Individually smart, collectively dumb!
I did not know that I would be referring to my new year blog so early in this year. Newspapers of 3-Feb-2012 made me do so. The news was about the 2G scam which had been under scrutiny for a long time now. In my opinion the verdict clearly stated that power corrupts and it gives you confidence that you can get away with murders too (many such cases pending in India)!
I thought hard – really very hard – to find a solution. I think I will go back to TRIZ (theory of Inventive Problem Solving) to decide conflicts and resolving them. Until I find a one size fit all ‘man made’ solution, I could think of only one possibility. This solution is self restraint, and owning responsibility to make sure we are morally correct.
This word ‘Moral’ reminds me of my economics and business ethics class of MBA where we discussed moral hazards with Prof Mankad and Prof Arun Ramanathan. I was reading this article on Moral hazards at Wharton. The article talks about authorities and new stringent rules. This regulatory authority will tomorrow need another (other set of rules) and so on and so forth. How long will we create such authorities? Moral hazards would end very easily when each one takes responsibility and become accountable for his/her action. This accountability has to come on each level and for all the actions. The problem lies with a reality that – ‘We are individually very smart but collectively dumb’. This ‘being individually smart’ begets moral hazard. The solution for this problem is one’s own self. Take responsibility own it and be accountable. Perhaps initially we (as individual) will fail but collectively we will start succeeding.
I am hopeful that once we start from ourselves (individually), each one of us would be able to avoid situations where we would talk about Newspapers of 3-Feb-12 (2G Scam), other scams and the bad shape of world economy. Hoping that we would save our energy to concentrate on something constructive.