Too often, we’ll look at a problem and look for superficial solutions instead of treating the root cause of the disease. This is an issue that permeates many industries, not just the medical one. Short-term results are sought in business for profits, politics for votes, standardized tests for bonuses, and more.
Our communities and leaders have opted for short-term results at the expense of the long-term benefits of holistic problem-solving. The majority of us who live and interact with our communities understand that it’s those very same communities that will enrich future generations. How does that translate at the decision-making level? My guess is that it doesn’t, at least not very well.
While building up communities makes sense in theory, what do the economics say? Well, take a look at how we incentivize our leaders, and it becomes easy to see why our system struggles to effect change. We are acting only by considering ourselves and our present situation, while long- term plan and project solution proposals can affect future generations. Wall Street incentivizes quarterly gains instead of sustainable growth; votes are rewarded for impulse decisions instead of the long-term benefit to citizens; Big Pharma regularly crosses ethical lines with doctors—which then affects our care.
Until we take a hard look at how we encourage and compensate decision making, how much can we really expect decisions to change?
Drafted by Julian Legrand