Drift Into Failure
Date: 1:00 pm | Saturday 8 October 2011
Venue: Hetzel Theatre
Our technologies have gotten ahead of our theories. The growth of complexity in society has outpaced our understanding of how complex systems work and fail. While pursuing success in a dynamic environment, with goal conflicts and limited resources, many small decisions can eventually produce massive breakdowns – the GFC Montara. We drifted into failure. Yet afterwards we hunt for broken parts, fixable properties, and responsible people. Our analyses of complex system breakdowns remain depressingly linear, depressingly componential – imprisoned by Newton and Descartes. Sidney Dekker thinks we can use complexity theory to better understand how our systems fail, and perhaps find new ways of managing their drift.