ICIS Forum

The ICIS Forum is a communications program serving innovative thinkers and practitioners from many disciplines from many fields and countries who address a wide variety of central issues and concerns in the fields of world affairs, the environment, education, religion, society, and the individual. The Forum offers an environment where innovative ideas can be shared with and worked on within a community of kindred spirits. It provides a unique platform for cross-disciplinary exchange of ideas and potential developments.

Mission

The ICIS Forum was established in 1968 as an ongoing exploratory dialogue among invited innovative thinkers and humanitarian leaders representing many fields who are deeply concerned with central issues in and across cultures, disciplines and societies. It has provided a means whereby the limitations of a one-time conference could be overcome by providing an open-ended "multilogue" that continues as long as it is beneficial to participants, allowing full development of viewpoints under discussion within the relatively informal process. Participants receive multiple feedback on ideas or viewpoints from others in various fields, disciplines and cultures beyond those of the particular contributor. This cross-disciplinary, cross-cultural, multi-field approach has been a unique benefit helping participants to test new ideas and concepts while still in an early stage of development.

History

The first issue of ICIS Forum was published in January, 1968, with contributions by Charlotte Buhler on "The Role of Psychotherapy in Our Time," by Abraham H. Maslow on "A Philosophy of Psychology," and by Walter A. Weisskopf on "Existential Balance and Evolution," among others. There were responses in following issues from other contributors with Thomas Merton commenting on Buhler and others along with new material by Ludwig von Bertalanffy on "General System Theory as an Integrating Factor in Contemporary Science and in Philosophy" and by Amiya Chakravarty on "A Message of Integrity: A Note on Poet Iqbal." Over the years, a great diversity of critical topics have been presented and explored among participants.

Forum editors occasionally ignited discussions by raising topical questions for discussion by all members. For example in the late 1980s participants were invited to respond to the question of what were the five most critical issues that would be facing the world between then and the turn of the century. A lively interactive dialogue continued on this theme well into the 1990s and resulted in a special two volume issue of the ICIS Forum. Results of this exchange were also summarized and distributed to policy makers and to agencies in the United Nations.

These are illustrative of the contributions and dialogue that continued in quarterly issues in print format until the last issue was published in Spring of 1994.

ICIS Forum is now being offered again to invited participant contributors — this time in a new format as the "ICIS Forum" online.