Growth, Transformation & Progress

There are many good reasons to question what we are taught and (yet again) Giles Hutchins tells it how it is. Of course, if you read any of my past blogs, particularly dealing with Panarchy and the Panarchic Cycle, it wont come as a great surprise that we are ‘on the same page’.

I frequently ask myself and others, “how do you know what you know”? The reason is so that we question, not just the basis of our knowledge but that of those who would presume to ‘educate’. Given that we now understand so much more about the, miraculous, fractal nature of our own biology and the striking similarities in structure and cycles affecting other systems seen in Nature, it is surprising that we are still prone to work against Nature by attempting to apply our linear thinking in an effort to control or regulate.

It is, perhaps, no great surprise that the knowledge of subject matter experts can often be seen to be ‘lacking’ or based upon knowledge that has been superseded but that vital information has not reached them or has not penetrated the walls of conventional wisdom…or herd mentality, i.e. the belief system that is the basis of their status as experts. They continue to infect enquiring minds with tainted knowledge, rather than understanding: the blinded leading the blind.

Of course there are those who, knowingly and without conscience, indoctrinate others, in return for the promise of rewards in this life (or the next). These individuals will go to extreme lengths to satisfy their master(s) so the question is worth remembering the next time someone presumes to tell you ‘how it is’…because greed, fear and ego are powerful drivers and many have been ‘blinded’ in the pursuit of truth and understanding!

…in these transformational times, organisations and their leaders need to embrace transformational change: death/rebirth, breakdown/breakthrough. In the words of Dawn Vance, Global Head of Logistics for Nike:

‘Organisations have three options:

1) Hit the wall;

2) Optimise and delay hitting the wall;

3) Redesign for resilience.’

Many organisations today – for profit and non-profit – busy themselves with optimising the existing business model which is only delaying the inevitable car crash

via Growth, Transformation & Progress.

Entropy, Structure and Critical Complexity

If you want to accomplish more you must become more complex. This means two things: structure and entropy. Structure is what defines functionality, entropy is what allows a system to react in a creative and novel way to a changing and possibly harsh environment

Is Risk Management a Source of Risk

See on Scoop.itComplexity & Resilience

If you have risk function, however, that fully understands the business model, the deployment of its operational strategy, the sector the business operates in and the macro-economic and socio-political environment in which it operates, then they will be able to provide risk information that is relevant to the business, and can be understood by the business.

David G Wilson‘s insight:

‘Knowledge’ that fails to distinguish between practises that are based upon sound theory and those that rely upon flawed models and assumption-based modelling, do not lead to understanding but to feedback loops of unintended consequences…patterns and correlations of our own making!

Unidentified sources of risk and ill-informed (albeit well-intentioned) efforts to manage without UNDERSTANDING ‘causal relationships‘ has the opposite of the desired effect…

…unmanaged risk does not dissipate but is a source of systemic risk, mis-managed, it adds complexity is amplified through the business’ interdependencies and interactions, feeding-back as volatility and adding to uncertainty.

‘Conventional wisdom’ (or herd mentality) based upon assumptions of knowledge, can/does impair our ability to understand and address issues at source.

Before we had the tools to increase our knowledge we were ignorant but, to have the tools and not use them is dangerous and costly ineptitude!:

‘Corporate Latency’ is a significant source of, reducible, exposure in every domain and, unless it is better managed, we cannot build resilient systems or create ecosystems that can claim to be truly sustainable.

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The Dynamic Properties of Complexity and Business Resilience

Based on how close a system functions to its critical complexity one may infer its “state of health” or resilience. Resilience is of great importance since it reflects the system’s ability to maintain functionality in the presence of sudden and unexpected events (shocks). Our turbulent economy will be characterised by and increasing number of shocks of growing intensity. This is because it is highly interconnected and, at the same time, fragile.

via Ontonix S.r.l.: The Dynamic Properties of Complexity and Business Resilience.

Ontonix S.r.l.: Complexity Profiling and Causality

See on Scoop.itComplexity & Resilience

Complexity is a measure of how much information a system “contains” and how much this information is structured. One could simply sum up the Shannon entropies of each variable and conclude that this is the total amount of information in a system. However, because variables can be correlated, they give rise to structure. Structure means the system can “do more” and, potentially, perform new functions. Structure is present everywhere in Nature.

David G Wilson‘s insight:

The potential to track causality through identification of ‘Causal Relationships’ offers insight where an early warning can serve as a means to prevent a potentially major loss.

Invaluable insight for carriers of financial and insurance risks where the causal relationship between its own profitability and risk profile is apparent…so, WHY, if loss prevention is achievable, are those charged with the responsibility to underwrite such risks, ‘content’ with conventional wisdom and a limited ‘risk horizon’ when:


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