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Networks and Complexity (1)

Dave Snowden

Complex human systems, such as organizations, communities or economies, go hand-in-hand with networks. Networks can reveal various structures and various layers in complex systems – the connections (links) between the components are key. The grey links show the reporting relationships.

AI Technologies Are Fundamentally Changing How Work Gets Done

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

To the contrary, automating the more routine parts of a job will often increase the productivity and quality of workers by complementing their skills with technologies and tools, thus enabling them to focus on those aspect of the job that most need their attention.

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The Productivity Puzzle

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Economic growth has two main components, productivity growth and the growth of the labor force. I ncreasing productivity is thus more crucial than ever to promote economic growth. But, in the US and other advanced economies, productivity growth has significantly slowed down over the past few decades. From 1987 to 2004 US labor productivity grew at a 2.1% Since 2011, the productivity rate has further declined to 0.6%. . US labor productivity grew at only 1.5%

AI and the Productivity Paradox

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

But, at the same time, productivity growth has significantly declined over the past decade, and income has continued to stagnate for the majority of Americans. This puzzling contradiction is addressed in Artificial Intelligences and the Modern Productivity Paradox , a working paper recently published by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). Economists have proposed competing explanations for declining productivity growth and so far have failed to reach a consensus.” .

The Productivity Paradox: Digital Abundance and Scarce Genius

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Despite the relentless advances of digital technologies, productivity growth has been declining over the past decade. Some contend, - most prominently Northwestern University economist Robert Gordon , - that over the past few decades there’s been a fundamental decline in innovation and productivity. Demographic change , namely, the declining population and labor force growth around the world, is another potential cause for slow economic growth.

AI and the Productivity Paradox

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

But, at the same time, productivity growth has significantly declined over the past decade, and income has continued to stagnate for the majority of Americans. This puzzling contradiction is addressed in Artificial Intelligences and the Modern Productivity Paradox , a working paper recently published by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). Economists have proposed competing explanations for declining productivity growth and so far have failed to reach a consensus.” .

No cookie cutters for complexity

Harold Jarche

Five years later, Dave Snowden makes a similar observation, sparked by a KPMG marketing brochure on “cutting through complexity” Dave concludes: If a consultancy firm really wants to help their clients they they should support them in living with complexity, riding its potential, avoiding reductionist approaches, engaging customer and staff in a sensing network. Making a value proposition around behaviour and culture change is therefore very difficult. complexit

The Complex Nature of Cloud-based Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

I find it helpful to look at cloud along two key dimensions: as a technology to improve IT productivity, and as a platform for enabling business innovation. In addition, cloud can help business users become more agile and keep up with the fast pace of technological and market changes. Incremental investments in productivity don’t drive growth. By now, most will agree that cloud computing is a major transformational force in the world of IT.

Leadership in a Changing World

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

What are the critical competencies needed to lead in our fast-changing business environment? Its findings were recently published in The CEO Report: Embracing the Paradoxes of Leadership and the Power of Doubt. The key challenge confronting CEOs, - and senior executives in general, - is the relentless pace of change. But, w hile speed is the major dimension of change, it’s not the only one. Is the change evolutionary or revolutionary in nature?

Change 156

Scale and Complex Systemic Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Conventional wisdom these days says that small is better when it comes to innovation and putting new ideas into practice,” writes Mandel at the beginning of the report. They are highly motivated to bring to market new products which offer significantly improved designs and/or lower costs, and thus gain competitive advantage and market share from the established leaders in their segment of the market.

System 162

Build trust, embrace networks, manage complexity

Harold Jarche

But hierarchies are rather useless to create, innovate, or change. We have known for quite a while that hierarchies are ineffective when things get complex. In matrix management people have more than one reporting line and often work across business units. The only way to change a hierarchical organization is to create a new hierarchy. Most organizations still deal with complexity through reorganization. Our thinking needs to continuously change as well.

