Rolling with the times

by Carl Dyke

“The essential requirement is to recognize that conditions are needed that occasionally foster novelty and experiment. Those become possible during periods when connectedness is low and resilience is high. The low connectedness permits novel reassortments of elements that previously were tightly connected to one another. The high resilience allows tests of those novel combinations because system-wide costs of failure are low. Those are the conditions needed for creative experimentation. This recognition of resilience varying within a cycle is the first element added that provides a way to reconcile the delicious paradoxes of conservative nature versus creative nature, of sustainability versus creative change.”

Holling, C.S. and Lance H. Gunderson, “Resilience and Adaptive Cycles,” in Gunderson and Holling, eds. Panarchy: Understanding Transformations in Human and Natural Systems. Island, 2002. Accessed at


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