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The Dream Cafe: Lessons in the Art of Radical Innovation by Duncan D. Bruce, Dr Geoff Crook

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CCHAOS

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The word ‘chaos’ tends to be associated with a negative stereotype of disruption, which casts it as the enemy of strategy and profit. If you have witnessed the disintegration of your best laid plans because of the unpredictable intervention of the ‘hand of fate’, you will find it difficult to accept the possibility that chaos has a benign side.

The evolution of the Ancient Greek scientific method was born out of a quest to comprehend and ultimately manage the random or chaotic character of nature, in order to make life more predictable. This ambition, and the methodologies that supported it, became part of the post-enlightenment quest to use scientific method as an engine of sustainable economic growth through industrialization.

It is because we have been conditioned to trust in logic that we find it all too easy to mistrust our intuition. This prompts us to view chaos as the enemy of progress. However, this brief defence of chaos as a vital source of disruptive opportunity will appear completely counter intuitive to the belief that progress is forever rational. And we can easily correct this misunderstanding by looking back into history. There, we discover that many of the ideas, inventions and brands that have shaped our sense of human progress have emerged from unpredictable, chaotic and ultimately magical coincidences. As the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche put it: ...

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