TedxLeiden 2013 - Circles of Life

In our lives we continously need to adapt to the changing context we live in. This is true on a personal level, but also applies to the organisations or instutions that we lead or where we  participate in. Globalisation and the digital revolution seems to have made life more unpredictable or chaotic and require us to be increasingly adaptive, able and daring to see and explore emerging opportunities. Tom Cummings introduces four basic steps to help us do this: pause, connect, reflect and reframe.Tom Cummings has held senior executive roles in Shell International, ABN AMRO Bank and Unilever. He is also a creative partner, designer and process facilitator for strategic visioning, business performance and leadership development programs. He is the co-author of the book "leadership landscapes".Tom is known for his ability to bring new insights, sharp contrasts and fresh perspectives.

Marianne was educated as a philosopher. Since trying a primal diet, which benefitted her health greatly, Marianne decided she wanted to find out about any other possible benefits to the way our early ancestors lived. Her idea is radical: to live like a cavewoman, not for a week, but for a whole year. Not in some forest, but in the middle of Amsterdam.

Attorney Roger H.J. Cox touches our heart, soul and mind using an ancient and thought-provoking Inuit story of caribous, wolves and men to explain how the law and human rights can save the planet and humanity from dangerous climate change.

What happens when a society goes through a phase of creative destruction. This is what we can now learn from Greece. To learn what it means to live in a paradox where institutions no longer deliver and citizens need to find new creative ways to organize their life. This is the space where democracy can be re-invented through participation.Maria Scordialos leads groups of people to design, co-create and host engagements for systemic change. Living in Greece, Maria has first hand experience of the disintegrating current systems and the social innovation that is being birthed through this.

Our genes are still programme us to survive by conserving energy and eating when we can. However our living conditions have evolved way beyond survival. As a consequence we have adopted unhealthy living practices. Fighting our genes is difficult, so why not be more practical and adapt our living conditions. David van Bodegom presents his research and inspiration from Ghana.Ageing expert David van Bodegom radically changed his career as a medical doctor when he realized he did not want to cure people anymore; he wanted to keep them healthy. He was inspired by a 93 year old man in Ghana, who showed him how the living environment is the key to healthy ageing.  Now he shares the recipe for a healthy long life with us

How can we solve the fundamental issues in society through our economy? There is a growing number of initiatives that introduce principles and badges for sustainable business practices. However, the adoption is slow and often the outcome is unclear. What if we would include the cost of these inferior business practices into the price of our products?Michel Scholte is co-founder of True Price, a social enterprise that calculates and improves the true price of products. The True Price of a product includes the net social and environmental costs incurred in production, distribution, selling and consumption.In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

Elke Miedema is an ambitious architect. She is part of Except, a multi disciplinary co-operation of sustainability professionals. She explains Urban Renaissance: a new way to re-develop our living environment, using the existing strengths to enable transformation, leaving room for innovation and stakeholder responsibility.

Ronald Meester argues that we should be very careful when we use mathematical models. The numbers and figures that come out of these models can only be meaningful if they are realistic enough. Often we need wisdom rather than mathematics.Ronald Meester is a professor in mathematics at VU University in Amsterdam and publishes about the position of science in society.

We are increasingly confronted with the consequences of global warming and the loss of bio-diversity. The more we understand and appreciate the wonder of nature, the better we are able to sustain our life on this planet. This is where the T-Rex comes in. Can you imagine another creature that has been able to better capture the imagination of kids? This is why we decided to go on an epic journey to find a real T-Rex and bring it to Europe. We believe that through telling the story of this T-Rex and its excavation we can get more kids to experience the wonder of life on this planet.Paleontologist Anne Schulp is a researcher at Naturalis Biodiversity Center in Leiden. The natural history collection of Naturalis is extensive, but one kind of dinosaur was conspicuously absent: a large carnivore. This changed recently, when Anne helped excavating a Tyrannosaurus fossil in Montana, USA.

MasterPeace is an innovative, bottom-up global peace movement, as a result of East-West cooperation, supported by NGOs, companies, cities, artists, media and social entrepreneurs from all over the world. We are an open and inviting movement in which everyone is encouraged to use his or her talents and energy for peace building, either by starting your own initiative, supporting other`s initiatives or taking part in one or more of MasterPeace initiatives.Yolanda Eijgenstein is a natural-born entrepreneur who sold her first company and now runs two businesses and is involved in a variety of projects, boards and challenges. One of them is Masterpeace, a global grassroots peace initiative.

Dick de Groot has trained school leaders in Rwanda after the genocide, in South Africa after 'apartheid' and in Palestine under circumstances of occupation. Inspired by the Ubuntu philosophy "I am because we are", he promotes Ubuntu Circles in schools because they do not only emphasize the teaching of children, but the learning of all.

A digitally connected world introduces new challenges for both organisations and people. Social media enables people take any event and start a dialogue or campaign on a global scale with both a creative and destructive effect. Introducing a level of chaos that we have never experienced before.Joe Zammit Lucia is a compulsive contrarian and takes seriously Lyotard's idea of resisting the complacent certainties of the expert. The question he explores is what will it take to be successful in our unpredictable, chaotic and rapidly changing societies?

Organisations know what to do when they have success. This is the moment you recognize the prople that contributed and organize a party. But what happens when organisations fail to achieve their goals and people had to leave the company? In most cases this is dismissed as a topic and leaders shift the focus to the new opportunities. Does this make sense? What does this mean for the people who stay or leave? In our personal lives we learn that it is important to deal with your loss. What would happen if organisatons integrate mourning into their culture? Will this create stronger organisations?Jakob van Wielink is fascinated by major changes in life and helps organisations and individuals in dealing with fundamental issues of finality. Using the 'Circle of Transition' as a metaphor, he shows that our difficulties in dealing with loss and mourning lay deeply rooted at the heart of conflicts.