Dave Snowden’s Blog

Clusters in the tail

27 Oct 14 · 10:05 pm

A very satisfying first day in our Small Countries Big Ideas programme held overlooking the harbour here in Caernarfon.  The turn out has been good with a lot of potential synergies between the participants' potential projects.   Today we focused on the intractable problems and issues faced in government as well as a range of NHS issues.  Tomorrow we will create a matrix between populations, problems and perspectives from which we will define the starting point for emergent solutions.   I'll post more on that tomorrow but it's a big expansion of what we used to call a QQE matrix and a part of the new approach to scaling in systems that will be a big feature of the coming London course.

One of the key points I made in my opening comments is aptly summed up by the Gaping Void cartoon that opens this post.  Too much of what we do in both public and private sector focuses on the mean of a bell curve.  The reality is that its rarely that simple and the tails of distributions are fatter than most policy makers realise.  Something that this YouTube presentation runs through (although the slides and message need some updating when I get a chance).  

The reality is that most threat and opportunity is to be found in the tails of distributions not in their centre.  Now a lot of people have realised the dangers of working to an average or to that matter to crude categories, but their solution has been to swing the pendulum to...

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Guest Blog

Guided hike across the Glyders

By Jules K. Yim  ·  23 Oct 14  ·  2:59 am

As Dave mentioned in his blog post about Small Countries, there will be a guided hike across the Glyders on the 26th October, starting 10:30 at Ogwen Cottage. (Paid parking there or free parking along the road to the east)

The initial walk is open to all, and requires no more than trainers / sneakers and the usual rain jackets etc.; as we ascend the Devil’s Kitchen people can choose to drop out and continue around the lake.

After that it's a rough scree walk to the top of Glyder Fawr – this portion requires proper waterproof mountain boots and probably gloves and headwear to be safe – then a glorious walk over the top to Glyder Fach but with a lot of large loose rocks so it will be slow going. After that we descend to the old Minder Road and track to Bwlch Tryfan and return.

Those interested in photos of the trail can find them on Dave's Flickr – please get in touch with me Jules if you'd like to be included in the walk. Car-pooling from Caernarfon and/or Bangor may be...

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