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A day in Dallas

April 17, 2015

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The event was an interesting one as the focus was on Cynefin in the context of Emergency Management with a heath focus.  The exhibition had some scary equipment for managing Ebola outbreaks and the audience had a lot of ex military and other people with a service background.    I enjoyed the format which was two one hour sessions with lunch in-between along with track sessions.   That meant I was able to spend an hour on Cynefin alone, then after people had time to absorb and talk about the implications, move onto Cognitive and Narrative aspects.   The slides are loaded here.  

Now this was a very different group from that in New York the day before and it required a different style.  But I always like this sort of audience.   Nurses, policemen, marines, doctors all know about complexity in their day to day lives.  That means in effect you are giving them a theoretical understanding of something they are already aware of.  With consultancy audiences you are dealing with a different starting point.   Either way it went well and I’m going to back in Dallas for other sessions as a result.   

I took the opportunity between sessions to walk down to the memorial to Kennedy at the location where he was shot.   People told me it would be moving and it was.  The day of his assassination is one I remember even through I was very young at the time.   It came shortly after another day (the Cuban Missile Crisis) where my mother gathered us home as she was afraid the nuclear holocaust was coming.  People forget just how dangerous the sixties was, not to mention the cilvil rights movements in both the US and to a lesser extent Ireland.  It was a time of both fear and hope but much that was achieved back then has been lost since.  

Tomorrow, to Bogota and hopefully a project in the spirt of hope from those times

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The Cynefin Company (formerly known as Cognitive Edge) was founded in 2005 by Dave Snowden. We believe in praxis and focus on building methods, tools and capability that apply the wisdom from Complex Adaptive Systems theory and other scientific disciplines in social systems. We are the world leader in developing management approaches (in society, government and industry) that empower organisations to absorb uncertainty, detect weak signals to enable sense-making in complex systems, act on the rich data, create resilience and, ultimately, thrive in a complex world.
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