30 Jun 2016

Future Seminar in London: Policy Making Using Modelling in a Complex World, 18th July

"Policy Making Using Modelling in a Complex World" will be held on 18th July 2016 at the Food Standards Agency, 125 Kingsway, London  1-2pm (12.45pm prompt registration)

Presented by Professor Bruce Edmonds, Director of the Manchester Metropolitan University Business School.

Seminar Abstract:
The consequences of complexity in the real world are discussed together with some meaningful ways of understanding and managing such situations.  The implications of such complexity are that many social systems are fundamentally unpredictable by nature, especially when in the presence of structural change (transitions). This implies consequences for the way we model, but also for the way models are used in the policy process.

We discuss the problems arising from a too narrow focus on quantification in managing complex systems, in particular those of optimisation. We criticise some of the approaches that ignore these difficulties and pretend to approximately forecast using the impact of policy options using over-simple models.  However, lack of predictability does not automatically imply a lack of managerial possibilities. We will discuss how some insights and tools from "Complexity Science" can help with such management.  Managing complex systems requires a good understanding of the dynamics of the system in question - to know, before they occur, some of the real possibilities that might occur and be ready so they can be reacted to as responsively as possible. Agent based simulation will be discussed as a tool that is suitable for this task, especially in conjunction with model-informed data visualisation.

*Refreshments available, please bring your own lunch.

The event is free but you need to register at: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/cecan-seminar-policy-making-using-modelling-in-a-complex-world-tickets-26323569505


17 Jun 2016

Remember what a dump the UK was back in 1973 before we joined the EU

Of course this was not all to do with the EU, but the attitudes have changed a lot, from a largely failing inward-looking country to a creative outward-looking one. The migration of people to and from the EU helped in this change. We have had a flood of creative, hard working people entering the UK contributing towards our academic, business, financial, sporting, artistic and high-tech sectors. Please let us not go back - we were not great then at all.