Successful Public Lecture on ‘The Challenge of Wicked Problems'
On Monday May 11, Professor John Alford held a very interesting lecture with the theme ‘The Challenge of Wicked Problems: Towards a Typology’.
Professor and the platform’s Academic Co-director Carsten Greve opened the lecture by welcoming John Alford. In his talk, Professor Alford addressed the issue of “wicked problems” that are confronting public managers and politicians in Denmark and around the world. The word ‘wicked’ seems to have changed meaning over time, and especially among young people who use the word to describe something as ‘cool’. But in this relation, ‘wicked’ problems should be understood as problems that are incredibly difficult to solve. Alford used two examples of complex problems throughout his lecture to exemplify what a wicked problem might be. The first complex problem was drug abuse and the second was the moon landing.
John Alford is known for his work on co-production, public value creation and management, and rethinking public service delivery systems. This research approach clearly became visible during the lecture, where he also critically questioned the typical responses to wicked problems.
The lecture gathered a great number of participants and there was a good spread in attendance from both the public and the private sector. Among the participants there were especially public managers and Master of Public Governance (MPG) students. Professor Alford included the audience in discussions on different issues when trying to solve ’wicked’ problems. The lecture ended with a Q&A session which was opened up by cluster member and associate professor Anne Reff Pedersen, and lots of questions were then asked by active and interested practitioners.
If you missed the lecture with John Alford and want to know more about Wicked Problems then contact the Public-Private Platform and we can forward Alford’s presentation.
Sign up for a reseach seminar with John Alford and Paul du Gay on June 1, 2015
On June 1 the Public-Private Platform hosts a seminar with Professor John Alford and Professor and Academic Co-director at the PP Platform Paul du Gay. The Seminar will be on ‘Public Value Management and How to Manage External Providers in Public Service Delivery’. Read more about the seminar and register at our website.