After complexity, wickedity

A wicked problem, according to Blackman et al. (2006) is one that is not easily defined, has many causal levels and cannot be solved by generic principles or linear heuristics. Tame problems, on the other hand, are well-defined, stable and belong to a class of problems which can be resolved generically. In contrast to wicked problems, the solutions to tame problems are easily recognised as being either right or wrong. In education and schooling, wicked problems are considered erroneously to be tame and as a result illegitimate ‘solutions’ are attempted with the result that many simply do not work.

Extracted from Anne, B. & Wright, N. (2009). The Wicked and Complex in Education: Developing a Transdisciplinary Perspective for Policy Formulation, Implementation and Professional Practice. Journal of Education for Teaching: International Research and Pedagogy, 35 (3), pp. 241-256

Wickedity, complexity… new wine in old wineskins?

4 Replies to “After complexity, wickedity”

  1. wicked problems need wicked solutions? what if we treat tame problems with wicked solutions? do they turn wicked?

  2. i think that’s what happens cher. and vice versa, when we treat wicked problems with tame solutions and nothing happens and we wonder why. but i’m not sure. these two concepts don’t have breakthrough work yet and a lot that has been discussed is still fuzzy.

  3. i love how politically correctly the term “wicked” sounds for problems that seem insurmountable by traditional methods.

    is this your path to dr. ye?

  4. Haha, no it’s not.. but maybe will glean some ideas from here. it’s a long way till then, long long way.

    I’m looking forward to seeing you when you return to SG in April!

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