Nudging people towards latrines

Nudging people towards latrines

Nice article today on the WorldBank and its behavioural change aims – my favourite piece was this: Toilets, for example. Nowhere is open defecation more prominent than in India, where more than 600 million people have no access to a toilet. But even where proper sanitation has been installed, “people tend not to want to […]

An amateur gumshoe

An amateur gumshoe

That was fun. On the bus last night from Paddington where I'm running the four one-day CSM courses with Dave Snowden. (Tomorrow is on narrative – shaping it, understanding it, researching it.  The next set will be in September – you really should be there! Book it here.) As the bus emptied at Warren Street […]

The real Mexico – getting past paranoia

The real Mexico – getting past paranoia

Dawn over Mexico City, 19th May 2014 It's hard to believe it's already been three weeks, but 19th-21st May, I was part of a conference in Mexico on Soft Power and Public Diplomacy with Wilton Park, a UK government-related agency that organises thought-provoking and timely conferences around international topics. The conference itself was excellent – […]

Pulling Insights from SenseMaker® – video now available

Pulling Insights from SenseMaker® – video now available

I recently ran a webinar with Michael Cheveldave about how to pull insights from SenseMaker® via the Cognitive Edge website.  We recorded the session and all the questions and answers – the video and supporting materials are all now available to Premium Network Members at the Cognitive Edge website. It's in the Library/Assemblies section – […]

Giants’ shoulders

Giants’ shoulders

As a result of teaching on the new Cynefin course this week, I’m re-thinking a couple of things that I’ve put at the centre of my practice recently. One of the core points that I’ve emphasised over the years in projects understanding audiences has been the dangers of relying too heavily on experts – in […]

The content/meaning distortion

The content/meaning distortion

Posting from the lounge in Cologne/Bonn airport after a meeting with a potential client around supporting a leadership/collaboration approach addressing and using some key issues around nationality and function. (At some point it will no doubt be worth a separate blog. But now's not that point.) I don't recall ever having been to Bonn before, […]

First, do no harm…

First, do no harm…

For example, I sat watching a group looking at intervening in a natural disaster situation – extremely effective, intelligent people coming up with interventions that would be “safe”: funding local villages to find their own water (on the basis that they may know about natural resources, but didn’t have the wherewithal to transport it). … The upshot is that, for all the fear of the “f-word”, safe-to-fail probes are relatively simple to produce: Do no harm Make them low-resource Make them situation-relevant (much easier if you have narrative material coming in) Monitor them Increase the diversity of people looking at the problem

Evaluating impact through stories

Evaluating impact through stories

How alternative storytelling can help impact evaluation It’s a great, plain English description of the method (something I rarely manage to produce, slipping into jargon too often). … Instead of looking for ways to “prove” x or y has happened, it offers a means to create a continual feedback loop where information is flowing in to help adjust delivery of programmes as time goes on.

Chase your goals – in the opposite direction

Chase your goals – in the opposite direction

One of the key concepts in dealing with complexity is the need to be indirect in pursuit of our goals.  I often refer to John Kay's book Obliquity – but here is the original article from the Financial Times from 2004 on the topic.  It suggests an idea that is very difficult to anyone who […]