Geneva Science and Diplomacy Anticipator

GESDA Board Member Sir Jeremy Farrar’s Best Reads

Mar 10, 2021

Continuation Bias – and relevance to political decision making in COVID;

> Facing ambiguous threats // Harvard Business Review
Ambiguous threats differ from threats with obvious causes — say, a fire in the building — for which the response is clear. They also differ from unmistakable threats that may lack straightforward response paths (such as the frightening oxygen-tank explosion aboard Apollo 13). However, when the warning sign is ambiguous and the threat’s potential impact is unclear, managers may ignore or discount the risk. Companies that do a good job of dealing with ambiguous threats apply a rigorous set of detection and response capabilities that they have developed and practiced beforehand. In this article, the authors outline how to put such capabilities in place long before a crisis strikes: first, companies need to hone their teamwork and rapid problem-solving skills. Second, they must encourage teams to recognize and amplify weak threat signals. Finally, they should explore various threat response plans through quick, low-cost experimentation. Ultimately, preparing to face ambiguous threats boils down to building a culture that invites dissent and encourages everyone to question their underlying assumptions.

> Plan continuation bias
We are so close, We may as well keep going… You may be suffering from “Get-there-itis”. // October 2020Medium

Books
> How to stay sane in an age of division, by Elif Shafak (2020)
“Ours is the age of contagious anxiety. We feel overwhelmed by the events around us, by injustice, by suffering, by an endless feeling of crisis. So, how can we nurture the parts of ourselves that hope, trust and believe in something better? And how can we stay sane in this age of division?”

> The Art of Fairnessby David Bodanis (2020)
The power of decency in a world turned mean.

Research
SARS-CoV-2 RBD in vitro evolution follows contagious mutation spread, yet generates an able infection inhibitor // 06.01.2021, bioRXiv

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