Beyond Polarization – Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

From Technology Review

This past June, I attended a conference in New York City with colleagues from around the world. After our three days together, my European, Indian, and Latin American friends were a bit vexed. The conversation kept getting pulled into the lightning storm of American politics. We struggled to pay attention as our phones flooded with alerts about congressional primaries, Supreme Court decisions, executive orders, and the flurry of terrified, furious, indignant, or despairing comments ping-ponging between political extremes.

Over beers, a few of us “coastal liberal elite” academics and journalists huddled and commiserated about our extended family members in South Dakota, North Carolina, Florida, and Indiana. How could they deny the reality of Sandy Hook, climate change, and science in general? I suspect those same relatives are similarly confused—why are we so eager to support illegal immigrants, anti-police protests, and lawlessness in general?

This polarization is only increasing as we head to the midterm elections. With our country split into factions like anti-fascists, progressives, moderates, libertarians, evangelicals, and Trumpists, it’s increasingly difficult to know how to engage with others who don’t share our views.

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How to keep conversation alive in a polarized world – Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

From TedxBocaRaton 

In our polarized world, it is easy for conversations to get stuck. How can we find new pathways forward on the big issues of our time, whether at the holiday dinner table, in our organizations, or on the wider political stage? Facilitator and author Jason Jay from MIT Sloan explores what happens inside ourselves when conversations go off the rails. He offers a tool called transformative contrasting to help people get unstuck and even harness the creative energy of polarization. His research focuses on how people navigate the tensions between personal, business, and social goals in sustainability efforts. His first book is Breaking Through Gridlock: The Power of Conversation in a Polarized World and he has published articles in the Academy of Management Journal and California Management Review. He teaches courses on strategy, innovation, and leadership for sustainable business at MIT, and engages students and alumni in hands-on projects with leading companies and organizations.

Watch the full talk above or at TEDxBocaRaton.

Jason Jay is a Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management and Director of the Sustainability Initiative at MIT Sloan.

Join the #MITSloanExperts “Breaking Through Gridlock” Twitter chat, June 5

Breaking Through Gridlock, by Jason J. Jay

Breaking Through Gridlock, by Jason J. Jay

Professor Jason J. Jay, author of Breaking Through Gridlock, will discuss the power of conversation in overcoming polarization via effective and positive conversation during the #MITSloanExperts Twitter chat on Monday, June 5th at 12 p.m. EDT. Jason will join his co-author, Gabriel Grant, to discuss how we can fuel healthy dialogues and innovation to enrich relationships and create powerful pathways forward. You can search the #MITSloanExperts and #BreakingGridlock hashtags to join the conversation in real time.

Professor Jason J. Jay is a Senior Lecturer at the MIT Sloan School of Management and the director of the Sustainability Initiative at MIT Sloan. He holds a bachelor’s in psychology and a master’s in education from Harvard and a doctorate in management from MIT.

Gabriel Grant is the CEO of Human Partners and cofounder of the Byron Fellowship Education Foundation. He holds a master’s in leadership and sustainability from Yale and a master’s in ecological systems engineering and a bachelor’s in physics from Purdue.

The Paris accord is #OurAccord – Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

From The Huffington Post 

The UN international climate change negotiations in Paris, COP21, concluded on Saturday. The outcome: 196 countries came to the table, and committed to preventing the worst effects of climate change. For the first time, developing countries recognized their future responsibility, while developed nations acknowledged their historic contribution. Together they set out an aggressive goal to keep global warming below 1.5 degrees C. Like countless others, I eagerly shared the news on my Facebook feed and I rushed to explain the significance to my five-year-old son.

Reading responses to the COP21 accord in the news and social media, however, revealed a wide mix of reactions. Some share my enthusiasm; others are more tentative, wondering how “they” can follow through on targets that are aspirational and not binding. There is a chorus of critiques, from multiple sides of the political spectrum. Many have validity, particularly those grounded in the science who have run the numbers on future warming.

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How tech can stop the looming food crisis — Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

MIT Sloan Senior Lecturer Jason Jay

From Fortune

The world’s population is expected to increase from 7 billion today to 9 or 10 billion by the end of the century, according to the United Nations. We also can expect more pressure on the food supply as people in the developing world adopt middle class lifestyles, which usually involve eating more meat. To satisfy global demand, we will need to roughly double today’s output, which means getting smarter about how we produce and manage food.

The good news is that innovation is coming to the farm. Advanced information technology, improved communications systems, robotics, drones, and other new technologies have the potential to boost agricultural yields and reduce waste while tempering environmental degradation.

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