What is Wisdom? Wisdom is perfect knowledge and optimal action and can only be achieved by global networks! Only Network Society can possess global wisdom!

What is Wisdom? Wisdom is perfect knowledge and optimal action and can only be achieved by global networks! Only Network Society can possess global wisdom!

What is Wisdom? There is a diversity of views of the meaning of wisdom. Wisdom is perfect knowledge and optimal action and can only be possessed by large global networks, not individuals. Wisdom Networks are the next stage in the evolutionary process that is organising every "thing" using the internet.The next stage of both economic development and the information revolution will organise the final 3 elements of wisdom in the cloud. These first three stages took decades to be crowd created. The final three stages will be crowd created in 5 years and result in a profound change in the world we live in. Only the Network Society development model can possess global wisdom because it is a consolidated network that organises every "thing". An Industrial Economy can never possess wisdom because it uses fragmentation and centralisation to organise society.

The book "Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki outlines the potential and possibility of collective wisdom. It also identifies the 4 attributes of crowds that would result in crowds making better decisions than hierarchies or individuals.

Wikipedia - Wisdom definition

Wisdom is the ability to think and act using knowledge, experience, understanding, common sense, and insight. Wisdom has been regarded as one of four cardinal virtues; and as a virtue, it is a habit or disposition to perform the action with the highest degree of adequacy under any given circumstance. This implies a possession of knowledge or the seeking thereof to apply it to the given circumstance. This involves an understanding of people, objects, events, situations, and the willingness as well as the ability to apply perception, judgement, and action in keeping with the understanding of what is the optimal course of action. It often requires control of one's emotional reactions (the "passions") so that the universal principle of reason prevails to determine one's action. In short, wisdom is a disposition to find the truth coupled with an optimum judgement as to what actions should be taken.

An individual can not have wisdom

In today's modern world, it is not possible for an individual to have wisdom. There are 3 tiers of possessing wisdom. They simply cannot know everything to possess perfect knowledge about a specific matter in the world. If an individual could be knowledgeable, they can not have reason, or control of their emotional reaction. Thirdly, they can not apply action or implement a cause of action in a global community. It is impossible for an individual in a global community to possess perfect knowledge and apply action. It is possible, in earlier years of society development when isolated groups knew nothing more than their local village that one individual could possess knowledge and apply action in a world which stretched no further than the horizon.

Only large networks can achieve wisdom

The truth or knowledge about any matter is held by large groups of people spread throughout the world. These can be bought together in a network so that the combined group has perfect knowledge. Similarly, that group can also meet the other elements of wisdom. It can apply that knowledge and determine optimal action. The network can also direct effort and action to pursue outcomes. Global knowledge can be revealed through a network and global action can be organised through a network. Only a network encompassing a global community of common interest can have wisdom.

Crowds make better decisions than individuals (given 4 attributes)

The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki suggested that four elements were required to form a wise crowd. According to Surowiecki, these key criteria separate wise crowds from irrational ones:

  • diversity of opinion (each person should have some private information, even if its just an eccentric interpretation of known facts),
  • independence (people's opinions are not determined by the opinions of those around them)
  • decentralization (people are able to specialise and draw on local knowledge)
  • aggregation (some mechanism exists for turning private judgements into a collective decision)

Based on Surowiecki’s book, Oinas-Kukkonen captures the wisdom of crowds approach with the following eight conjectures:

  • It is possible to describe how people in a group think as a whole.
  • In some cases, groups are remarkably intelligent and are often smarter than the smartest people in them.
  • The three conditions for a group to be intelligent are diversity, independence, and decentralization.
  • The best decisions are a product of disagreement and contest.
  • Too much communication can make the group as a whole less intelligent.
  • Information aggregation functionality is needed.
  • The right information needs to be delivered to the right people in the right place, at the right time, and in the right way.
  • There is no need to chase the expert.

6 elements of wisdom

With the Wikipedia in mind and drawing upon the inspiration of the DIKW Pyramid, we extended the four basic elements to provide greater detail by including community and collaboration.

The six elements and the necessary attributes of each stage are discussed in The 6 stages to achieve personal, organisation, industry and global wisdom in the 'Internet of Things'" and summarised in the following slide:

We use this to outline key trends in economic development and the evolution of technology. Every "thing" (categorised as 6 elements of wisdom) are converging into networks in an escalating path which crowd creates successive stages of wisdom.


Society has been quietly crowd creating the foundation for Network Society by moving 'things' to the cloud. Each of the first three stages have been moved to the cloud faster. The community crowd created data (ie the internet) in 30 years. It crowd created information (ie the World Wide Web) in 15 years. It crowd created community ((ie social networks) in 7 years. 100 times more addressable data means 10,000 times more patterns (or knowledge) and "a profound change in the economics of the world we live in". The final three elements will be crowd created in years by using networks to simply linking the "things" put into the cloud in the first three stages in the internet of every thing.

Changing technology

The technologies that are used at each stage of economic development change. Information technologies have evolved from stone tablet to today's web site that distributes information. The foundation has been laid for collective wisdom by crowd creating the first three elements of wisdom. The next stage is simply the deployment of wisdom networks that crowd creates the remaining three wisdom elements. Wisdom networks link every "thing" together to focus the wisdom of crowds globally to achieve collective wisdom (knowledge and prioritised action)

Physical vs Virtual methods to organise society

Currently, the Industrial Economy is considered the only choice available to organise society. Network Society is also available as a means to achieve societal and economic outcomes.

Hardware vs Software defined communities

Industrial Economy vs Network Society

Industrial Economy only puts two "things" in the cloud. Wisdom Networks enable Network Society by putting all 6 "things" in the cloud and enable collective wisdom. An Industrial Economy can never possess wisdom because it's underlying method to organise is fragmentation and centralisation. Only global consolidated networks can possess wisdom.

Wisdom books exchange global, collective wisdom from person to person

Wisdom Books are the basis of knowledge and action. The community assembles every "thing" in a book (just like they do with social networks). They can then give a link to that book (or knowledge) to a third party. It can also be used to organise action. It becomes the basis of knowledge and action in the past, present and future.

Fragmented Information to Collective Wisdom

In an Industrial Economy, a single piece of information is sent between people working in millions of isolated physical structures. In a Network Society, wisdom is organised by the community in books that can be shared with anyone, anywhere. Millions of structures containing information evolve into a few networks organising wisdom.

Reclaiming life and knowledge lost in the Information Revolution

Where is the Life we have lost in living?
Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?”
T.S. Elliott

Wisdom Networks reclaim the wisdom and life lost in the information age.