When there are statements like this, in the absence of a domain and a context of a domain, it just reinforces why I don't recommend you read any *populist* books on a topic if you have any skills at all of getting to the first level of actual technical context for that topic.

So let's start here with a survey of the topic from the non-populist point of view - that is actionable. That is from the point of view of people who want to calculate something, make a decision on the outcomes from that analysis.

Nothing wrong what so ever with those populist approaches. But one test that has served me well over the decades is *can I calculate something with this person's product (book, paper, or article)*?

No? Then I may not be able to calculate something directly from the author's work, but I'd better be able to find out how to do it in an appendix or a reference.

Still a No? Then is there something there that will lead me to the next level of understanding where I can start to see how I can calculate something. Here's the recent example about *Moving Beyond Populist Books*.

What's this means is that while the *populist* books may be informative to many - and we need a lot more informed people than we have now - these *populist* books and materials quickly run out of steam when we want to actually make a decision that involves money, time, resources, risk, commitment of someone else's stuff. In other words we need to know quantitatively and analytically what the probability of success will be if we follow that authors advise.These *populist *books play a role of starting the conversation, but fail to complete the conversation - in many cases - with *actionable outcomes*. They point out the problem but not the actions need to create the solution. Knowing the problem is necessary but not sufficient.

I can hear the populist authors squawking now.

What! How dare you critize my popularizaiton of this critically important topic with your lame need to actually apply this idea in a quantifiable manner.

But their role is to *popularize* a topic, not necessary do the *calculations* needed to solve problems with the *popularization*.

So if you look at the *reading list* of the paper above, you'll see books, papers, articles that * DO* provide actionable outcomes. Once you've digested the

*populist*ideas, take a tour of those to see if there is anything there you can put to work on your own

*complexity management*problem.

Don't get me wrong. *Populist* books are fine. But they are just that *populist* not the *engineering* books I need to work the problems in front of me.

For some more background on complex systems in the world I work see:

- NDIA Human Systems
- Verification and Validation in Complex Adaptive Systems
- Cybe Space: The Ultimate Adaptive System and the Operationalizing Agility
- The Agility Advantage: A Survivall Guide for Complex Enterprises and Endeavors. This eBook will freak out the agilest who don't understand the notion of
*Command and Control*is mission critical paradigms, where agility must operate in the presence of 100% Mission Success.