Wicked Problems are seen today as well as throughout history in a variety of ways that are not fully understood by society in entirety. Many wicked problems in fact, are not seen as “wicked” until the severity of them has reached a certain point. So what even is a wicked problem? The definition is characterized as a social or cultural problem that is difficult or even impossible to find a solution to. As of now, the perfect example of a wicked problem would be our global warming and climate change issue. The world’s rapid increase in temperature in places that have not experienced extreme heat before is highly concerning and only a fraction of the world’s population is aware of the problem’s severity.
I cannot bash the percentage of people who are oblivious to these problems that we are living through today because I too, was oblivious. I always knew about global warming and climate change, but I never knew that we were living in a state of emergency. Before attending this class, I believed that problems like this were inevitable and that it was just the way that the world works. After discovering that there are in fact solutions but that they are almost unachievable, I was in awh. The global warming crisis is inflicted by humans, and because it is caused by us, we too have the power to control it. Now what this entails is a series of cutting down gas emissions, production of goods, cutting down on fossil fuels, and discontinuing the deforestation of our trees. As you can see, the entirety of the world’s population will never stop doing these things because it is not an immediate threat. Yes, our temperatures are rising and dropping in places where it shouldn’t, but people do not care because it will be our childrens and our grandchildren’s lifetimes that experience the catastrophic consequences thus making it: a wicked problem.
Another characteristic of why wicked problems are wicked is due to the lack of educated people who would be willing to step in and help. I can speak up for this majority because I was one of the uneducated individuals who is now understanding and wanting to help. I believe that the lack of celebrity voices on wicked problems contributes to the problem. Without their influence on the population, most people will continue to live their everyday lives without learning about issues that remain in the darkness of society. However if they were to use their platform for bettering our ecosystem and society, we would be one step closer to coming together on a solution.
Wicked problems today are not going to go away immediately or anytime soon with the small advancements in recycling and only creating biodegradable items. However if we all collectively decide to reuse, reduce, and recycle, we can make a small, manageable difference in our communities. One thing this class has taught me is that anything is possible, it just will take so many different outcomes to do so. But who’s to say that taking a shot at even the small things can make a bigger impact than it seems?