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Intervention by Denise Caruso Read Intervention by Denise Caruso, Executive Director of the Hybrid Vigor Silver Award Winner, 2007 Independent Publisher Book Awards; Best Business Books 2007, Strategy+Business Magazine

archive for October, 2009


by ~ October 14, 2009

In continuation of Elinor Ostrom week on this blog, I thought it appropriate to point everyone to one of her recent collaborations, “Rules, Games, and Common Pool Resources,” a preview of which is freely available on Google books.

In my view, professional security certification programs like CISSP should include this material in their curriculum. The Internet is clearly a Common Pool Resource and understanding behavioral dynamics of such resources is critical to any security regime we try to impose on it.

More of my thoughts on these subjects to come next week. For now, I won’t presume to share the stage!


by ~ October 12, 2009

Elinor Ostrom is the first woman in history to win the Nobel Prize for economics. In my opinion, this is the news of the year. Ostrom’s work strikes at the heart of the human condition, and her conclusions challenge the way we think about governance, trust, and financial systems. She’s also a gifted writer.

The NYT cited Robert Shiller’s comment on the award:

“It is part of the merging of the social sciences,” Robert Shiller, an economist at Yale, said of Monday’s awards. “Economics has been too isolated and these awards today are a sign of the greater enlightenment going around. We were too stuck on efficient markets and it was derailing our thinking” ….

The committee, in effect, said that [current economic] theory was too simplistic and ignored the unstated relationships and behaviors that develop among companies that are competitors but find ways to resolve common problems. “Both scholars have greatly enhanced our understanding of non-market institutions” other than government, the committee said.

“Basically there is a common understanding that develops even among competitors when they are dealing with each other,” Mr. Shiller said, adding “when people make business contact, even competitors, they can’t anticipate everything, so an element of trust comes in” ….

In its announcement, the committee said Ms. Ostrom “has challenged the conventional wisdom that common property is poorly managed and should be either regulated by central authorities or privatized. Based on numerous studies of user-managed fish stocks, pastures, woods, lakes, and groundwater basins, Ostrom concludes that the outcomes are, more often than not, better than predicted by standard theories.”

As some of you may know, Ostrom’s work is the inspiration behind this blog (for example, see my comment at the end of this post) and my work on the Limited Liability Persona at Burton Group (for example, see the references to Ostrom in this report). So I find it remarkable and reassuring that her work is now being recognized on a global scale.

So, once a gain: Congratulations, Elinor!