Two Forms of AI: Artificial Intelligence and Appreciative Inquiry.

May 20, 2024

Two Forms of AI: Artificial Intelligence and Appreciative Inquiry.

May 29, 2023

“Computers are useless. They only give you answers,” so exclaimed Pablo Picasso. True. Artificial Intelligence might seem far superior to Mrs. Johnson, my high school librarian. But, Mrs. Johnson offered me something that a computer has yet to perfect: she asked me clarifying questions that helped her to better answer my questions. And, on occasion, she asked an Appreciative Inquiry that opened up possibilities I hadn’t even considered like, “If you’re fascinated with geography, have you thought of studying a foreign language?”

Artificial Intelligence is a smart computer giving you answers. Appreciative Inquiry is a wise human offering your questions. Two forms of AI, both valuable, but offering very different perspectives. David Cooperrider, who co-founded the Appreciative Inquiry method, suggests, “Human systems move in the direction of the questions we ask…We live in worlds our questions create. A question, thoughtfully-conceived, can illuminate a room, a company, a life.

I’ve been lucky enough to spend some time with Oprah’s favorite living poet, Mark Nepo. Mark’s not a “know-it-all,” he’s a “poet-all” as he uses poetic thinking to ask beautiful questions. Whenever I sit down with this man, I come away feeling like his inquiries were more like a lantern than a flashlight. They helped me to see the bigger picture.

There’s nothing artificial about Mark as evidenced by this lovely video of him. Mark teaches twice a year at MEA and his next workshop is “The Power of Friendship” September 16-21 in Santa Fe. 

-Chip

Go deeper with a workshop, in person or online.

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