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If You Build It, They Will Cross: Building a Bridge to the “Promised Land”

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By Adam Burgoon

This paper outlines a novel theoretical framework intended to act as a bridge to the “promised land.” Originally a religious reference, the promised landis now generalized to mean “something and especially a place or condition believed to promise final satisfaction or realization of hopes” (Merriam-Webster, 2018). Positive psychology and positive organizational scholarship have accomplished much, including the memorialization of aspects of such a promised land, but they have not yet effectively engineered a bridge that enables people, and society as a whole, to confidently and consistently cross into the promised land. In this paper, Adam describes five design challenges for building such a bridge and addresses each of them with a design principle capable of overcoming the design challenge in question. Together, these five design principles compose a theoretical framework—the engineering blueprint for a bridge to the promised land. The fifth and final design principle is a specific bridging formula that paves the way for mass exodus to the promised land. Lastly, Adam describes an example of the bridging formula that is currently underway and proposes ways to accelerate such examples so that the novel theoretical framework contained herein, unlike much of academic theory, need not remain theoretical.

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