Is information in your city easy to come by? or is it difficult to make sense of your city because information is scarce or misaligned?
Information in the Integral City is critical to the city’s functioning, wellbeing and thriving. But when we are overwhelmed by electronic news blasts it can be difficult to know what to pay attention to, because over-stimulation can make us shut down. Ironically in the midst of the internet’s mediation of our news frenzy we can feel socially cut off from our nearest neighbours.
How can information that is Integrally In-Formed prevent both the overwhelm and help us interpret what really matters?
Firstly we can use the 4 quadrants of the Integral City map to be mindful that we are receiving and noticing information through all our lenses. For instance, consider information that is useful for your neighbourhood’s transportation system – how would you answer these questions?
- How safe do I feel in all the ways I travel?
- What modes of travel do I use? walking, bicycling, busing, rail, car driving, flying?
- What relationships impact the way I travel? family, friends, work colleagues, strangers?
- How does the city maintain city transportation systems? roads, buses, railway, airports?
We can use this simple system to filter the information overwhelm that too often deluges us. And we can also use it as a simple checklist to gain information from all 4 quadrants, when we are in dialogue with others about anything in the city that is important to us. Those conversations can be easily catalyzed by simple starting questions such as:
- Why is this [issue] important to you (how is it valuable, or not)?
- What is working?
- What is not working?
- What could work better?
The answers to these questions can then be sorted into the categories of the 4 quadrants noted above.
Using this simple integrally informed information gathering and management system, organizes our personal and collective realities (of thought/feelings, actions, relationships and systems). It creates an intelligent, wholes systems way of impacting and actually in-forming our decisions, behaviours, cultures and economic opportunities.