Small Group Exercise Form small groups of three to four students. Search the Internet on the following topic and debate your findings. The chapter includes a discussion of black swan events that were improbable and unexpected yet had an extreme impact on the well-being of individuals, firms, and nations. Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of The Black Swan, has argued that policy makers and decision makers need to focus on building more robust organizations or systems rather than on improving predictions of events. This notion is reflected in the response to the predicted increase in powerful storms and storm surges. Hurricanes Katrina (which devastated New Orleans and parts of the Gulf Coast) and Sandy (which wreaked havoc on the New Jersey coast) have stimulated discussions about how to not only build a more resilient infrastructure and buildings, but also develop more flexible and effective responses. Each group should search the Internet about options and plans to (1) build more sustainable communities that will help threatened areas cope with superstorms, storm surges, or drought conditions, and (2) organize responses to black swan events (including natural disasters or terrorist attacks) more effectively. Brainstorm additional recommendations that you might make to policy makers.
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