EP80 Daniel Schmachtenberger on Better Sensemaking

Daniel Schmachtenberger talks to Jim about sensemaking & how it’s impacted by algorithms, addiction, authority, conspiracy, education, and much more…

Daniel Schmachtenberger

Daniel Schmachtenberger talks to Jim about the increasing importance of sensemaking in our globalized culture, internet algorithm impacts on narrative warfare, digital dopamine hijacking & addiction dynamics, dangerous contemporary authority dynamics, global government vs governance & other coordinating processes, the history of democracy, the essential role of education, sensemaking with hyperobjects in global complexity, the danger of certainty & challenge of acting in uncertainty, conspiracy theory & combating bias, valuing disagreement, building sensemaking institutions, new forms of public education, and much more.

Episode Transcript

Mentions & Recommendations

Daniel Schmachtenberger is a founding member of The Consilience Project, aimed at improving public sensemaking and dialogue. The throughline of his interests has to do with ways of improving the health and development of individuals and society, with a virtuous relationship between the two as a goal. Towards these ends, he’s had particular interest in the topics of catastrophic and existential risk, civilization and institutional decay and collapse as well as progress, collective action problems, social organization theories, and the relevant domains in philosophy and science. Motivated by the belief that advancing collective intelligence and capacity is foundational to the integrity of any civilization, and necessary to address the unique risks we currently face given the intersection of globalization and exponential technology, he has spoken publicly on many of these topics, hoping to popularize and deepen important conversations and engage more people in working towards their solutions. Many of these can be found here.

4 thoughts on “EP80 Daniel Schmachtenberger on Better Sensemaking

  1. Hey, this is a fun episode that criss-crosses the talking points of myself, Forrest Landry, Michel Bauwens, Jordan Hall, ZAk Stein, etc.

    Cheers, and let’s re-convene soon.

    – Robert Conan Ryan

  2. “Liquid Democracy” and delegated voting were briefly mentioned: Just wanted to thank you for that and point to some more resources about it:

    – Its Wikipedia page has a bunch of examples from various organization types
    – LiquidFeedback.org and Loomio.org are 2 of several softwares that implements collaborative decision-making principles

  3. So the goal is to build systems that coordinate and develop emergent human collective intelligence.

    – Civic Education/Empirical Capacity
    – Enlightenment of value systems of respectful sense making
    – Eventually end of viral content replication
    – Create short ingestible resources of progressive philosophical thought

  4. Thank you for, as usual making some excellent points. In particular “epistemic nihilism” leading to “tribalism” leading to “polarization” that can be “nudged” in the right direction with very little effort because of the underlying “algorithm”, all fueled by “dopamine”. Just to push back a little though, I think it has always been this way. My children don’t seem as gullible as first glance would seem. And besides, addiction is only the second worse healthcare issue in the world (covid is way down the list).
    Mark Elliott MD
    Dept of Anesthesia
    Providence Healthcare
    Vancouver, BC

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