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Dave Snowden
Dave Snowden
Sense Making | Complexity Science applied to organisations | Founder, Cognitive Edge
Sense Making | Complexity Science applied to organisations | Founder, Cognitive Edge

Derived from David’s LinkedIn Profile and Wikipedia page:

David is currently working on the application of natural sciences to social systems through the development of a range of methods and the SenseMaker® software suite. He is known for the development of the Cynefin framework and is the founder and chief scientific officer of Cognitive Edge, a  management consulting firm specializing in complexity and sensemaking.


  • Sensemaking
  • Knowledge Management
  • Complexity Science applied to organisations
  • Narrative 


Cognitive Edge
Making sense of complexity in order to act

Absorb uncertainty, create resilience, detect weak signals


From the website:

Cognitive Edge was founded in 2005 with the objective of building methods, tools and capability to utilise insights from Complex Adaptive Systems theory and other scientific disciplines in social systems. This approach, known variously as Naturalising Sensemaking and Cognitive Complexity has developed three main focus areas:

The development of SenseMaker® – a software ecology which integrates decision support, research, monitoring and knowledge management

Comprehensive global education programme –  a broad network of practitioners able to use the methods and tools developed by Cognitive Edge.  Approximately 2,700+ Network Members now exist both within organisations and as independents

The research agenda – acknowledged by the Academy of Management with two awards for the Cynefin framework, which is at the heart of the approach




Web Properties

Dave Snowden Twitter

Recent Content

Last 50 posts on own channels (YouTube, Podcast, Medium or Website/Blog):

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Recent Videos and Podcasts where Dave Snowden has been interviewed

Does anyone know of anyone who knows anything about complexity who would ever say this? Or anyone for that matter. No sources in the post so wondering if it has any basis in reality? …Read more
Further to my last comment making ‘academic’ or ‘intellectual’ (the people who do know the context) into something ‘other’ to excuse ignorance and sell their particular practice. It’s not ‘fit’ for purpose. Make it easy to understand & practice but please show some authenticity …Read more
One of the worst of modern consultancy habits is to take a phrase from a philosopher and misappropriate it to give their work an air of profundity, but without reading said philosopher to understand the context of said phrase. …Read more
That’s called political leadership. Gravitas …Read more
We are starting to see a similar patter in the UK, but the US position is more serious: American Democracy Faces Its Greatest Test Yet: Saving Itself by @umairh …Read more
Confusing theory with principles is a common error. In effect principles are a form of heuristic to aid navigation in the future. Explicitly linked to sound theory they have value, otherwise they are just a point of view. …Read more
RT @Cardiff_Rugby: Less than 24 hours until tickets for the first five home games of the season are available to purchase. 🔴 @Munsterrugby – Sept 16 (19.35) 🦁 @LionsRugbyCo – Sept 30 (19.35) 🐉 @dragonsrugby – Oct 15 (17.15) ⚡️ @THESTORMERS – Oct 22 (19.35) 🏰 @EdinburghRugby – Oct 30 (15.00) …Read more
RT @rorysutherland: Doner kebabs and curry are often denigrated because drunk men like them. But surely the foods we crave when drunk are the greatest of all foods, since they are what our brains, free of all pretension, really want to eat. Noone ever said “I could kill for a canapé right now.” …Read more
Restaurant where the CKO of the company I was working told me I might make it as a consultant,a keynote, or an academic but I had to choose one. She then asserted she was one of a small number who could do all 3. Never heard of her again after that contract; I paid for the meal …Read more
The circular building has so many memories from my first trip to Sydney in IBM days …Read more
I know I shouldn’t say this (especially when I am in Wellington shortly), but when Wales collapsed catastrophically from a dominant position in World Rugby after the 70s we brought in three New Zealand Coaches in succession – 2nd and 3rd the best. Maybe it’s time to reciprocate? …Read more
We need more people to call out shallow thinking …Read more
RT @rrtrent892: @christopbramley @NigelThurlow I really really enjoyed the OODA series that @NigelThurlow put together with all of you in it. And to conclude the series with @snowded joining in was just epic. …Read more
RT @IGN: The Sandman is everything longtime fans could have dreamed of in an adaptation. Our review: …Read more
So with the National Park closing the Otley section of the Coastal Path, instead of being over half way through a 19 mile walk I am clearing email while batch watching Sandman 🙁 …Read more
RT @SingleBlade1: @runteachtravel If we decide what WE think so many in earlier generations missed… & then work to ensure the next generation does NOT miss those things… nothing of consequence will (or should) change – but see 👇 & follow links to @snowded’s “…intire of it selfe” 🤔 …Read more
Anyone in Sydney area know if the coastal path from Otford to Bundeena is walkable? There is a May statement that there is a closure between Garie and Little Garie …Read more
RT @TheCynefinCo: Can’t make the upcoming Retreat in innovation in community engagement in person? Join our Virtual Watch Stream to view all plenary sessions and reflect back in dedicated community spaces. Book now in GBP or AU dollars £ – AU $ …Read more
Dangers of online social interaction and a lack of empathy which more naturally develops in offline play and encounter …Read more
Just to help out Shallow ‘Al, the way you know if someone used a concept is if they reference it. The fact that early papers may have been around in a vast field of work is different. Of course you would have to be familiar with attribution to understand this …Read more
RT @Complexability: @JoelBackwell @rashmir @theasnow @CynefinCentre @snowded @bethansmith93 Linking with the Yarns there is a workshop with Dave Snowden in Brisbane Aug 16. See for details …Read more
RT @christopbramley: @snowded I’ve found a number of people claiming imposter syndrome as a form of attention-seeking or excuse for poor behaviour. I’ve found the same for claims of autism. As someone with both, I do not find it helpful or acceptable, especially when sometimes it’s a genuine struggle. …Read more
Seriously impressed with @MAS who not only found my kindle in KL but then shipped it to Sydney for me to pick up …Read more
It’s an old pattern. You lay off people committed to public service. The people can’t get their passports on time, tax collection isn’t done so you let contracts to consultants at very high rates. Then when you want a retirement job … …Read more
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