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Tony Quinlan  Thinking
Tony Quinlan
Nice article today on the WorldBank and its behavioural change aims – my favourite piece was this: Toilets, for example. Nowhere is open defecation more prominent than in India, where more than 600 million people have no access to a toilet. But even where proper sanitation has been installed, “people tend not to want to […]
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Tony Quinlan
There’s more to come on the results of the recent Fragments of Impact event in Istanbul – the current plan is to write the projects up properly as soon as we can a) find people who can write effectively on this topic or b) find the time ourselves to sit and write. (Volunteers welcome…) But. […]
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Michael Cheveldave
It’s reasonably well known that retaining more than 5 different things in your memory is difficult. This is known as Millar’s Law. We often explain this with some humour during training referring to why when given directions most people find it difficult to remember past 5 instructions.  The concept here is that the number of […]
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Tony Quinlan
Back in June 2015, we began the Fragments of Impact programme, partnering with UNDP, to explore how to use SenseMaker® in monitoring and evaluation. This week we’re back in Istanbul, with all the various participants to teach and explore the data and what to do next – in terms of interventions, in terms of monitoring […]
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Michael Cheveldave
One of the aspects of sense-making we emphasize in all our training programmes is the value of contrast. Since complex systems are inherently unordered, without any underlying repeating structure, their is no absolute baseline or reference. Hence contrasting from differences in the system (I.e. perspective, context, location, etc.) provides an effective means of making sense. […]
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Tony Quinlan
We’re running CrowdSensor right now in Singapore – Join in here.  We’re looking for everyone’s thoughts on what might happen next. There’s an interesting experiment on micro-scenarios taking place right now at the International Risk Assessment and Horizon Scanning Symposium in Singapore that’s looking for input. It’s gathering international reactions and opinions on what happens […]
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Tony Quinlan
The National Health Service in Northern Ireland are among the earliest users of SenseMaker®, working with network member Anne McMurray to explore multiple health-focussed issues.  Early examples included work around bereavement in families, allowing local teams to improve and adapt the support they provide – a report from that project is here. Most recently, the excellent 10,000 […]
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Dave Snowden
The essence of my post yesterday was to suggest that much of Nudge Theory involves a form of reverse linear thinking. In the UK at the moment consideration is being given to printing the price of a prescription on the packet which seems a rather perverse variation of Smoking Kills; I’m not totally sure what […]
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Dave Snowden
My first full day in New Zealand involved some interesting meetings and a presentation to the Hugo Group in the early evening. These small sessions with senior executives are always enjoyable as you get into strategic dialogue quickly and the need for explanation of context is less that with a broader audience. A few questions […]
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About the Cynefin Company

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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