On our journey to explore how principles from evolution and other sciences can help us redefine a concept of ‘scaling up’ in development, we came across this simple yet extremely effective visualization of how species evolve (HT @hereissimone).
What do you reckon:
Could you see the “story” of development projects been told this way for the benefit of project managers and donors? Here’s one example of this idea in action.
The environment, geography, animal behavior, biodiversity, and competition—both intra- and interspecies—are all continually in flux, meaning the “peaks” on the fitness landscape of the world are always shifting.
And as they shift, so do the successful genotypes that are able to climb up them. In essence, that’s how evolution works on a very macro scale: Because the rules of success for a specific ecological niche are always changing, the ideal solution also must change.
We’ve connected to by Bjørn Østman of Michigan State University who designed the visualization to share our thinking and some early insights from sciences that we feel could apply to building successful initiatives in international development.
We hope to continue this discussion and see to what extent approaches he is using could be redesigned for our context in development.
Stayed tuned for more.