Too much of our understanding of complexity is intellectual. There is very little that embodies what complexity philosopher Edgar Morin would term “lived complexity”.
Decision-makers commonly mistake complex systems for simply complicated ones and look for solutions without realizing that ‘learning to dance’ with a complex system is definitely different from ‘solving’ the problems arising from it. – Roberto Poli Many people believe that complexity is just higher order complicatedness i.e. that there is a continuum and that the difference … Continue reading 7 Differences between complex and complicated
I had the privilege this week to co-facilitate an Adaptive Space workshop with Prof Mary Uhl-Bien at a local business school. I’ve long been intrigued by her work, so it was really good to see it applied practically. As always, I’m left with a need to make sense of where it fits into other complexity … Continue reading Enabling adaptive space
My last post was about Paul Cilliers’s 7 characteristics of complex systems. In this post I want to explore 7 of the implications of complexity that he thought was important for those working in and on organisations (his original text is in italics). 1.Since the nature of a complex organization is determined by the interaction … Continue reading Seven implications of complexity for organisations
I have been re-reading the work of Prof Paul Cilliers, who truly was a pioneer in complexity thinking. I came across this summary of the general characteristics of complex systems in a piece he wrote in 2000. It is a concise and accessible qualitative description of complexity and I thought it would be useful to … Continue reading 7 Characteristics of complex systems