Automation and the Changing Demand for Workforce Skills

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

In the intervening three years, the study has published a number of report on the subject. The first report , published in November, 2015, explored whether we can look forward to vast improvements in productivity and quality of life, or whether automation will mostly threaten jobs, disrupt organizations, and strain the social fabric. McKinsey’s December, 2017 report analyzed whether there will be enough work in the future.

Skills 187

How Can We Ensure that Our Complex AI Systems Do What We Want Them to Do?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Software-intensive systems are generally quite flexible, - able to evolve and adapt to changing product and market requirements. Things are even tougher with people-centric sociotechnical systems, which not only have to deal with potential software problems, but with the even more complex issues involved in human behaviors and interactions. What is it that makes these systems so intrinsically complex? What purpose does this complexity serve?

System 168

Human Capital and the Changing Nature of Work

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

But on balance, such fears appear to be unfounded, noted the World Bank in a comprehensive recent report on The Changing Nature of Work. That’s a mistake, because neglecting investments in human capital can dramatically weaken a country’s competitiveness in a rapidly changing world, one in which economies need ever-increasing amounts of talent to sustain growth.” . How is the Nature of Work Changing? People have long feared that machines are coming for our jobs.

Change 153

Social Learning, Complexity and the Enterprise

Harold Jarche

Organizations, in order to function, need to encourage social exchanges and social learning due to faster rates of business and technological changes. Social experience is adaptive by nature and a social learning mindset enables better feedback on environmental changes back to the organization. The Internet has fundamentally changed how we communicate on a scale as large as the printing press or the advent of written language. The little stuff is changing too fast.

Measuring the Forces of Long Term Change

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Intel co-founder Gordon Moore described what became known as Moore’s Law in a 1965 paper where he observed that the number of components in integrated circuits had doubled every year since their invention in 1958, and predicted that the trend would continue for at least ten years, a prediction he subsequently changed to a doubling every two years. The Foundation index has been growing at a ten percent CGR since 1993, and is the primary driver of all the other changes.

Change 200

On the Complex Evolution toward Mobile Digital Payments

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

In addition, by reaching out to financial institutions, merchants, application developers and others, Apple is helping bring together the different players in the payments ecosystem, something that’s absolutely essential to succeed in such a complex undertaking. Our existing payment system is quite complicated, somewhat expensive and difficult to change, but it actually works quite well, handling just about all transactions within a few seconds.

Game-Changing Basic Research: Benefits and Challenges

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Innovation Deficit , - a report on both the long term benefits of basic research and the impact on those benefits of declining federal investments. Over time, the innovations moved from the research labs to product development, and from there to the marketplace. But, technology and market environments have drastically changed in the intervening years. research leadership ultimately depends,” writes the MIT report. “In

Climate Change, Waste & Festivals: a collective fight needing a common understanding

Dave Snowden

it also has the potential to mobilise momentum and drive change through the sharing of stories about what people are doing to make the world a better place. Building small, incremental change has always been the complexity mantra. When thinking about change and transformation, we were particularly interested in the idea of apathy, simplicity and the importance of time, e.g. are people thinking ahead or are there “more important things to do”?

Change 193

Data Science and the Changing Nature of Research and Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The study examined the current state of US research and innovation; looked at the role of its key players: academia, industry, and government; and proposed a set of recommendations to better address the highly complex challenges we face in the 21st century information economy. Establishing productive collaborations between academia and industry has been difficult. Organizational structures and cultural attitudes are not keeping up with changing realities.

Data 194

The Complex Transition to the Age of the Cloud

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

a sea change - a deep and permanent shift in how computing power is generated and consumed. But, after discussing a number of its benefits to business, - individual productivity, group collaboration, information insights and application development, - McAfee points out that the shift to cloud computing has been slow. The IT function of 2015 will bear little resemblance to its current state,” concludes one such report.

