Low-tech Solutions?

In a world more and more enamored with technology and high-tech solutions to difficult problems, the unintended consequences of technology are becoming more evident.  It’s not just the cost and the fact that high-tech solutions are usually only accessible to those in developed countries, but there is also the added environmental costs of energy usage, pollution during the manufacturing process, scrap and non-reusability of parts, etc.  The list goes on.

But sometimes, complex problems can be better solved with a low-tech solution.  I came across this TED talk recently about the use of rodents in clearing land mines and also in detecting tuberculosis.  Both of these tasks could be done with sophisticated machinery, but the fact is, they can also be done simply and less expensively with some “outside the box” thinking.

As a former biologist I hit my head with a “why didn’t I think of that”?  I guess we are all becoming blinded by the growing cultural myopia that technology is the only answer.

See for yourself. I for one am going to put on my low-tech thinking cap.  How about you?

Tight Lines . . .

About johnrchildress

John Childress is a pioneer in the field of strategy execution, culture change, executive leadership and organization effectiveness, author of several books and numerous articles on leadership, an effective public speaker and workshop facilitator for Boards and senior executive teams. In 1978 John co-founded The Senn-Delaney Leadership Consulting Group, the first international consulting firm to focus exclusively on culture change, leadership development and senior team alignment. Between 1978 and 2000 he served as its President and CEO and guided the international expansion of the company. His work with senior leadership teams has included companies in crisis (GPU Nuclear – owner of the Three Mile Island Nuclear Plants following the accident), deregulated industries (natural gas pipelines, telecommunications and the breakup of The Bell Telephone Companies), mergers and acquisitions and classic business turnaround scenarios with global organizations from the Fortune 500 and FTSE 250 ranks. He has designed and conducted consulting engagements in the US, UK, Europe, Middle East, Africa, China and Asia. Currently John is an independent advisor to CEO’s, Boards, management teams and organisations on strategy execution, corporate culture, leadership team effectiveness, business performance and executive development. John was born in the Cascade Mountains of Oregon and eventually moved to Carmel Highlands, California during most of his business career. John is a Phi Beta Kappa scholar with a BA degree (Magna cum Laude) from the University of California, a Masters Degree from Harvard University and was a PhD candidate at the University of Hawaii before deciding on a career as a business entrepreneur in the mid-70s. In 1968-69 he attended the American University of Beirut and it was there that his interest in cultures, leadership and group dynamics began to take shape. John Childress resides in London and the south of France with his family and is an avid flyfisherman, with recent trips to Alaska, the Amazon River, Tierra del Fuego, and Kamchatka in the far east of Russia. He is a trustee for Young Virtuosi, a foundation to support talented young musicians. You can reach John at john@johnrchildress.com or john.childress@theprincipiagroup.com
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1 Response to Low-tech Solutions?

  1. This comment just came in from Rodrigo Dauster on my facebook site but thought it was worth sharing on this blog as well:

    “Absolutely. Such initiatives need to be supported lest they fail like this other wonderful one: Flowers that bloom red if there are landmines underneath http://www.facebook.com/l/60e3b/www.worldchanging.com/archives/009012.html


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