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Breaking the Trend: the Future of the Scarred Generation

In my last post, I talked about the “Scarred Generation” – the younger generation that should be approaching its peak earnings at about the same time that the Post-World War II Baby Boomers reach their population …

Trends: The Scarred Generation

In my last post, I started outlining some of the trends that will drive change over the next decade (at least).  I started with the amazing advances in health care that will extend our lifespans.  Before …

Vectoring Community Resilience – Take a Centenarian to Lunch!

One of the keys to becoming more resilient is to anticipate change.  That we live in a kaleidoscopically changing world is obvious; the trick is to recognize the forces driving change and the directions they might …

The Lone Wolf – Understanding the Threat

An important part of resilience is recognizing the risks we face, and then taking action.  Those actions can take a variety of forms – we may try to wall ourselves away from danger, we may prepare …

Ferguson and resilience

Two weeks ago, I started to write a post about Thanksgiving.  “Thanksgiving is the holiday we celebrate our resilience – challenges met, adversities overcome – together with family and friends…”   I went on to write about …

Form Follows Function, Except …

“Whether it be the sweeping eagle in his flight, or the open apple-blossom, the toiling work-horse, the blithe swan, the branching oak, the winding stream at its base, the drifting clouds, over all the coursing sun, …

Resilience – What Is It, Anyway?

One of the blessings – and curses – of working in resilience is that you have to attend a lot of meetings – a LOT of meetings.  Too often, you’ll think you’re making real progress on …

The Law of Conservation of Community Momentum

”Disasters accelerate existing trends.” – Mayor Joe Riley (Charleston, SC) ”Every body persists in its state of being at rest or of moving uniformly straight forward, except insofar as it is compelled to change its state …

Celebration and the Craft of Community Resilience

Whenever I give a presentation on resilience, I try to include the following cartoon. Too often as we contemplate the pain and suffering of disaster, we forget that we rebuild our lives by laying one brick …

Guest Post: Credit Score Model for Measuring Community Resilience by Brian Dabson

Continuing with the recent theme of measuring resilience, Brian Dabson of the University of Missouri’s Institute of Public Policy asks  – can the model we use for credit scoring be applied to community resilience.  A provocative …

Measuring resilience: the Tao of CARRI

As long-time readers of the blog may remember, I often try to apply the teachings of Sun Tzu in the Art of War to everyday life.  One of the important elements in this Taoist philosophy of …

A community is like a comfortable old car…

I finished with my meetings a little earlier than expected one day last week, and stopped in at my friend Dooley’s pub.  Miss Edna, Dooley’s cook and long-time FWB, cooks the best hamburger east of the …

Measuring resilience – not for wimps!

The impossible we do immediately; miracles take a little longer. There are several efforts currently underway aimed at “measuring” community resilience.  Too often, projects like these have started with great gusto – sails full and flags …

Resilience and Intolerance

Everyone sits in the prison of his own ideas; he must burst it open, and that in his youth,and so try to test his ideas on reality. – Albert Einstein That wonderful time of year when …

Of Ice Storms, Interdependencies, and Their Impacts on Running a Bar

One of the reasons I’m so proud of the work we’re doing at CARRI is that we are firmly rooted in the real world.  Focusing on the “Whole Community” will do that to you!  We have …

Investing wisely in community resilience

To invest: To devote time, energy, effort or money to a particular undertaking with the expectation of a positive result. We all know there’s no free lunch; we have to invest in our communities if they …

Resilience: the Game Changer

There is a stream of liberal western thought that is turning modern life into a game of “Nobody Can Lose.” The rules of this game dictate that no matter what happens no one has to suffer …

Poor communication – catapulting into crisis

“What we have here is a failure to communicate.” – Cool Hand Luke In my last post, I mentioned the chemical leak that left 300,000 without water in West Virginia and the massive traffic mess caused …

Recognizing Resilient Communities

This month, we’ve seen two regional disasters – the leak from Freedom Industries in West Virginia, and the snow-induced traffic tragedies around Atlanta.  In both cases, the media and those involved are still playing the Blame …

Three [More] Things I Think I Think About Resilience

(with my continuing apologies to and appreciation of the MMQB) I think I think 3-D and 4-D printing are going to have a transformative impact on our economy and its resilience.  I have long touted the …

Catalysts for Community Resilience – Institutions of Higher Education

We all want our communities to be more resilient – better able to respond to and recover from crises.  But that means “change,” and change requires investment – new money, new people, and new ideas.  In …

Homeowners and Social Media – Residential Demographics and Resilience-II

Residential Demographics and Resilience-II:  Homeowners and Social Media “At its most basic, community resilience is about people.”  I started my last post that way, but it wasn’t quite accurate.  Community resilience is about people, but people …

Residential Demographics and Resilience-I: Who Owns Homes

At its most basic, community resilience is about people.  Those of us who are focused on enhancing community resilience often make the mistake of thinking that one size fits all, whether it’s the messages we craft …

Fuzzy Math: A New Way to Look at Community Resilience

Hi.  I’m John, and I’m a math nerd.  I was good in math at school.  In fact, I earned pin money in college tutoring students in math courses even if I hadn’t taken them. Then, in …

Mitigation 360º – FLASH 2013 Annual Conference

Last week, I got a refresher course in enthusiasm by attending FLASH’s 2013 Annual Conference.  This day-and-a-half event is always a highlight of my late fall.  Leslie Chapman-Henderson, Tim Smail and the rest of their crew …

Dillon’s Rule and Community Resilience

A guest blog by Dr. Andy Felts, College of Charleston When the Framers of the Constitution met in Philadelphia in 1788, ostensibly to amend the Articles of Confederation, they had three basic designs to choose from. …

The Death of Detroit – How Do the Fragile Pull Back from the Brink?

In the previous post in this series, I spotlighted three communities that I believe are particularly fragile – Cape Coral, FL; Flint, MI; and Gary, IN.  While each of these has its own characteristics and set …

The Death of Detroit – Who’s Next?

As I promised in a previous post, I’m going to go out on a limb (as you’ll see, not too far out) and predict who might be next.  I’ll start by recapping a bit, and discuss …

The Death of Growth, or, How I learned to Stop Worrying and Love the S-Curve

Robert Gordon, an eminent economist (Did God really create economists to make palm readers look good?) at Northwestern University, has become famous for his bleak projections of our economic future (e.g., he has a highly viewed …

The Death of Detroit – What is a Resilient Community?

“Disasters accelerate existing trends.” — Joe Riley, Mayor, Charleston, SC “It’s hard to make predictions, especially about the future.” — Yogi Berra After my last post, I’m sure many of you have wanted to tell me …

Research Needed for the New Resilience

CARRI’s view of community resilience encompasses resistance, response and recovery.  As Claire Rubin and others have said, we simply don’t know enough about recovery and until we do, that lack of knowledge will hinder our attempts …

Resilience – Can’t We Try Something Different?

I just heard an interesting talk by Dr. Irwin Redlener of Columbia at the Hazards Conference here in Colorado. At the conclusion, he proposed that we needed more federal government coordination of resources for family and …

The New Resilience and Purpose-Driven Businesses

In several recent posts, I’ve written about a re-imagining of the American Dream for our new century. In this post, I begin a look at how we can achieve greater economic resilience. Recently I read Conscious …

Build It Better Leadership Forum

Thursday and Friday I had the pleasure to attend the Build It Better Leadership Forum in Charlotte. Renaissance Reinsurance, the Federal Alliance for Safe Homes, and their partners put on a superlative event bringing together nearly …