Cloud and “Game Changing” Business Innovation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Earlier this year, IBM’s Institute for Business Value published a very good report - The Power of Cloud: Driving Business Model Innovation. According to the report “cloud empowers six potentially game changing business enablers”: . market adaptability - rapid prototyping and innovation to quickly respond to rapidly changing market conditions; . e-books is another widely used, game changing cloud application that is already transforming the book publishing industry.

Leveraging Commercial Best Practices to Maximize Government Productivity

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

On October 6, the Technology CEO Council released its report One Trillion Reasons: How Commercial Best Practices to Maximize Productivity Can Save Taxpayer Money and Enhance Government Services. The report identifes a set of recommendations aimed at reducing US government spending by one trillion dollars over the next decade. Both operate in increasingly fast-changing environments, which are subject to more frequent, serious and unpredictable problems.

The True Value of a Good Education: Adaptability to a Changing Environment

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

In his 1945 seminal report, Science The Endless Frontier , presidential science advisor Vannevar Bush laid out the blueprint for R&D in post-war America: “New knowledge can be obtained only through basic scientific research” conducted in universities and research labs, which is then applied to develop new products by the private sector and new and improved weapons by the defense sector.

How Covid Is Reordering the Global Economy

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

The covid-19 pandemic will accelerate change in the world economy,” says The Economist. Let me discuss the three key areas where The Economist expects long-lasting changes: globalization, digitization and inequality.

Issues 242

The Leader's Guide to Radical Management: 84% vote for change in.

Steve Denning

Management was originally invented,” management theorist Gary Hamel has noted, “to solve two problems: the first—getting semiskilled employees to perform repetitive activities competently, diligently, and efficiently; the second—coordinating those efforts in ways that enabled complex goods and services to be produced in large quantities. 84% vote for change I reported on Tuesday the shocking statistic that 84% of workers in the US plan to change jobs in 2011.

Change 141

Building Better Jobs in an Age of Intelligent Machines

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

On November 18, the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future released its final report , The Work of the Future: Building Better Jobs in an Age of Intelligent Machines. An interim report was released in September, 2019. The Task Force comprehensive report covers a lot of ground.

Data 215

Business or Pleasure? - why not both: The product-to-service.

Martijn Linssen

why not both Home About Contact Saturday, 21 August 2010 The product-to-service financial ratio Yesterday I saw a tweet by Frank Scavo : Chatting with a vendor about implementation cost to software license cost ratios. Back to the topic : there is a clear, direct and fairly linear relation between the initial cost of a product, and the additional cost(s) involved servicing it. In big IT companies, there isnt much enthusiasm to be found for selling Open Source products.

The Impact on Government of the Structural Changes in 21st Century Economies

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Most everyone agrees that economies and societies around the world are going through structural changes of a historical nature , driven by a number of powerful forces including digital technologies and globalization. Over the past two decades, companies, especially large, global companies, have been going through major transformations to help them adapt to these structural changes. there are pragmatic grounds now for politicians of all sorts to make the state more productive.

Change 138

Why Business Transformation Efforts Often Fail

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

It was thus important to analyze what distinguished successful corporate changes. “The most general lesson to be learned from the more successful cases is that the change process goes through a series of phases that, in total, usually require a considerable length of time.

The State of AI Adoption - High Performers Show the Way

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

A common theme throughout the report was that the same players who were leaders in the earlier waves of digitization and analytics were the early leaders in the AI wave. Nearly half, 47%, had embedded at least one AI capability in their standard business processes, but only 21% reported using AI across multiple business functions. Overall, 63% report revenue increases in the business unit where the AI use case is deployed.

Building Capacity for Social Change 2.0

Beth Kanter

This convening of ”network practitioners” (consultants and others who are working with or networks of people and organizations on social change goals) took place at the Packard Foundation and designed and facilitated by consultants Gigi Barsoum and Heather Grant-McLeod. The purpose was share insights and learn more about creating, supporting, and managing networks. Heather agreed to write up this report to share some of the content. Building Capacity for Social Change 2.0

The Collapse of Complex Business Models ? Clay Shirky

Clay Shirky

The Times’ Paywall and Newsletter Economics » The Collapse of Complex Business Models. In 1988, Joseph Tainter wrote a chilling book called The Collapse of Complex Societies. Every one of those groups had rich traditions, complex social structures, advanced technology, but despite their sophistication, they collapsed, impoverishing and scattering their citizens and leaving little but future archeological sites as evidence of previous greatness. Clay Shirky.

