Curating Content To Support Learning About Humanity's Transition

Posts tagged with:  Polemic

By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 28 Sep 21

To continue from my post of yesterday, and with less intent to be polemical, but definite intent to disturb, I want to advocate an approach to design and development within organisations that is based on creating an ecology in which good things (some of which cannot be anticipated) are more rather than less likely to emerge.  Coupled with that is the institution of distributed feedback loops that allow emergent patterns of behaviour to become visible enough, early enough, that the cost of amplification or dampening is low.  This also picks up on my earlier post on learning in organisations (the …

Of people, roles and ritual (2 of n) Read More »

To continue from my post of yesterday, and with less intent to be polemical, but definite intent to disturb, I want to advocate an approach to design and development within organisations that is based on creating an ecology in which good things (some of which cannot be anticipated) are more rather than less likely to emerge.  Coupled with that is …

Of people, roles and ritual (2 of n) Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 27 Sep 21

From time to time I am invited to speak at The Stoa, a group that got together at the start of the pandemic and has continued since.  Always an interesting group although some of their sessions verge on the esoteric end of new-age fluffy bunnydom.  I did a whole series for them on Naturalising Sense-making and at the end of follow up session (I think on Intuition and Anticipation) I casually mentioned that I could speak for hours, from personal experience, on the subject of “HR Bullshit” and was promptly taken up on the offer.  You can listen to the …

Of people, roles and ritual (1 of n) Read More »

From time to time I am invited to speak at The Stoa, a group that got together at the start of the pandemic and has continued since.  Always an interesting group although some of their sessions verge on the esoteric end of new-age fluffy bunnydom.  I did a whole series for them on Naturalising Sense-making and at the end of …

Of people, roles and ritual (1 of n) Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 14 Sep 21

The road to hell, they say is paved with good intentions and nothing is more frustrating in the general field of sense-making and complexity work than when you encounter said practice.  To a degree, this picks up and extends my post of a few days ago, albeit it with a substantially more polemical style.  In that post, I pointed out the general issue of assuming trying to create context-free solutions in a context-specific world, the Manichæism inherent in the fad cycle and the use of language, easily adopted as an ideal, without any real need to really change.  I also …

Prevarication by platitude Read More »

The road to hell, they say is paved with good intentions and nothing is more frustrating in the general field of sense-making and complexity work than when you encounter said practice.  To a degree, this picks up and extends my post of a few days ago, albeit it with a substantially more polemical style.  In that post, I pointed out …

Prevarication by platitude Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 25 Aug 21

Back from holiday (of which more tomorrow) and a chance to pick up the blog agai as well as to reconnect with ‘civilisation’ in general.  Part of that return was marking 2nd September 2022 (not that is not a typo) in the diary for the release of Amazon’s mini-series based on the Silmarillion.  I’ve been looking forward to this with a degree of feat and trembling for some time.  Peter Jackson’s take on Lord of the Rings was generally OK but the second film with its trivialisation of the role of Faramir really annoyed me.  It’s a central turning point …

…the eye was bewildered Read More »

Back from holiday (of which more tomorrow) and a chance to pick up the blog agai as well as to reconnect with ‘civilisation’ in general.  Part of that return was marking 2nd September 2022 (not that is not a typo) in the diary for the release of Amazon’s mini-series based on the Silmarillion.  I’ve been looking forward to this with …

…the eye was bewildered Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 24 Jul 21

This post picks up on the idea of shallow monogamy in my post of a few days ago looking at some of the obstacles to the adoption of complexity thinking.  The other two types were lotus-eating, meaning a retreat from reality, and the Magpie who collects bright and shiny things with little or no understanding of their use, or coherence as to their connectivity.  The trouble is that once you name a thing it becomes very difficult to disconnect from seeing other examples, both well-intentioned and narcissistic alike.  The net result was a brief tweet suggesting that skimming (or skipping) stone was a …

Too fast, too soon? Read More »

This post picks up on the idea of shallow monogamy in my post of a few days ago looking at some of the obstacles to the adoption of complexity thinking.  The other two types were lotus-eating, meaning a retreat from reality, and the Magpie who collects bright and shiny things with little or no understanding of their use, or coherence as to their …

Too fast, too soon? Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 19 Jul 21

