unlikely that it is in our genes - so, somehow, it must be learned. The question is how can we make that learning process more effective - on the assumption, of course, that we consider it an important thing to do?

The Future of Wisdom

If we want to manage complexity successfully, and make progress in the world today, we have to start by getting the simple things right. This needs to be based on more effective understanding, and use, of accumulated Wisdom. Unfortunately, all too often problems arise precisely because we haven't got the simple things right. This includes the need for a greater emphasis on sharing knowledge, rather than the more traditional concept of 'Knowledge is Power'. And we need to start by focusing on ensuring that we are asking the right questions in the first place.

In recent years we have seen efforts to move people from the idea of 'Working Harder' to 'Working Smarter'. Increasingly we need to move beyond 'Working Smarter' to 'Working Wiser'. We need to be moving from ‘The Knowledge Society’ to ‘The Wise Society’. And, the more we move along that progression, the more we need to recognise that we are moving to a situation where the important issues primarily reflect the quality of our values, rather than the quantity of our physical effort. If we want to improve the quality of our decision making the focus needs not only to be on the quality of our information but, perhaps even more importantly, on the ‘right’ use of that information.

However, as we move further into the next Millennium, both the 'Knowledge Economy' and ‘Leadership’ are being given more and more attention. As a result, we are, and need to be, increasingly concerned with what is the core knowledge, distilled through the experience of history into wisdom, that is critically important for us to preserve and pass onto future generations?

Probably the most important of those simple things to get right is for leaders to 'walk the talk'. It is relatively easy to know what is the ‘right’ thing to do - the hard thing is to ensure that it gets done.
Indeed, why does it appear to be relatively easy to recognise Wisdom, but appear to be so incredibly difficult to be wise in practice?

Of course, Wisdom is one thing, being wise is quite another. Being wise is certainly more than the ability to recycle Wisdom. In essence being wise involves the ability to apply wisdom effectively in practice. This issue is aptly reflected in the comment:

"Those who are arrogant with their wisdom are not wise." (Anon)

The wise decision inevitably includes value judgements, beliefs and feelings, as well as technical analysis. It is intimately associated with words such as ‘good’ and ‘better’. Hence it is not surprising that we find that the comments we might define as Wisdom are essentially comments about the relationship between people, or their relationship with society, and the universe as a whole. It should not surprise us that these are relatively timeless statements. Wisdom helps us provide meaning to the world about us. But what certainly surprised me when I started looking at this subject, was the paradoxical gap between how critically important this area was in all our lives, and yet how often it seems to be almost totally ignored in Futurist, Strategy, Knowledge Management or Leadership/Management literature. Another paradox is that we appear to be spending more and more time focusing on recycling information/facts, that have a relatively short shelf life, and less and less time on knowledge that overlaps with Wisdom that has a long shelf life. Why is that? What can we do about it?

It could be argued that one reason for the recent obsession with an information based approach is because that provides a relatively easy framework within which to get agreement of decisions and that, any focus on the values dimension would make decision making much more problematic. There are two answers to such concerns: First, values are implicitly involved in all our decision making, and all we are doing is making the discussions about the values dimension more explicit, which should be the core of all our Strategy, Leadership and Knowledge Management discussions. It is through making information/knowledge/values more explicit through more effective dialogue that we can improve the effectiveness of our learning processes. Secondly the evidence suggests that there is much more agreement across all cultures and religions about fundamental human values (and Wisdom) then is generally recognised. This view is confirmed by both the work of the Institute for Global Ethics, as well as an unpublished dissertation by Richard Hawley Trowbridge on The Scientific Pursuit of Wisdom, found ‘no indications of a conflict between religious and practical wisdom … and ‘little difference in levels of wisdom between women and men’. (email communication from author 01/09/2005)

Finally I come back to the point I made at the beginning. Why are we interested in the Future? The answer, I believe, is that we are concerned about trying to make the world a ‘better’ place. But for who? And how? To answer these questions we need to re-ask other fundamental questions: Why do we not spend more time to ensure that the important messages that we have learned in the past ('Wisdom') can be passed on to future generations? How do we ensure these messages are learned more effectively? These are critical strategy questions and are at the very foundation of anything we might want to call 'The Knowledge Economy', although what we really need to focus on is ‘The Wise Economy’. This focus naturally overlaps with the greater attention being given to values related issues, and ‘the search for meaning’, in recent management/leadership literature. Essentially, the need to focus on issues associated with ‘The Wise Economy’ is the Leadership challenge for us all.

I hope I have not given the impression that I know what this illusive concept of 'wisdom' actually is? Or how we can pass it on more effectively. Also I recognise there is a risk in expounding the concept of wisdom that I might be seen to be supporting the view that somehow I, or we, know all
the answers. That is certainly not the intention. The prime objective is to raise some questions that, in my view, do not appear to be asked often enough.

All I am arguing is that we urgently need to take the whole subject of Wisdom much more seriously in management/leadership literature than has been the case is the past. It is critical to our understanding of The Knowledge Economy / The Knowledge Society, as well as Strategy and Leadership in general. If we cannot take Wisdom seriously now, we never will; and we will pay a very high price for this neglect. These issues are not only important for us as individuals, but they also have a profound influence on the effectiveness of our organisations, whether they are corporate, governmental or religious.

(Note : A collection of well over 3000 ‘Wisdom based’ quotations are available on the web site of the World Future Society ‘Messages for the New Millennium’: (via projects).)

Biographical details


Bruce spent over 20 years in industry and finance before joining the academic world a decade ago to help establish the Management Centre at what is now South Bank University.

He has a degree in Chemical Engineering and a MSc (Economics) / MBA from the London Business School. (A member of their first cohort!) He obtained his PhD (by published work) in 1996 for his work on 'The Future of Offices and office Work: Implications for Organisational Strategy'.

His experience of industry included time with BP and the Commonwealth Development Finance Company, where he was concerned with investing in small companies in various parts of the world. During the 1980's he also spent sometime with ICI plc assisting in their New Ventures programme, particularly in Billingham.

Over the past twenty years he has been involved on the Executive of the Strategic Planning Society and as a Council Member of the (now) Chartered Management Institute. He was a member of the latter's Advisory Board for a research project on 'Leadership: A Challenge for All' and is still involved in a development of that project which is specifically concerned with leadership issues in the public sector. He was also involved in a study on the future of the Professions that was being undertaken by the Royal Society of Arts. He has been actively involved, as a past Chairman, with the Association of MBA's.

Since the late 1960's he has published about 200 articles on a wide range of strategy related issues, such as 'Economies of Scale', 'Energy Policy', 'The Future of Offices and Office Work', the link between Power, Responsibility, Leadership and Learning (including an article 'Leadership and Power: Where Responsibility Makes the Difference', in 'Coaching for Leadership: How the World's Greatest Coaches Help Leaders Learn', Edited by Marshall Goldsmith, Laurence Lyons and Alyssa Freas, Jossey-Bass (2000)) and more recently he has been exploring the relationship between Wisdom and Knowledge Management.

He has also undertaken over 30 interviews with leading thinkers on leadership published in 'Leadership and Organizational Development Journal', as well have done other interviews for the 'Tomorrow Project Bulletin'. He was the UK co-ordinator for ACUNU 'The Millennium Project' (1999-2004). His present interests focus on lecturing, researching and writing on Strategy and Futures related areas.

Contact details: London South Bank University, 103 Borough Road, London SE1 OAA, 02078158240 ….

email:  (and: