In these turbulent and uncertain times, the imperative transformation of our society, businesses and institutions calls for deepening our understanding and practice of leadership. Some people talk about “Wise Leadership”: What does that mean? Does that make sense? What does it take? Can it be learned? Am I concerned?
These are just some of the questions we will address in our new annual cycle of conferences and seminars to be held in Brussels between October 2012 and June 2013.
While last year’s cycle on the Intelligence of Nature had been built on published books in English and French by J. Baird Callicott, this year’s cycle is built on works to be published in 2013:
- Mark Strom’s “Wise: Leading for better futures”, and
- Mike Thompson’s worldwide survey on leadership and wisdom.
Mark will be our speaker for our opening conference on October 11th 2012, while Mike will be the one for our closing conference on June 13th 2013.
In between, each month we will investigate key dimensions, attributes, or virtues of “wise leadership” (care, courage, discernment, authority…) and various paths that may lead toward it. In each seminar we will explore to what extent wise leadership is an aspiration, a necessity, and an art:
- Aspiration: Is this virtue an impossible ideal or a quality that can be cultivated? What is the relationship between this virtue and wisdom? How does this virtue manifest itself in acts? What are the signs that somebody possesses this virtue?
- Necessity: Is this virtue necessary for leaders and managers today? How might it help to bring much-needed change in management today?
- Art: How can we develop this virtue in ourselves and around us? What are the practices or exercises that can help us to do so? How can this virtue be distorted into a vice? To what should we attend when pursuing it?
We will be accompanied by wonderful guides and scholars on this unusual journey. While coming from diverse backgrounds and influences (European & American philosophers, Tibetan Buddhists, Aboriginal teachers, Chinese & Japanese Zen monks, English rabbis, Hindu Vedantists, Benedictine monks,…), each speaker shares this quality: they walk their talk.
We believe that wisdom for leadership does not derive through intellectual reflection alone. Accordingly, for the day following each seminar, our partner EquisWorld will organize a practical workshop with our speaker to explore more deeply and practically the concepts and ideas he or she will have shared with us the day before.
Before detailing our program below, you might wonder:
- Why our program is now written in a mix of French & English while, except for the opening and closing conferences, our seminars are held in French?
- Why do we send our programs and newsletters even to those who live too far away from Brussels to be likely to attend?
Our response is the same to both questions: The objective of Philo & Management, a not-for-profit organization, is to stimulate reflection on management among managers and non-managers alike. We do this through regular in-depth dialogues with philosophers and other intellectuals. We therefore want to engage not only the participants at our seminars, but also others through reading our program, monthly newsletters and seminars reports, or accessing other resources (articles, podcasts, videos) on our website. And we do engage some: our website already receives more than 100,000 hits a month from all over the world. As this new cycle shows, we are able to invite more and more international speakers, and we hope some of them will be invited to give further seminars in English (many of them are fluent in English). Thus there is growing use of English while the bulk of our activities remains in French.
PhiloMa’s growing activities require resources that the seminars alone cannot generate. Practically, we need volunteers’ time to upload and tag documents on our website and we need financial support for website development and administrative support. So, if you want to give some of your time, do not hesitate to contact us. And if you want to make a financial donation, please click here.