Generative Communication

What generative communication is?

Generative communication is a paradigm (at the base of a peculiar operative methodology) opposed to the mechanistic-transmissive one that is dominant today.

If the latter aims to inhibit existing resources, to penalize creativity and corporate culture (individual and collective) and to strengthen current power relations, generative communication identifies and helps to exploit the immense resources currently available, but often not recognized, through new synergies that lead to the development of innovation and community.

The knowledge society, in fact, does not need a communication that preaches it, but that the practice it, which seeks to implement it by experiencing communications / communities. It also needs to make mistakes, according to a method that interprets the error not as a fault, but as an essential contribution on the road towards the construction of a future world that sanctions the exit of man from prehistory and starts the writing of a story quite different from what we have been able to imagine until now.

For this reason generative communication is also a sustainable communication, as it does not provide for the management and reproduction of the existing one, but legitimizes the ability to build a new relationship between the project and its realization, in which knowledge is the main resource . That same knowledge that has an extremely interesting feature: the more you use it, the more it generates new ones.

From our origins to current times

As an idea and research project, Generative Communication was born in the first half of the ’70s, within the philological sciences, on the initiative of Luca Toschi, a young researcher between Italy and the United States (UCLA, Harvard University, UConn). The purpose of that research was to try to understand how the new and increasingly “personal” new computer technologies could be able to penetrate the creative process of great writers like Petrarca, Machiavelli, Tasso, Goldoni, Manzoni, Verga, Pirandello in a strongly interdisciplinary perspective. And, therefore, in understanding how those works of theirs had been composed, and then read and rewritten, “re-mediated” by other languages ​​(from illustrated books to cinema, opera, comics, objects, from photography to theater, from television to advertising and fashion).

Attention to Human Touch: a story that comes from far away

It those years, in order to work with computers you needed to physically “enter”, inside rooms frequented by men in white coats.

Today, computers are entering in our everyday life, inside the bodies of men. But despite these advances, the relationship between investment in new technologies and return is still rarely convenient. More and more difficult, mechanized working conditions have been created and continue to be created: on the physical and symbolic level, material and mental, psychological; transformations are started, even deep ones, on the socio-economic level, which promise great improvements. 

But these transformations, in reality, seem to move ever further forward the moment when they can verify whether they have actually favored real progress.

Still today, it continues to dominate the idea that the insertion and use of new technologies is innovation in itself. It is no wonder, therefore, that this providential vision of these powerful tools, and of the organization connected to them, often ends up slowing down cultural, social, economic and political progress, rather than promoting it. This situation is degenerating the very idea of ​​”resources”, considered increasingly mechanical and therefore financial, monetary, and ever less human.

The history of Homo Sapiens is marked by powerful forces of change that have ended up modifying the world in a way that the protagonists of those transformations had failed to foresee, to imagine; or even that they didn’t want. 

For this reason, today, having us tools of transformation of reality that are so powerful and invasive, we need, as never before in our history, a right balance between experimentation and design, between the production of knowledge (scientia) and its application (usus). It is therefore necessary to start training in a culture of innovation in step with the times, because innovation today is first of all a culture of processes and generative systems.

An unprecedented relationship between experimentation and design

The reality we practice, our most everyday actions are only apparently insignificant. Since they are organized and managed by very powerful and invisible automation systems to all of us, taken individually they seem to have very limited consequences but at system level they have cumulative effects, cascading, positive or negative, in the short, very short or very long term.

Man has never had so much unconscious strength and the risk of loss of control, or at best controlled by narrow and not very visible power groups, however not democratically legitimized. History is full of miscalculations, but today, in the context of the planetary society and in the era they call Anthropocene, a wrong calculation can have irreversible, non-modifiable effects: complexity theory has explained it very well. And this applies to society as a whole as a company (today more than ever to analyze and interpret like a living being), for every type of organization. Even more so for the cultural dimension of our life.

However, the complexity that governs our lives must not be a limit, a brake on action and innovation. On the contrary, it is necessary to understand it in order to identify in it and in the plot of relationships in which all the elements of the system are inserted an immense patrimony of resources still to be discovered first and to be exploited then. This is why the fulcrum of all projects conducted on the basis of generative communication is a Matrix Communication Object, a modest object in the economy of the entire system but bearer of innovative grammars capable of activating innovation processes on the entire system.