Dr. Lauren A. Rickards, Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute, The University of Melbourne, Australia
In: Journal of Environmental Policy & Planning, Volume 14, Issue 4, 2012, pp.481-483
As the ‘wicked’ and ‘messy’ nature of contemporary problems becomes increasingly apparent, the need to better understand and appropriately engage with the complex systems we are part of is of growing importance. Systems Practice: How to Act in a Climate Change World is rich in insight into the challenges and joys of developing this was of thinking and acting. It is itself a highly valuable but challenging book, in part because of the depth of the problems in modern society it reveals (including, for example, the very concept of ‘problems’, with its implicit simplistic corollary: ‘solutions’). It is also challenging because of the richness of strategies it provides for engaging with these ‘problems’ and becoming a ‘systems practitioner’... Its breadth and depth of thinking is stimulating and the intellectual and emotional challenges it poses reflect the situations we are in rather than weaknesses with the book itself, which is instead carefully and cleverly crafted.