Complex world, simple solutions
When George Orwell conceived the plot of his novel “1984”, his contemporaries did not imagine that the emerging complexities he portrayed about that society would be the writer’s suspicions about the world we live in seventy-five years after the creation of the masterful work of the British citizen, born in India.
As seen in two Oruelian texts, “Farm Animal” and “1984”, the world of the 21st century is complex. Uncertainty is the common denominator, and no absolute certainty can tell us that we are moving in the right direction.
Threats loom again from totalitarianism – now from the “left” and the neo-Nazi resurgence – from populism and a global society super-monitored by state-of-the-art electronic equipment, but it remains insecure.
The dangers of this time in which we live come to us from infinite directions and are related to seemingly insignificant topics. Hence, scientists spend much time unraveling these threats to contemporary life.
The complexity is not only verified at the base of society but also in the highest spheres of the nuclei of power, public and private because their actions are more mediated than before.
Although we have overcome the nervousness of the ideological confrontation of the Cold War, no one is certain today, for example, of which incidents could unleash a global conflagration that wipes out a good part of the living beings on Earth.
To govern in these times of complexity and turbulence, it is necessary to make use of the principle proposed by René Descartes that to face complex problems, one must “start with the simplest and easiest to discern systems and then eventually ascend to the understanding of the more complex.”
All the technological and scientific advances we have experienced since the Second World War until now have not been enough to summon us to thoughts that give us certainty about the future.
Although, for most Westerners, the unipolarity in which the world fell from 1989 guaranteed greater certainty, we have learned over the years that this hypothesis was not entirely true since democracy, beyond the ballot box, faces new challenges: public corruption as a phenomenon that alienates resources that should be directed to vulnerable families, although it is an issue as old as man, in these times it does not go unnoticed.
On the issue of transparency and combating corruption, concern has moved beyond the spheres of directors of public or private entities dedicated to monitoring them. At this time, more citizens are aware that every time a public official takes billions of pesos into personal accounts–as has happened in the country–his quality of life is limited.
It is not enough to approve legislation, regulations, and access barriers to public budgets. Still, it is also essential that the President of the Republic has a political will to reduce the chances of an assault on the treasury. That also does not guarantee that someone who wants to break the rules does not appear; the important thing is that those who run the public administration do not place obstacles to sanctions and are willing to punish it.
With this gesture, we contribute to the quality of democracy. Another issue that makes it a more confusing paradigm is the participation of citizens in decisions so that you can have an open government, in which there is transparency and participation, which improves the performance of the public administration. . That’s what it’s about.
The profound transformations that today’s democracy deserves require many years of construction. It requires understanding everyone who has a public office in the sense that the official is a temporary instrument to design, execute and supervise public policies. Not following that path means regressing as a society, becoming a failed State that is not capable of having control of its programs and policies. Management in public administration must be effective and show signs of understanding of the problems of today’s society so that citizens feel that they are part of the solution, opening spaces in which they can participate. Civic space is the lifeline of an open government, not of a clique that, with pre-designed schemes,
The challenges of this century are more challenging than before. Efforts to confront them must be more creative, starting with education, where many of the problems that overwhelm modern societies converge, and the Dominican Republic is no exception.
Quality and access to education have innovative tools to advance. Our education system has to be seen with simple formulas that untie the knot of the complex. The education system works better when all actors participate and access information.
The proliferation of the media due to the Digital Age, instead of being a problem, constitutes an opportunity to manage actions from the State.