execution & performance | August 13, 2019

Why Do Complex Systems Fail? Meltdown by Chris Clearfield and András Tilcsik Wins Management Award

The George R. Terry Book Award is granted annually by the Academy of Management, honoring those who have made an outstanding contribution to management knowledge on a global scale. This year, two Lavin speakers—Chris Clearfield and András Tilcsik—have been honored for their book Meltdown

Meltdown: Why Our Systems Fail and What We Can Do About it examines how seemingly unrelated disasters—ranging from medical emergencies to transportation errors to nuclear catastrophe—can share common causes. The book was co-authored by Chris Clearfield, the founder of System Logic consulting firm, and András Tilcsik, a professor at the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management. Together, Clearfield and Tilcsik combine real-life stories with innovative social science research, painting an intriguing picture of the systems in our world today—and why they fail. As the central thesis of the book explains, it is the increasing complexity of these systems that contribute to their breakdown. Beyond addressing the problem, Meltdown offers practical solutions to prevent disasters before they strike.


Meltdown recently won the National Book Award, and Clearfield and Andras are currently shortlisted for Thinkers50 awards (dubbed the “Oscars of Management Thinking” by the Financial Times).


To book speakers Chris Clearfield and Andras Tilcsik for your next speaking engagement, contact The Lavin Agency, their exclusive speakers bureau.