Around 1990, US military strategists created a four-letter word to describe the global situation at that time. That word is VUCA, which comes from the words volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity.
It’s been over 100 years and we are still living in a VUCA world. There are unexpected successes, such as Uber, Amazon and YouTube, as well as complex failures, such as Mexicana de Aviación, Enron and Lehman Brothers. To make matters worse, natural and human systems continue to test institutions that seemed solid; let’s think of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, Hurricane Katrina or the Arab Spring.