The Logic of Failure by Dietrich Dorner

book jacket the logic of failure

The Logic of Failure: Why things go  wrong and what we can do to make them right by Dietrich Dörner (1989).

Thinking habits and inclinations and illogical methods result in failures to correctly asses risk/rewards, consequences, and effectiveness of any particular decision. These errors compound when a bad decision results in a doubling down of the bad decision rather than accepting the failure and changing method of thinking and plans. Unintended consequences devastate the best planned interventions to solve social ills, business strategy, and pretty much all decision making.

Unrecognized assumptions of thinking in a complex world cause massive harm. Further pushed to the negative consequences if the same kind of thinking attempts to correct the flaws.

“Patterns of thought — such as taking one thing at a time, cause and effect, and linear thinking — cannot work in a world we now recognize as ecologies, complex interactive self-balancing (before humans decided to “tame” and exert dominion over all) systems.

This is an excellent book! Good read. The funny part is that even though it is an older book, some rascal put a reserve on it at the library so I couldn’t renew it! How crazy is that! I think I heard about it on book TV or something so maybe there are other book TV people who follow up on referenced works. But since it is not a current publication, I can’t imagine or remember why it would have been there. So it must have been referenced in some other book I read. Darn it, I am going to have to start making reading genealogy trees.

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Urban Planning ed. by Andrew I. Cavin

book jacket photo Chicago skylineUrban Planning [part of The Reference Shel series] edited by Andrew I. Cavin (2003)

This book provides multiple points of view by many authors on various aspects of managing and visualizing what would be best for cities to implement to meet contemporary needs. I have lived all over the country and in all kinds of sizes of cities and geology and weather and with all kinds of transportation options or lack of options. I visited many more cities, here and I have been to multiple countries in Europe always using public transportation and once in a tour bus. I took the most terrifying taxi ride of my life in Boston during The Big Dig. Another Boston experience that didn’t work out like I thought it would involved taking the T with a roller suitcase and finding the streets piled with several feet of snow and still snowing while I tried to get from the T stop to the hotel. Roller suitcases do not slide on snow, they become snow shovels.

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People Habitat: 25 Ways to Think About Greener, Healthier Cities

book jacket people habitat nice photos of charming town sitesPeople Habitat: 25 Ways to Think About Greener, Healthier Cities by F. Kaid Benfield (2014)

One thing that none of the pushers for multi-family dwellings ever address involves NEIGHBORS. Single-family dwellings are desirable over anything else — not because people have no interest in environmental impact — but because dealing with other people can be a nightmare. Thin walls are not funny in reality.  Even single homes can have issues: Good fences make good neighbors!

Unless some law or soundproofing regulations or roving enforcers with martial arts skills are part of every multi-family dwelling, the problems of conflicts between people will still drive people who can afford it to buy single-family homes. Plus they are going to want big lots so there is distance between them and still noisy neighbors.

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The Age of Sustainable Development by Jeffrey D. Sachs

book jacketThe Age of Sustainable Development by Jeffrey D. Sachs (2015)

This is a book worth reading despite some egregious realities that are not even touched on at all (disability). It has a massive scope ranging from poverty and economics to healthcare and fertility, biodiversity and climate change, and more. With pictures! And graphs!

More than a bit depressing and overwhelming too since we humans were gifted with brains and mainly chose to use for exploitation and degradation of all of earth and life of all kinds.

I wanted it to read the chapter (11) on “Resilient Cities”

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