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Failures do not happen overnight

Jim Rohn’s quote “Failure is not a single, cataclysmic event. You don’t fail overnight. Instead, failure is a few errors in judgment, repeated every day”. That quote struck a chord with the recent failure at Oroville dam, as indeed failures do not happen overnight. In Oroville dam “sudden” crisis we can quote various historic deviances Here is a tenative list of historic deviances: Oroville Dam annual inspections carried by State of California Division of Safety of Dam found water “seepage”…

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The singularity scenario

The singularity scenario is well known. AI becomes overnight smarter than us. We become a hazard (aren’t we already?) to our planet, generating consequences, hence risks. Machines get rid of us because of that very reason and because we may hinder their mission. It is only a matter of point of view, right? Before that night AI was only 50% as smart than us. The giant “last night” leap is the result of exponential growth. We have all seen it…

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It is not necessary to invoke chaos, “complexity” and “irrational methods” to solve problems

This week we discuss why it is not necessary to invoke chaos, “complexity” and “irrational methods” to solve problems corporations and governments face when dealing with risks and uncertainties. A historic view In the mid-60s Peter L. Bernstein’s 1996 wrote a book entitled “Against the Gods, the remarkable story of risk”. The book offered a historic view of risk management and the forces which drove it. Voices have raised since claiming that accepted risk management practices have reached their obsolescence point.…

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Hazard identification. Is it a science or an art?

In risk management terms, forecasting the future relies on Hazard identification. Is it a science or an art? Please notice we are talking about hazard identification and not risk identification for a very specific reason. We want to avoid confusion and enable proper analysis. Others, following for example General Motors’ journey to establish a Risk Sensing function, take a short cut and try to identify risks. What can go wrong is a hazard. Hazards have consequences and the hazard-consequence couple is a…

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