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Xi GmbH was set up in 2009 by Johannes Meier to provide support for mastering coordination tasks in complex organizational and inter-organizational settings.

 There is a visible increase in problems where conventional steering and problem solving mechanisms are failing.
 Top-down steering in the form of financial compliance or performance compliance can often not deal adequately with increasing decentral complexity. Reductionism in the problem solving approaches more often than not falls short of addressing the requisite complexity for an adequate problem solution.

We are convinced that an integral governance can be achieved that overcomes many of the deficiencies of traditional steering paradigms. An architectural approach to the problem space and the leverage of modern information technology are critical to realizing our vision of integrating different perspectives and enabling choice of actors.

Challenges

To establish orientation and motivation as the basis for engagement at all levels the following challenges have to be addressed:

  • Understanding the power of context.
  • Direction setting that is based on a shared sense of reality and possibility and aims for excitement.
  • Coordination that uses effective interaction tools and aims for trust.
  • Personnel development that takes account of diversity and supports individual development paths.

Complications

The steering challenge gets complicated by

  • increasing diversity of contexts,
  • increasing interdependence of stakeholders,
  • increasing information loads,
  • increasing ambiguity.

Illusions

The common reaction is higher investments in standardization, financial compliance and performance control systems.  This leads to ever more complex, yet not more effective performance contracts.  Such steering is characterized by a backward orientation, „gaming“ and little accounting for contingencies. Organizations become internally focused, stressed, but not more effective.

4I-Framework

The following framework helps in exploring key factors of success for an integral governance.

Purpose of website


This website is a repository for documenting projects and explorations concerning complexity and tools to deal with the ensuing challenges undertaken by Johannes Meier. A focus is on tools that can help improve quality of direction and interaction and renewal in organizations and networks.  Tipping points and the phenomenon of resonance and what can be done about them are of central interest.

Projects


The key concepts have been applied in the following projects.

  • The Labour Market Monitor is a platform for learning and coordination across stakeholder boundaries of key actors in the German labour market.
  • The AMD-Netz is a platform for helping patients with Age-related  Macular Degeneration find orientation and support.
  • The resonance in funding ecology concepts and tools are provided open-source to foundation managers to improve their coordination across organizational boundaries.

Notes


In the notes section short papers or ideas summaries are being collected. It may grow into a blog over time.

Using big data tools to explicate coordination needs and learning opportunities in a funding ecology

Complex societal change calls for many stakeholders to come together, find common positions and align their strategies and activities. For foundations this means that most significant societal challenges cannot be addressed effectively with the resources of only a single foundation. An uncoordinated approach taken by different foundations to the same challenge is unlikely to create …

Johannes Meier


Johannes Meier is a private scholar, educator, systems architect and member of various supervisory and advisory boards.

From February 2011 until February 2017 he was the CEO of the European Climate Foundation which is focused on policies that mitigate climate change and drive the transition to a low-carbon economy.

Prior to joining the European Climate Foundation he was a partner at McKinsey & Co. (1990-1997), CEO of GE CompuNet Computer AG (1998-2003), and managing board member of the Bertelsmann Foundation (2003-2009).

In 2009 he founded a software start-up and developed a collaboration platform for the German Public Employment Agency, the Labour Market Monitor, which won the 2011 e-government award for most innovative e-government solution in Germany.

Johannes sits on the supervisory boards of Xing AG, Hamburg, Meridian Stiftung, Essen, CLIQZ GmbH, Munich, and Unicef, Germany. He has been lecturing regularly on leadership in the MBA program of HHL, Leipzig.

He holds a M.S. in Computer Science from RWTH, Aachen, and a Ph.D. in Communication and Information Sciences  from the University of Hawaii, Manoa.