"2) Do background research: The community member may start to ask neighbors and other community members what their experiences are with recycling.
Do they feel adequately supported by the frequency of recycling pick-ups?
An emergency medicine physician, Dhaliwal is one of the leaders in a field known as clinical reasoning, a type of applied problem solving.
In recent years, Dhaliwal has mapped out a better way to solve thorny issues, and he believes that his problem solving approach can be applied to just about any field from knitting to chemistry.
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"We all do problem solving all day long," Dhaliwal told me.
In contrast, practices that might seem a little odd—like talking to yourself—can be pretty effective.
I came across the new research on problem solving as part of my reporting on a book on the science of learning, and it was mathematician George Polya who first established the field, detailing a four-step approach to cracking enduring riddles.
Dhaliwal also makes a few early generalizations, and he thought that Andreas might have a lung infection or an autoimmune problem.
There wasn’t enough data to offer any sort of reliable conclusion, though, and really Dhaliwal was just gathering information.