Health Care, Management, and Complexity LO22558 -Conf

Michael Lissack (
Thu, 02 Sep 1999 20:34:13 -0400

Mastering Complexity In Health Care
-- Doing It Not Just Talking About It --

October 27-31, 1999 at the Sheraton Four Points, Norwood
(Boston), Massachusetts

"Managing the Complex" will be a unique event -- 3 days of discussions and
problem solving focused on the relationships between managing
organizationsinvolved with health care and the science of complex systems.
Our aim is to be learning together with a focus on solving problems not
merely intellectual chat.

We will focus on the problems of five health care related organizations,
including one focusing on cancer care, another on preventitive approaches
to heart problems, and another on "near misses" and their lack of
reporting. Each organization will send four people and a problem to be

In addition we will have presentations from several invited speakers,
including a panel on the successes of complexity approaches to problems in
manufacturing and another on philosophical issues.

The bulk of our time will be spent in discussion sessions in working
groups focusing on one of the organizational problems. Using the lessons
from the speakers and the interactions with each other the groups will
strive to solve their designated problem. This focus on interaction around
solving problems is a direct result of the learning experience of our last
three conferences.

The breakout groups will meet for 2 hours after hearing each invited
speaker. The groups will each have an assigned facilitator to help focus
the discussion on what was just heard and how this perspective might help
in dealing with the problem at hand. At the end of the conference, each
of the groups will report outcomes, so that the participants can learn
from one another.

While our focus will be on health care, "Managing the Complex" will
attract managers, academics, consultants, and others interested in the
possibility of applying the insights of the science of complex systems to
day-to-day management problems. At our last three meetings the discussion
was both deep and broad. Attendance will be limited to 100 in order to
keep the size of groups at the level optimal for discussion.

We still have room for participants and focus organizations.

See the web site at

Notes of our March 1999 meeting are available at

Notes of our October 1998 meeting are available at

Michael Lissack <>
Editor-in-Chief, Emergence: A Journal of Complexity Issues 
In Organizations and Management
Director, the Networking, Emergence and Complexity Studies
32 Garrison Street, Apartment #50-104, Boston MA 02116,,
phone 617-536-4109 fax -- 617-249-0663

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