Lab Introduces Strategic Diversity Assessment to the Foundry

The Lab continues to develop new tools and frameworks to promote agile strategy and open, loosely connected networks. This type of strategy process is different from traditional hierarchical organizations. Network strategy is based on teams.

To provide insight in how teams should be formed, the Lab has introduced a new tool to measure strategic diversity within a team.  Last year, we began partnering with a Europe-based organization called Human Insight Ltd. and learned about their remarkable research in the field of strategic diversity.

Based on the work of Dutch psychiatrist Peter Robertson and colleagues, they have developed the AEM-Cube, an assessment tool that provides insights into strategic diversity and how people can optimally contribute to it. We are now applying this approach in our work both on  and off campus.

The acronym “AEM” is a derived from the methodology’s three core dimensions – Attachment, Exploration, and Management of Complexity. The ‘Cube’ in the name refers to the fact that these dimensions can be portrayed in a three-dimensional space.

Individuals score differently along these three dimensions.  In simple terms, we look at the world differently, and we each have a different “comfort zone”.  We can plot our position in two dimensions along an S curve or in three dimensions within a cube.  Effective teams  are composed of individuals that together represent “strategic diversity”.  This insight closely tracks the work of Scott Page who emphasizes the importance of cognitive diversity in complex systems. (Learn more here.)

Recently, we introduced this team-based strategic diversity assessment to the Purdue Foundry. We’re in the process now of integrating this new tool into the Foundry’s toolsets.

To learn more about our work with strategic diversity, please e-mail Scott Hutcheson: