This episode of State of Emergence, features an additional conversation with last week’s featured guest, the evolutionary biologist and important social theorist David Sloan Wilson. 

If you haven’t already listened to last week’s episode with David — episode 069, titled “A Human Superorganism — The Higher Potentials of Cooperation” — we encourage you to begin there for a more concise and concentrated overview of his ideas. In this separate unedited conversation (which took place beforehand) David and Terry go into the practical application of his ideas at greater length and explored many nuanced distinctions, principles, and practices — it gives us valuable insight into some of the design principles and practices that can enable social experiments and cooperative communities to succeed and grow. 

They consider the virtues and exploitations of competition, multiple layers of competition, genetic vs. cultural steams of evolution, the role of symbols in evolving our cultural narratives, and the Nobel laureate and political economist Elinor Ostrom’s eight principles for “managing a commons.”)

If you belong to and participate in a community of any kind, we hope this deep dive into the dynamics of cooperation serves you and inspires a new level of practice and efficacy in your group’s efforts.

For more information on David Sloan Wilson and Terry Patten, check out the following resources:

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We will be exploring this episode in greater depth during our next State of Emergence live Q&A (date and time to be announced soon). If you haven’t already joined us, we invite you to become a Friend of State of Emergence and join these monthly Q&A sessions with me and other listeners episodes, as well as help the podcast become financially sustainable. A vibrant, intelligent, and caring community is already gathering around State of Emergence and we’d love for you to be part of it. Sign up here.

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