Two interesting sets of interactions on social media triggered today’s post.  One was a distinction made between cutting down a tree and trimming a hedge.  That one came from a tweet by Sonja in which she said “I liked the analogy of hedge trimming vs tree felling. When you decide to cut down a tree, you can’t stop halfway and change your mind. But when trimming a hedge, you may start with one idea but you can change your mind and modify that plan as you go along.”  She was picking up on a Forbes article by Bryce Hoffman of …

Pleaches, Liggers & the ‘C’ words Read More »

Two interesting sets of interactions on social media triggered today’s post.  One was a distinction made between cutting down a tree and trimming a hedge.  That one came from a tweet by Sonja in which she said “I liked the analogy of hedge trimming vs tree felling. When you decide to cut down a tree, you can’t stop halfway and …

Pleaches, Liggers & the ‘C’ words Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 18 Jul 21

We live, as the Chinese curse tells us, in interesting times;  and those times, to paraphrase Lincoln require us to both think anew and act anew.  As ever any radical change is “piled high with difficulty” to extend the Lincoln quote.  It was true in 1862 and it is true today.  A lot of difficulty lies in the fact that during times of change there are various candidates and they need to build some form of momentum. What I might deem the Complexity Turn which lies in a new synthesis of science and the humanities is at that point.  Covid, …

At the Complexity turn … Read More »

We live, as the Chinese curse tells us, in interesting times;  and those times, to paraphrase Lincoln require us to both think anew and act anew.  As ever any radical change is “piled high with difficulty” to extend the Lincoln quote.  It was true in 1862 and it is true today.  A lot of difficulty lies in the fact that …

At the Complexity turn … Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 7 Jun 21

I’m going to assume that everyone who frequents this blog and is a regular reader of Dave’s work is very familiar with general concepts of evolution, both as a biological fact and as a metaphor. In the Cynefin framework, evolution appears most prominently in exaptive practice, associated with the complex domain. Exaptation in that context is defined as radical repurposing and it is key to how innovation often happens in complexity. The term exaptation was proposed as an additional process to adaptation by the evolutionary biologist (and a personal favourite) Stephen Jay Gould, most famously outlined in a 1982 essay …

How the elephant got his trunk: what evolution can teach us about complexity Read More »

I’m going to assume that everyone who frequents this blog and is a regular reader of Dave’s work is very familiar with general concepts of evolution, both as a biological fact and as a metaphor. In the Cynefin framework, evolution appears most prominently in exaptive practice, associated with the complex domain. Exaptation in that context is defined as radical repurposing …

How the elephant got his trunk: what evolution can teach us about complexity Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 7 Jun 21

Anthro complexity I’m going to assume that everyone who frequents this blog and is a regular reader of Dave’s work is very familiar with general concepts of evolution, both as a biological fact and as a metaphor. In the Cynefin framework, evolution appears most prominently in exaptive practice, associated with the complex domain. Exaptation in that context is defined as radical repurposing and it is key to how innovation often happens in complexity. The term exaptation was proposed as an additional process to adaptation by the evolutionary biologist (and a personal favourite) Stephen Jay Gould, most famously outlined in a …

How the elephant got his trunk: what evolution can teach us about complexity Read More »

Anthro complexity I’m going to assume that everyone who frequents this blog and is a regular reader of Dave’s work is very familiar with general concepts of evolution, both as a biological fact and as a metaphor. In the Cynefin framework, evolution appears most prominently in exaptive practice, associated with the complex domain. Exaptation in that context is defined as …

How the elephant got his trunk: what evolution can teach us about complexity Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 4 May 21

So I’m back at the desk in my study, driven home from two weeks walking and cycling in the Lake District by Atlantic storms a day early.  I’ve found a perfect self-catering location that is reasonably priced and within 90 minutes of the bulk of the walks.  I’m on a mission (the obsessional collector aspect of my nature) to complete all the 214 Wainwright fells in 40 days and as of today, I am on 98 in 17 days.  But for the storm, I would have been 102 in 18 days so somewhat frustrated and if it hadn’t been for …

Coherence and ‘truth’ Read More »

So I’m back at the desk in my study, driven home from two weeks walking and cycling in the Lake District by Atlantic storms a day early.  I’ve found a perfect self-catering location that is reasonably priced and within 90 minutes of the bulk of the walks.  I’m on a mission (the obsessional collector aspect of my nature) to complete …

Coherence and ‘truth’ Read More »


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