Evolution of an Idea

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We have been hearing a lot that idea is more powerful and viral than anything else in the world. Personally, it gives great pleasure to realize that an idea is powerful than person who envisioned it or any institution that backs up the idea. The reason behind this logic is: idea is immortal whereas person and institution are not. And trust me, having faith on the idea clears all possible threats, challenges and limitations. A person and institution might not be able to blend in with newer circumstances as we know evolution is the process and it is happening every moment. Idea on the other hand can enter in a perfect symbiosis depending upon the need in unique environment. For example: let’s talk about a non-violence approach taken by Mahatma Gandhi. An idea he established was so powerful than any weapon that it was endorsed by Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King Jr. who courageously stood on the idea of non violent movement. Although circumstances were different in three different continents and way of executing it might have been unique, idea as such even made the leaders immortal.

In addition to that, there is one major thing that affects the speed of social change. Based on the example mentioned above, it took tirelessly decade of years to actual sense idea to make an impact in three different places. The reason behind is that the social changes and transformations are slow processes which depend greatly in the supportive environment for it to flourish. Hence, it is insane to expect while replicating same idea in different place to produce similar outcomes. Factors like social, economic and political situations play huge role in the germination and growth of an idea. To my understanding these factors affect the citizen psychologically and this would create barriers enough to quarantine any idea before putting it in practice. As told earlier, a person and an institution like a community are skeptical to any idea that is being introduced which is quite normal. But this actually is biggest concern for any individual or organizations (GOs, NGOs, INGOs or private institutes) as any projects, innovations and interventions might just oppose prevalent tradition and practices of the community.

There are various steps in understanding the level of social change which if understood wisely could give a pretty good understanding in tracking down evolution of an idea. Although it might be different than what one had learnt from professors or lecturers, my learning from Dr. S.B. Thakur who inspired me to become a social architect is blended with my own realizations and learning from other inspirational.

First Step: Informing or creating awareness

To introduce a new concept or an idea, first it is essential to inform or aware targeted individuals or community about it. This triggers the people about the concerns or issues that they are not aware of and which exist outside their vicinity or even their comfort zone. There are lot of ways and techniques to make people aware about an idea. Print media and audio media are in huge practices in today’s time. Culturally established street drama has recently been considered as an important tool as it’s just more than telling idea in audio or visual level. It is more like having person to person connection. Community fms and radios actually have done enormously huge job in making people aware through a lot of programs.

Recently introduced by massively outreaching media like social media brings in the opportunity to broadcast the idea worldwide. Actually, the idea of awareness is a greater outreach, which if executed effectively and efficiently, reaches to targeted community and individuals in best possible way. Targeted people can be from different age groups, genders, religions, traditions, political views or anything that makes their psychology unique than others. Based on which, the technique in which awareness can be done and type of media can be adopted.


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looking forward to read more

it is absolutely interesting and intriguing to know more about how ideas are generated and how these ideas can take shapes and bring a change through prototype and experimentation. There is a need to have more and more people involved in social sector to think about themselves differently: yes we should all consider ourselves as social architect and let' start a serous discussion on design thinking.

In mood for next one soon...

Thanks Simone. Yes, to start up with an idea it is always best to start up with prototype. I believe the urgency of understanding the concept of Social Architecture is huge as development agencies are mushrooming greatly. And the worse part is, most of them really have less idea on complex society which gets provoked by even small unwanted pokes. They should also understand that to have an idea evolve and get endorsed by the society takes pretty long period than expected. So expecting for quick return or impact might not be possible, however, it can be guaged in different stages of social change. Patience is a great virtue.


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