Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS: https://ethos.bl.uk/OrderDetails.do?uin=uk.bl.ethos.805986
Title: A conceptual framework for countering emergent systemic novelty in the critical national infrastructure
Author: Sheader, Christopher
Awarding Body: University of Derby
Current Institution: University of Derby
Date of Award: 2020
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Abstract:
The Defence and Security sector within Her Majesty’s Government (and beyond) undertakes significant development programmes that augment the Critical National Infrastructure. The Critical National Infrastructure is a collective term for those facilities, systems, sites, information, people, networks and processes, necessary for a country to function and upon which daily life depends (CPNI, 2019). Significant programme issues have been observed repeatedly within the study context – perhaps not surprising given the complex adaptive system in which it exists. Upon being commissioned by the organisation to explore and develop an intervention to reduce failures/enhance programme success, the notion of novelty emerged. It is this novelty across systems in the study context that is explored in this thesis taking the form of a Participatory Action Research Project, this thesis reviews the key literature and develops a multi-disciplinary Conceptual Framework—Countering Systemic Novelty (CSN). CSN incorporates across four theoretical areas: (1) The nature of Complex Adaptive Systems; (2) the notion of Novelty as an emergent phenomenon; (3) Understanding the Context, (4) and the level of System Response. The thesis then explores whether CSN can augment the overall capability of the system to respond to the emergence of Novelty and propose a mechanism for the delivery of the intervention into this system. The investigation is guided theoretically by both holism and pragmatism; it sits within a philosophy that sees actors as being part of the system and is takes a constructivist perspective to the research. Both the encompassing philosophy and the research are supported by the key principles of coevolution’ and ‘Requisite Variety’ that run throughout the evolution of this Practitioner Project. The research is based on a multi-round study, using the Delphi Technique, which examined the ‘Validity and Applicability’ of CSN with a senior expert panel drawn from the operational context, specifically programme and risk management. The results of the study were assessed using two ‘Thesis indicators’ and found the expert panel agreed that CSN was both valid and applicable. For Validity TI-1 Agreement Tendency achieved 91% and TI-2 Degree of Consensus achieved 86%. For Applicability, TI-1 Agreement Tendency achieved 92% and TI- 2 Degree of Consensus achieved 79%. The study confirms that CSN is a valid and applicable approach to help counter emergent Novelty in the defence and security sector and, as a result, system capability would improve following its adoption. It also confirms that CSN can be used to inform differing interventions, including discrete development programmes; as additions to existing programmes or as targeted intervention in the event of emergent threat.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID: uk.bl.ethos.805986  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Defence & Security ; Participatory Action Research ; Delphi Technique ; Complex Adaptive Systems ; Sense-making ; Risk Management ; Soft Systems Methodology ; System Dynamics ; Pragmatism
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