Alexander Schieffer

Alexander Schieffer

Aspiring to live an integral life in the service of the integral development of humanity, I see myself simultaneously as a transformative educator, engaged activist, passionate community builder, integral philosopher, and spiritual poet.

Born in Germany, I studied economics, business and social sciences at the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland. My doctoral thesis, also at St. Gallen, addressed new styles of individual and organizational leadership (“Führungspersönlichkeit”), with a particular focus on personality development.

In my young adulthood, I began exploring the world, extensively – initially, during my university years, with internships in Mexico-City, Buenos Aires, Singapore, Paris and New York. It is during those years that my understanding of the rich cultural diversity of our planet began to strike me as an incredible treasure and a key to the healthy development of humankind. I began work life in International Investment Banking in Frankfurt, and then in Media & Communication with the media giant Bertelsmann in London. From there I moved to Singapore where I co-founded and built up First Asia Publishing into a leading special-interest publisher. In 2002, my co-founder and I decided to sell the company to a Chinese media conglomerate, as I increasingly felt a need to participate in addressing the transformative challenges of our time.

From this point onwards, I pursued my passion of bringing about transformation in the economic, social, cultural and spiritual sphere. Together with Ronnie, we established the Trans4m Center for Integral Development in 2006. Core to my motivation to co-found Trans4m, is my belief that an integral perspective to life holds a key to the survival of humanity and planet. Applying such a perspective, in locally relevant and resonant ways, can bring solutions to humanity’s most burning issues, and provide a viable platform for the imminent and necessary evolutionary leap of our species.

In addition to co-creating a new integral knowledge and practice foundation, another particular interest of mine is to bring out and work with the uniqueness of each person, each context, and each culture. Driven by a the guiding image of “unity in diversity,” I continuously seek for the most transformative educational space to nurture the full potential of participants, their communities and organisations. Education, to me, is hence not a means in itself. Rather, education needs to be related to the potentials and challenges that we encounter, locally and globally. Its role is to stimulate continuous personal and collective transformation in service of sustainable livelihood, as well as sustainable organisational, community and societal development.

In that spirit, I developed and teach integral curricula in international development, organisational and societal transformation, and culturally and spiritually conscious leadership. I lead courses at universities around the world, including St. Gallen University (Switzerland), University of Johannesburg (South Africa), Hope University (UK), Heliopolis University for Sustainable Development (Egypt), and Meridian University (USA). I hold visiting professorships at the University of Staffordshire in the UK and with Da Vinci Institute in South Africa, in addition to an honorary professorship with Liverpool’s Hope University in the UK. A published poet, I am deeply immersed in developmental psychology as well as in many of the world’s wisdom traditions. I am married to – and frequently work together with – peace-builder and poet-performer Dr. Rama Mani. We live in the French countryside, near Geneva, where we are building up the “Home for Humanity”, serving also as the main global seat for Trans4m. We are proud parents of our son Arjuna, who studies liberal arts and philosophy at the Erasmus University College in Rotterdam, Netherlands.

Imago Integralis: The Aesthetics of Integral Life

Article

I. Longing for the Integral Life This article introduces a new integral perspective on life and provides clues of what […]