Discover a powerful new lens for viewing the world with fascinating implications for our companies, economies, societies, and planet as a whole.
What causes one system to break down and another to rebound? Are we merely subject to the whim of forces beyond our control? Or, in the face of constant disruption, can we build better shock absorbers—for ourselves, our communities, our economies, and for the planet as a whole?
Reporting firsthand from the coral reefs of Palau to the back streets of Palestine, Andrew Zolli and Ann Marie Healy relate breakthrough scientific discoveries, pioneering social and ecological innovations, and important new approaches to constructing a more resilient world. Zolli and Healy show how this new concept of resilience is a powerful lens through which we can assess major issues afresh: from business planning to social development, from urban planning to national energy security—circumstances that affect us all.
Provocative, optimistic, and eye-opening, Resilience sheds light on why some systems, people, and communities fall apart in the face of disruption and, ultimately, how they can learn to bounce back.
This intriguing, wide-ranging probe ponders the underlying principles behind whether complex systems of every sort government, business, social, natural function or fail. Zolli, director of the global innovation network PopTech, and financial and technology journalist Healy ask: since "olatility of all sorts has become the new normal," is it even possible to isolate causal factors in an ever more complex world? Their findings emphasize the importance of examining the importance of elemental interconnectedness in contrast to isolating and addressing features individually. To demonstrate deep linkages between apparently unrelated events, they cite the role Hurricane Katrina played leading up to the 2007 Mexican food riots. This is followed by analyses of international terrorism, the 2008 financial crisis, and the ad hoc international effort to assist Haiti following its catastrophic 2010 earthquakes. Indeed, the term "adhocracy," coined by 1970s futurist Alvin Toffler, is invoked to describe the spontaneous coalition of forces that the digital age makes possible. Throughout, Zolli and Healy commendably avoid simplistic nostrums and note a potential problem: that increased systemic complexity can itself be a source of fragility. And while the measurement and feedback that illuminate a system's health are vital, even they occasionally bite back. The authors emphasize "there are no finish lines here and no silver bullets," though their vision is optimistic and should engage anyone contemplating our shared future.