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Publisher's Summary

Katrina. Haiti. BP. Fukushima. The Great Recession. Those are just a few of the catastrophic disruptions the world has endured in recent years. As we try to respond to such crises, key questions arise: What causes one system to break under great stress and another to rebound? How much change can a complex system absorb while still retaining its purpose and function? What characteristics make it adaptive to change?
Through original reporting ranging across disciplines including finance, neuroscience, oceanography, and social psychology, the authors explore how in answering these questions, the new science of resilience can help our institutions become more sustainable, enduring, and humane in the face of cataclysmic events. Provocative and eye-opening, Resilience sheds light on the multifaceted nature of change and gives readers access to cutting-edge tools - developed by the leading thinkers of our time - to help us adapt to an ever-evolving world rather than fall prey to its unpredictability.
©2012 Andrew Zolli and Ann Marie Healy. Recorded by arrangement with Free Press, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc. (P)2012 HighBridge Company
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Critic Reviews

"In an increasingly complex world, we can't avoid shocks - we can only build better shock absorbers. This is a brilliant exploration of how best to do that, told with compelling examples and stories." (Chris Anderson, Editor in Chief of Wired, best-selling author of The Long Tail)
"[Helps] us all understand the importance of planning for the future, even when it means giving up some short-term gains." (Dan Ariely, James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Behavioral Economics at Duke University, author of Predictably Irrational)
"Smart and sophisticated, this is a landmark work in a new field. If you are part of a system that wants to avoid collapse, read this book." (David Eagleman, Neuroscientist, author of Incognito and Why the Net Matters)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
1 out of 5 stars
By Doug on 07-18-12

Totally Misleading Title

The title should have been "Disillusionment: Bizarre Behavior From the Fringe"

This is not a book about resilience. It is almost about the opposite. The author focuses on individuals, societies, and species that have NOT adapted well to modern world and he details the exhaustive efforts required to sustain them. At one point, the author suggests that during the housing market collapse in 2008, world bankers should have colluded to keep ALL the bad banks afloat. Collusion for crisis-avoidance is NOT resilience.

The book looks at people who design elaborate schemes to solve very local problems that simply do not apply everywhere. Although these people are admirable for sure...they are the exceptions and their complicated measures could never be applied to six billion people. And ultimately, their story is not what I signed on for when I bought this book. Spend your credit somewhere else.

True resilience occurs DURING a crisis in ways you or I could not imagine. Resilience emerges from untidy and terrible circumstances. It???s dark and traumatic. Resilience stands out in that NOT all survive the crisis (literally or figuratively). Resilience cannot be simply programmed into everyone like a line of computer code. The author???s true aim is for everyone to be programmed as resilient to avoid future calamities. It???s a paradox. To achieve this, the author begins to confuse resilience with CONTROL OF RESOURCES. To achieve THAT, he would also need to eliminate disagreement and opposing viewpoints over the use of those resources. Avoiding a crisis is NOT resilience. It???s the antithesis of what CREATES resilience.

Unpredictable things are just that...unpredictable. Even the most extreme preventive measures are vulnerable to the same unpredictability and failure.

Building a Maginot Line to save the Titanic is not the answer.

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20 of 24 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Andy on 08-09-12

crowdsourcing and symbiosis in nature and humanity

Super narration! Resilience does a great job of laying out the benefits of crowdsourcing and symbiosis in nature and humanity. Tons of great examples of what prevents total catastrophe, as well as strategies for rapid recovery when things go wrong.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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