I have based this book on a large body of research that wrestles with the question of, “How can we act wisely?” That question has consumed the minds of great thinkers for millennia. Given that, I hope you did not come to this section looking for a comprehensive reading list, for such a list would fill a library!
My focus, performing my research and writing this book, has been on wisdom expressed in organizational settings. It has been my goal to find practical insights that people can use in their lives to develop their wisdom. The readings I suggest below I found captured that intent well.
Anderson, B. C. (2019). Values, Rationality, and Power: Developing Organizational Wisdom–A Case Study of a Canadian Healthcare Authority. Bingley, United Kingdom: Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
- This book presents my research on how values, rationality, and power interact in a complex organization. Not only does it provides a method through which researchers may study wisdom, but it also explores the concepts I discussed in this textbook with significantly more specificity and depth.
Flyvbjerg, B. (1998). Rationality and Power: Democracy in Practice. Chicago, United States: The University of Chicago Press.
- This book summarizes research performed by Bent Flyvbjerg into how power and rationality interact in a municipal setting. It shows in significant depth the means through which those with power can shape rationality to further their own goals.
Flyvbjerg, B. (2001). Making Social Science Matter: Why Social Inquiry Fails and How It Can Succeed Again. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press.
- In this book, Bent Flyvbjerg argues that social scientists have an influential role to play in developing society’s practical wisdom (or phronesis). To that end, he lays out a research paradigm that investigators may use to study and enhance the phronesis of our institutions.
Kessler, E. H., & Bailey, J. R. (Eds.). (2007). Handbook of Organizational and Managerial Wisdom. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications Inc.
- This book is a collection of scholarly writings that seeks to lay the foundation for a philosophy of wisdom. It presents a comprehensive, in-depth, and thoughtful exploration of what it means to be wise and how we might develop this attribute in society.
Ancient Greek for practical wisdom; prudence; mindfulness