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W6 making decisions in risky situations - barry quirk

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  • 1. Risky Business: the essence of local government Barry Quirk CE at LB Lewisham
  • 2. deciding in conditions of uncertainty
    • the human gift of forethought
    • the benefit of hindsight
    • striking a balance between reckless certainty and feckless fatalism
    • all choice involves differing degrees of chance and probability
    • appraising risk – from natural hazards to man-made risks
    • conventional approaches ...
  • 3. risks that challenge local government
    • environmental risks
    • economic risks
    • risks to people (vulnerability)
      • risks from people (threat)
    • technological risks
        • system-wide risks
        • operational risks
    • risk of service outcome failure
        • policy failure
        • implementation failure
    • our prevailing mental model ...
  • 4.
    • LARCI study on risk and uncertainty
    • examine issues afresh with an aim to offer politicians and professionals more useful tools to help them deal with risk and uncertainty
    • three types of input
      • Risk experts from Cranfield University and elsewhere
      • Elected Councillors making ever tougher decisions
      • Professional officers advising and implementing
    • canvas of new approaches, new thinking, new practice
  • 5. why does risk appetite vary?
    • attention commensurate with risk
      • we think that high risk requires high control which will in turn lower the risk. Is that so?
    • risk of service failure varies with organisation and service
    • our nature varies ... risk junkies – cautious calculators – risk avoiders
    • in some organisations failure breeds caution through personalised criticism ... always stress accountability; seldom blame
  • 6. “ Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try Again. Fail again. Fail better.” Samuel Beckett secret of success - learn fast from trial and error