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It’s The Journey, Not the Destination

It’s The Journey, Not the Destination For more than five years now, I have been opening my classes, workshops, and presentations with “The Two Q’s.”  I ask folks “What are the two questions that every human being is trying to answer – consciously or otherwise – every moment we are alive?”  As I tell my audiences, their answers may not be the same as mine, and there is no right or wrong answer. In 1998, on a family [...]

Business and Organization Guidelines for Addressing the Cornoavirus

Business & Organization Guidelines for Addressing the Coronavirus How to Take Action Now The role of business and organizational leaders is to provide critical guidance and policies that balance the needs of employees, customers and the greater communities they work and live in. This is a guide for implementing immediate actions to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19. Taking appropriate action begins with understanding and supporting the scientific and best practice protocols for practicing healthy safety throughout an organization. [...]

2020-03-15T13:41:17-04:00Complexity Matters Posts|

Cities Can Weather Hotter Futures Through Adaptation and Resilience

Hotter Futures for Cities Escalates Plexus Institute's archives of Complexity Matters Posts offer valuable insights into the most pressing issues confronting our world and society. We will continue to link current knowledge, work and thinking in new posts, conversations, projects  emerging throughout the Network. During the first half of  2011,  Tornados devastated Joplin, Missouri, and Tuscaloosa Alabama. Deadly storms have smashed through Arkansas, Oklahoma and Kansas, severe droughts have parched the Southwest, record wildfires burned in Texas, [...]

Nature’s Most Extreme Deadly Events Happening More Often

Die-offs Endanger Food Webs and Human Health Scientists examining the catastrophe unfolding in the path of Australia’s deadly bushfires may discover mass mortality events, terrifying phenomena in which vast numbers of a species die inexplicably in a very short period of time. A VOX story by Segal Samuel reports that Chris Dickman, a biodiversity expert at the University of Sydney, estimates more than one billion mammals, birds, reptiles, bats, frogs, and invertebrates have perished so far from flames [...]

Dangerous New Weather Systems

Clouds of Fire Generate Dangerous New Weather Systems The intense and boundless fires that have already devoured nearly 18 millions of acres of Australia are generating their own distinctive weather systems that spin off dangerous new storms and spread the inferno. Gigantic blazes are sending columns of smoke as high as 30 miles above the earth, according to the Australian government Bureau of Meteorology, triggering electrical storms, as well as dry lightening and high winds that spread burning embers [...]

Agile in Action

The Agile Fluency Project People who were doing Agile (often Extreme Programming, but also other methods & frameworks) were excited about it. They shared what they learned with others. Those others applied what they learned. Then they got excited too. They didn’t worry too much about “doing” Agile vs. “being” Agile. They just got on with the work of pleasing customers and bringing value to their business. I loved the days I got to work with those teams. [...]

Big Data on the Menu

Understanding the Complexity of Your Diet When I was a diabetes nurse, the first question I would invariably get from a new client was, “What can I eat and what can’t I eat”. It was also the question I most hated because it was so complicated. We are both blessed and cursed that supermarkets have forty to fifty thousand different things we might eat and none of it will either guarantee health or kill us immediately. What we [...]

When Avoiding Complexity is no Longer an Option!

 “Fostering the health of individuals, communities, organizations and our natural environment by helping people recognize, understand and use concepts emerging from the science of complexity.” The carefully crafted mission of Plexus Institute, a not-for-profit organization that was officially formed in 2001, still guides the primary work in the network, sharing knowledge and offering expertise through the continuing exploration of complexity in all our human systems, large and small. Our definition of “health” is broad, holistic, relative and [...]

2019-12-29T13:37:55-05:00Complexity Matters Posts|

Plexus Fractals

What is a Plexus Fractal? Plexus Fractals are self-organizing groups of people who want to get together face-to-face periodically to learn about complexity and its applications, share experience and problems, and network with others with similar interests. On a regular basis someone in the Plexus Network will ask, "Why don't we reboot local Fractals?" In the past, Plexus Fractals were hosted in cities across the US and Canada and were a popular way for members of the Plexus community [...]

Stories in Action: Sharing Complexity Conversations

A hallmark of Plexus Institute for nearly 20 years has been the sharing of conversations focused on applied principles of complexity across the professional, scientific and academic fields. Through hundreds of PlexusCalls, anyone could listen to, learn from, and ask questions of leading thinkers, researchers, and practitioners working to influence and lead change in the most complex and challenging situations. Today, this Plexus tradition continues with ComPlexus Podcasts.  We are in the process of recording the first series [...]

2019-10-20T18:30:24-04:00Complexity Matters Posts|

The Engineer and The Gardener: Management Science Versus Complexity Science

Let's Begin with Management Science The concept of management as a science has its origins in the aftermath of World War II. During that conflict the use of analytical disciplines drawn from operations research proved enormous useful in decision-making. After the war the hope was that the business use of operations research would form the basis for a science of management that used rational, evidence-based techniques and analytical methods to inform and improve decisions of all kinds. The result [...]

2019-08-14T13:07:58-04:00Complexity Matters Posts|

Humans, Technology and Complexity: Perks and Perils and Ageless Questions

The crashes of two Boeing 737 Max jets that took the lives of 346 people in less than five months were preceded by a complex series of engineering, economic, corporate and regulatory decisions whose combined interplay contributed to tragic unintended consequences. The fallout from the two disasters in Indonesia and Ethiopia is no less complex. Government oversight responsibilities, corporate practices and the impact of intense airline business competition are under scrutiny as the investigations of [...]