Seminar: Patricia Longstaff, 'Risk and Resilience in Society' (Hosted by Smith School)

Past Event

01 March 2011, 5:00pm - 6:00pm

Smith School of Enterprise and the Enviroment
OUCE, South Parks Road, Oxford, OX1 3QY

Professor Patricia Longstaff - James Martin Senior Visiting Fellow.

Please note this event is hosted by the Smith School.

Many observers have noted that we are entering a time of higher uncertainty, with fast and strong disruptions in many systems. This has been called the New Normal. This is affecting technical systems, biological systems, economic systems, and human organizations. This has increased interest in resilience, a strategy that is often seen in systems that must operate under high uncertainty – systems in which it is not possible to predict or resist disruption.

Longstaff will discuss some of the attributes of resilience that are seen in many systems and how resilience can fail. These attributes and processes were first noted in ecological systems and are now being more widely studied. She will also present her Toolkit for increasing resilience. She has presented these ideas to military, business, NGO, and government organizations.

Professor Longstaff is a James Martin Senior Visiting Fellow. She is the David Levidow Professor of Communication Law and Policy at Syracuse University and specializes in the business and public policy issues affecting the communications industry in the United States and internationally. She is also a Research Associate at Harvard University's Center for Information Policy Research. Her most recent work there involves the role of communications in the resilience of local populations who suffer a "surprise" such as a terrorist attack or natural disaster. She is also a member of the US State Department Advisory Committee on International Communications Policy, and a member of the Board of Directors of the International Telecommunications Society.

In addition to a law degree and a master's degree in mass communication form the University of Iowa, she received a Master of Public Administration degree from Harvard in 1994. She practiced communication and corporate law for 18 years, representing newspapers, broadcasters, advertising agencies, and telephone companies.