The Naskapi Indians used to determine where to hunt game by placing the shoulder bone of a caribou over a fire until it cracks - then read the cracks as a map. This strategy works because it ensures that the plans for future hunts are not shaped by the results of past hunts. It kept the Naskapis from mindlessly returning to - and depleting - territory they had covered before.
Courtesy of Karl Weick http://www.wired.com/wired/archive/4.04/weick_pr.html
Here is another story which I came across in the wake of the terrible events of Sept 11th
American grandfather was talking to his grandson about how
Also I came
across this website via Dave Gurteen's newsletter,
I have just finished a new article for the Lloyds TSB newsletter for small businesses. The article attempts to explain the benefits of complexity theory to businesses without mentioning complexity or theory. I will be posting it on my web site shortly so why not have a look and let me know what you think.
I am developing
with Amanda Dale - email@example.com - a programme based on complexity
aimed at medium to large organisations called the Thriving Organisation.
This presents the concept in a way that hopefully will not frighten off
those who are new to the subject. I will include you on our mailing list
when we are ready to launch it early next year.
The content of the second slide I acquired from David Kernick - firstname.lastname@example.org . David is a doctor in Exeter and he has been asked to contribute a chapter to a book about complexity in the Health Service. My specialisms are business and education so it was a fascinating experience reading about complexity in the health sector and I picked up a number of new perspectives. How about this for a set of simple rules for the health service
that death, sickness and pain are part of life
Communities of Practice
At a recent
event I was facilitating I was asked to find some resources on Communities
of Practice. These are where people with the same role or function in
an organisation, industry or sector come together to share.
Inter~logics have announced details of next years conference "It's a Relational World" for 13th - 15th March 2002 at Ardencote Manor, Warwickshire. Further details at email@example.com
I met up last month with Marilyn and Henry Herasymowych from the MHA Institute who were over from Canada. We had a most stimulating conversation that included the thought "why do we educate young people in the known and not teach them to explore the unknown". They introduced me to their name signing exercise which is on their website so why not give it a go http://www.mhainstitute.ca/Htm/Try/Htm/Default.htm
I went to the exhibition at the CIPD Conference in Harrogate and spent some time at a stand organised by four small consultancies operating with complexity who call themselves Coevolve. firstname.lastname@example.org
Society of Arts have scheduled a lecture to be given by Prof. Ralph
past decade, practicing managers and organisational theorists have
Getting the Message Across
I was chatting to David Norman email@example.com about the difficulties of introducing the concepts of complexity to businesses and he sent me this contribution.
Orthodoxy . . . the emerging paradigm paradox:
I am mindful that the approaches of accelerated human change technologies, and other closely associated methods, for a wide variety of reasons, may be unwelcome, even threatening, to many mainstream researchers and practitioners. There are a number of contemporary commentaries on these behaviour patterns, and importantly guidelines, models and suggestions of what to do about it to accelerate acceptance. I am reminded in this context of the following authors:
The Kon Tiki paradox - Consider the achievements of Thor Heyerdahl of Kon Tiki expedition fame. Who crossed the Pacific Ocean in a papyrus raft he built, to prove that migration was possible in ancient times. When interviewed recently in the Weekend FT (30/1 Dec 2000) and describing his experiences, said, " . . . the expeditions success generated real academic hostility. Accepted theories and established reputations had to be defended".
The diffusion paradigm - As the highly acclaimed sociologist and Stanford Professor, Everett Rogers (The diffusion of innovations. Free Press. 1983, and later) points out; "Most innovations, in fact, diffuse at a surprisingly slow rate". As he said on " . . . the widespread adoption of educational ideas: "the average American school lags 25 years behind best practice. Examples of this pattern (adopter-diffusion) are well documented and researched (1000 + cases). The studies address the characteristics, communication patterns and social systems involved. Ranging from the more than 250!!! years (1601 to 1865) that it took the Royal Navy to adopt (from 'proof' to 'policy') vitamin C, to eradicate scurvy (by far the biggest killer at sea), to studies of the failure of the vastly superior Dvorak keyboard, clean Peruvian drinking water, snowmobiles in Lapland, solar heating in California, Java software, and many more.
contributions can be found in:
In the earlier note on storytelling I referred to Stephanie Burns. She has a range of articles and other resources on learning to learn and goal setting. http://www.stephanieburns.com/
newsletters I have referred to the Hubble site http://oposite.stsci.edu/pubinfo/pictures.html
and a fractal web site http://members.home.net/mbfractals/
. On returning to the Hubble site I realised just how fractal in nature
the Universe is. This is illustrated really well with the pictures of
the star nurseries.