The Athens of South America

July 29, 2012

Having never been to Colombia I am now here for the third time in under a year and I must admit I am beginning to fall in love with the place.  It was helped yesterday by the contrast between Maryland, suffering oppressive heat even at 0600 in the morning and the fresh air on landing.  For those who don't know it Bogota sits within a bowl of hills over 9,000 feet above sea level.  Average temperature around 57ºF which it is now and I long ago worked out that is my ideal temperature!  

I spent most of yesterday and today getting the email backlog down from over 500 to under 100 and writing yesterday's key post on Cynefin.  By lunch time it was time to meet with our client and friend Marisol (pictured and in command, the other dude is Tony Quinlin).  She took us out to Chìa for lunch at the place pictured which is wonderfully eclectic and rambling restaurant that feels like a mixture of flea market and antique shop.  A jazz band dressed as cowboys were putting on an impromptu play in the centre, the steak was simply wonderful and the variety of fruit juice a delight.

What I always like about Latin America is the people you get to work with and teach.  Both here, and a few years ago in Caracas and then in São Paulo, I found audiences that were happy to take on board new concepts, could cope with theory as well as practice and are more than prepared to ask questions.  Its a nice contrast with a lot of the anti-intellectualism you often (but not always) find in the Anglo-Saxon equivalent.  Wikipedia calls Bogota The Athens of South America and from the people, the street graffiti, the Gold Museum, the Universities and the scenery it is that and more.  It's also safe, and people need to realise that and start visiting it again.

The only downside is the internet speed in our hotel.  I have no idea when this post will finally go up ….

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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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