Stories not Formulas

by | Dec 22, 2020 | Change, ICT4D |

Formulas and Stories

So many of us are looking for formulas, not stories. We want the certainty of x + y = z. While stories are formulaic at a high level, they also are specific. Stories are about specific people in a specific location and context.

We want the blanket rule, the one rule to apply to every situation. But practical ethics doesn’t work like that. There are few technology choices that work as a formula. Technology choices and digital transformation depend on numerous factors including the challenge, choices, contributors, culture, and context.

Formulas take away responsibility and enable us to shift the blame. Ethics is all about owning the choices we make, being conscious of them. Ethics understands it is about weighing options in a particular situation and then deciding.

Unfortunately most of our education systems and our organisations have conditioned us to look for the formula. Ethics needs stories that we can learn from, glean insight from, and see different perspectives.

When digital transformation is without ethical discussions, debates, and stories. It’s just a formula and not a transformation at all.

Photo by Mimi Thian

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