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Complexity Course and New Book

Wednesday, March 23, 2011   (1 Comments)
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Complexity Learning Opportunities: 

1. A New Course from Santa Fe Institute
2. A New Book from Anthony L Suchman, David J Sluyter and Penelope R Williamson  

Exploring Complexity in Science and Engineering from a Santa Fe Institute Perspective
Monday, May 23 - Wednesday, May 25, 2011  
University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM  
Course director: Melanie Mitchell, Professor, Portland State University and Santa Fe Institute.

This two-and-a-half day course is an intensive, immersive tour of the sciences of complexity, a broad set of efforts that seek to explain how large-scale complex, organized, and adaptive behavior can emerge from simple interactions among myriad individuals. This course, sponsored by the Santa Fe Institute, is specifically designed for professionals, faculty, students, and others who are curious to explore and apply this new interdisciplinary scientific approach.  This course has no prerequisites and requires no specific math or science background.  

Faculty and Topics:              
Melanie Mitchell: Dynamics and Chaos, Genetic Algorithms and Biologically Inspired Computing, Information Processing and Computation in Complex Systems              
Aaron Clauset: Networks             
Uri Wilensky: Agent-Based Modeling             
David Krakauer: Complexity in Biology             
W. Brian Arthur: The Nature of Technology             
J. Doyne Farmer:  Predicting Technological Progress 

Tuition: General: $1,200; Faculty/Postdocs: $800; Full-time Students: $500 
For more information, go to or e-mail 

Leading Change in Healthcare: transforming organizations using complexity, positive psychology and relationship-centered care by Anthony L Suchman, David J Sluyter and Penelope R Williamson, with forewords by Peter Block, Carol Aschenbrener and Ralph Stacey.  

Transform your management and administrative skills and improve the performance of your healthcare organization with strategies that are as evidence based as they are humane. This book presents a practical new approach to organizational culture change called Relationship-centered Administration. It integrates methods from complexity science, positive psychology, and Relationship-centered Care, all of which converge on the idea of leading by participating mindfully and authentically in each moment. The authors present principles and show them in action – not just the end results, but also how the techniques look and feel in everyday work.  Drawing on case studies from primary care, hospitals, long-term care, professional education, international NGO’s and other settings, the authors show how organizational change begins with new patterns of communicating and relating at a personal level. They demonstrate that courage and authenticity are essential ingredients for leading change,that control is impossible and not-knowing often a virtue, and that leadership is more about taking the risk of acting in a new way than it is about having the right answers. They also teach about the many paradoxes of organizational change – exerting influence without having control, changing what’s wrong by focusing on what’s right, and changing organization-wide patterns of interaction by attending to patterns at a very local level. They demonstrate the concept of emergent design – the limitations of planning and the need to honor the unpredictable and serendipitous course of collaborative process coupled with the need for a steadfast vision and unwavering belief in the capacity of others. For ordering information and a 20% discount code, visit      


Tim Casey says...
Posted Thursday, March 24, 2011
I attended the SFI workshop in Portland last year. Well worth it.

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