Connect with Dave Snowden

Dave Snowden

Director, Cynefin Centre
University of Wales TSD


David Snowden is Director of the Cynefin Centre at the University of Wales and founder and chief scientific officer of Cognitive Edge.  His work is in the area of naturalising sense-making, seeking to base social science research and practice in the natural science.  He is generally considered to be a pioneer in the application of complex adaptive systems theory to a range of social issues, and in the development of narrative as a method for research, knowledge discovery and distribution.  His work extends across government and industry in a variety of fields including knowledge management, strategic planning, conflict resolution, weak signal detection, decision support and organisational development.

Snowden holds a variety of academic positions.  In addiiton to the Bangor position is a visiting professor at the University of Stellenbosh and Hull University.  He has previously held positions at the Universities of Canberra, Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Pretoria and is a visiting fellow at Warwick University, Nanyang University, the Universita' Cattolica in Italy and the Singapore Management College.  He was Director of the EPSRC (UK) research programme on emergence in 2006 and was appointed to the NSF (US) review panel on complexity science research in 2007.  He is also on the editorial boards of several Knowledge Management journals and is an Editor in Chief for Emergence, Complexity and Organisation.

He previously worked for IBM where he was a Director of the Institution for Knowledge Management and founded the Cynefin Centre for Organisational Complexity.  He was selected by IBM as one of six “on-demand” thinkers for a world wide advertising campaign.  Prior to that he worked in a range of strategic and management roles in the service sector.  He has extensive international experience and has been engaged in a range of DARAP and other government funded research programmes in the field of counter terrorism.  He lives in the UK where he pursues the co-evolutionary passions of Welsh Rugby and Wagnerian Opera.

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Articles by Dave Snowden

Ten percent of most projects create 90 percent of the grief (change the percentages to suit your own experience), but you can handle that difficult portion using a technique known as social network stimulation. Posted February 02, 2009

In an earlier column, I wrote about the science of complex adaptive systems (see Nov./Dec. 2008 KMWorld), which is a key piece of underlying theory to help us comprehend the increasingly interdependent and co-evolving worlds of knowledge management, social computing and learning... Posted January 02, 2009

Technology developed for one application frequently becomes more useful for something unexpected. It's called a freeloader in evolutionary psychology... Posted September 29, 2008

As promised, I am presenting a step-by-step approach to a low-cost knowledge management (KM) program using social computing, and will focus on the functionality that has been touted but rarely delivered by communities of practice (CoPs). Posted July 11, 2008

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