December 14, 2021
The Andrew W. Marshall Foundation
On Tuesday, December 14, 2021, the Andrew W. Marshall Foundation (AWMF) and advisors met to reflect on 2021 activities and offer thoughts on experimentation, intellectual courage, and mentorship.
Jaymie Durnan, Co-Founder and Chairman of AWMF, welcomed the audience and gave opening remarks. Mr. Durnan discussed how AWMF is fulfilling its mission through the experiments it has launched in 2021and noted that, “we really are keeping our promise to Andy by focusing on people and ideas, and how people are applying these ideas to the future of the United States.”
Jesse Ausubel, director of the Program for the Human Environment at the Rockefeller University, spoke about experimentation and its merits. He stated that, “change is the only truly predictable attribute of most systems” and spoke to the importance of play as a form of experimentation and invention. “The youthful Marshall Foundation understands the need to play, to experiment, and then to grow while retaining that spirit of play. The good news about 2021 is that the Foundation did numerous things for the first time.”
Dr. Melissa Flagg of Flagg Consulting LLC spoke about how we can encourage people to think boldly and imagine possible futures. She described Andrew Marshall as “not in a hurry” and said that she believed “he felt a deep urgency, but it was an urgency to understand – not simply to act.” Dr. Flagg advised that “we have a responsibility to inspire and support those who want to think beyond simply what they have learned.”
Dr. Dan Patt discussed mentorship and what AWMF can do to foster new voices. Mentorship “has nothing to do with having the answers and everything to do with asking the questions,” he stated. He went on to remark, “in the way that Andy lived his life and conducted his career and mentored a good many souls, we can find inspiration and we can find some answers, but probably the greatest lesson for us was in how Andy approached questions, how he approached being a mentor.”
The event concluded with a question-and-answer session with the audience, focusing on identifying good research questions, group creativity, and considerations one should make when looking at future possibilities.Back to Library