The Pace of Creative Destruction is Accelerating

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Shrinking company lifespans in the S&P 500 is a useful indicator of marketplace turbulence, driven to a large extent by technology disruptions and business model changes. According to the Innosight Forecast report , a few key megatrends are responsible for the market turbulence behind the changing makeup of the S&P 500. Change is often difficult for such companies. Disruptive change highlights the importance of continual business model innovation.

How Will the Pandemic Reshape Labor Markets?

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Autor and Reynolds are cochairs of the ongoing MIT Work of the Future task force, whose interim report was published in the (pre-Covid) Fall of 2019. Such changes in urban life would severely impact the employment prospects of urban non-college-educated service workers.

Issues 166

Irving Wladawsky-Berger: Innovation, Fundamental Research and Universities

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Irving Wladawsky-Berger A collection of observations, news and resources on the changing nature of innovation, technology, leadership, and other subjects. Main | A Grand Challenge Crying Out for Leadership » November 26, 2007 Innovation, Fundamental Research and Universities The October 13 issue of The Economist included a special report on innovation. The lead article set the stage when it said, "Rapid and disruptive change is now happening across new and old businesses.

The State of AI in the Enterprise

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Davenport was a co-author of both reports. 44% of respondents cited “enhanced current products” as the top AI benefit to their companies, followed closely by “optimizing internal operations” at 42%, and “make better decisions” at 35%. Around 40 % of respondents cited implementation difficulties, integrating AI into the company’s roles and functions, and data privacy and related data issues as their top challenges, not surprisingly for a complex technology in its early stages.

Survey 187

The Urgent Need to Strengthen the Nation’s Resilience

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

These included a significant expansion of government support for scientific research in universities and R&D labs, leading to product innovations from the private sector and better weapons from the defense industry, - and making the US the most prosperous and secure nation in the world. Something similar could happen to a company or economy too dependent on a few products, industries, processes or business models.

Price 168

power shifts

Harold Jarche

But it does imply vast changes in the way we see the world, create wealth, and exercise power. The report defines power as, “the ability to shape consequences” They identify three extreme forces that will affect the next decades. Climate Change.

Why Some AI Efforts Succeed While Many Fail

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Winning with AI , - a 2019 report based on a survey jointly conducted by the MIT Sloan Management Review and the Boston Consulting Group , - found that 90% of respondents agree that AI represents a business opportunity for their company. Many AI initiatives fail,” was the report’s overriding finding. “Seven out of 10 companies surveyed report minimal or no impact from AI so far. Companies often look to AI to help them cut costs and increase productivity.

Survey 155

The Business Value of Augmented Reality

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

We generally think of products as physical entities built with a combination of mechanical and electrical components, - e.g., appliances, cars, agricultural machines, industrial equipment, - some quite simple and some highly complex. Smart connected products are radically reshaping companies and exposing them to new competitive opportunities and threats, while altering industry boundaries and creating entirely new industries.

stories for the network age

Harold Jarche

Even combining the efforts of civil society, governments, and markets will not be enough to address our greatest challenges — climate change and environmental degradation. Each form builds on the other and changes it. Communities Complexity ConnectedEnterprise NetworkedLearning

Redefining Work - Leveraging Human Capabilities in a Future of Expanding Automation

Irving Wladawsky-Berger

Over the past few years, a number of papers , reports and books have addressed these very important questions. F or the most part, they view AI as mostly augmenting rather than replacing human capabilities, automating the more routine parts of a job and increasing the productivity and quality of workers, so they can focus on those aspect of the job that most require human attention. Given these predictions about the changing nature of work, what should companies do?

Report 178