Living at the Border – between multiculturality, complexity and action research

The author looks into the phases of her personal experience in order to present the difficulties as well as the richness of ‘living at the border’ and of building bridges between different worlds. The prevailing Anglo-Saxon culture, above all in the world of research, obliges those who do not belong to this culture to undergo a form of tension between adaptation to language rules and ways of thinking that are foreign to them, and the need to maintain cultural and personal differences while trying to communicate. The experience of ‘contagion’ between ideas and ways of representing the world, that was seen within the Environment and School Initiatives Project (ENSI) project and that the author had the opportunity to share with John Elliott, shows the possibilities offered by these encounters. Issues such as those of the complexity and quality of learning have interweaved with those of action research and evaluation, and have crossed and enriched the values and cultures of which we were implicitly and explicitly the bearers. In the final section the author makes an attempt to illustrate the risks of today’s globalisation and the tendency to eliminate borders, viewed as obstacles to individual freedom, for a kind of equalisation which, by eliminating the differences, also eliminates the possibility of development and of creativity.

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About Giorgio Bertini

Director at Learning Change Project - Research on society, culture, art, neuroscience, cognition, critical thinking, intelligence, creativity, autopoiesis, self-organization, rhizomes, complexity, systems, networks, leadership, sustainability, thinkers, futures ++
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