Introducing keynote speakers:

Otto Scharmer

Dr. Otto Scharmer, Sr Lecturer at MIT, co-founder of the Presencing Institute & the MITx u.lab , author of Theory U & The Essentials of Theory U.

KEYNOTE:
Theory U and Presencing for an Integral World

Fundamental problems, as Einstein once noted, cannot be solved at the same level of thought that created them. What we pay attention to, and how we pay attention – both individually and collectively – is key to what we create.

What often prevents us from “attending” is what Scharmer calls our “blind spot,” the inner place from which each of us operates. Learning to become aware of our blind spot is critical to bringing forth the profound systemic changes so needed in business and society today.

First introduced in Presence, the “U” methodology of leading profound change is expanded and deepened in Theory U. By moving through the “U” process we learn to connect to our essential Self in the realm of presencing – a term coined by Scharmer that combines the present with sensing.

Here we are able to see our own blind spot and pay attention in a way that allows us to experience the opening of our minds, our hearts, and our wills. This wholistic opening constitutes a shift in awareness that allows us to learn from the future as it emerges, and to realize that future in the world. 

In 2015, Otto co-founded the MITx u.lab, a massive open online course (MOOC) for leading profound change, which has since activated a global eco-system of societal and personal renewal involving more than 140,000 users from 185 countries.

In 2019, he launched an annual innovation infrastructure called Societal Transformation Lab that supports place-based teams on reinventing economies, advancing democracies and regenerating learning and leadership systems worldwide.

About Dr. Otto Scharmer

Dr. Otto Scharmer is a Senior Lecturer in the MIT Management Sloan School and co-founder of the Presencing Institute. He chairs the MIT IDEAS program for cross-sector innovation and introduced the concept of presencing”—learning from the emerging future—in his bestselling books Theory U and Presence (the latter co-authored with P. Senge et al).

He is co-author of Leading from the Emerging Future, which outlines eight acupuncture points for transforming capitalism. His most recent book, The Essentials of Theory U, outlines the core principles and applications of awareness-based systems change.

Dr. Scharmer earned his diploma and PhD in economics from Witten/Herdecke University in Germany. A member of the World Future Council, he received the Jamieson Prize for Teaching Excellence at MIT, and the European Leonardo Corporate Learning Award. The United Nations Deputy Secretary-General appointed him to the UN Learning Advisory Council for the 2030 Agenda.

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