Exploring perspectives on complexity, problems and wellbeing | He ketuketutanga

The WWP is all about developing a deeper level of understanding on the root cause of complex wellbeing challenges in the Waikato and facilitating breakthrough- however small. To make progress in this area demands a different way of thinking to traditional strategy and policy-making, with different tools and different perspectives. In his short e-book “Wicked Problems in Public Policy” Brian Head explores the controversial and messy nature of the big challenges facing us all, reflecting on the impossibility of finding ‘correct’ and comprehensive answers.  

Head explores the characteristics of wicked and complex problems, with reference to the UN SDGs. He observes that wicked problems tend to combine (a) complexity (b) uncertainty and (c) divergence of values. His book explores aspects of complex policy across several SDG areas and in different geographies. 

The book concludes that…
“improvements in the management of wicked problems are clearly possible, and some policies are more effective than others in addressing large and enduring social and environmental problems. Several factors increase the possibility that significant progress can be achieved—the quality and judgement of leaders, sufficient information, financial resources, the capacities of analysts and managers, reliable partners and cross-sector coordination. …The terms in which problems are framed will shape the ‘meaningfulness’ of possible solutions. But where problems seem to become more serious over time, or where the same problem seems to be recurring with growing ferocity, more robust policy design processes are necessary, including strengthening the capacity of systems to address crises and uncertainties” (Head B, 2022,139)

You can read the entire book on line here: 1654471871418 (