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Modularity & Scale In Big Cleantech Projects: Insights From Bent Flyvbjerg’s “How Big Things Get Done”

Projects have what are called fat-tail risks and results. There’s a lot more variation at the extremes than for other things like human height.

How Big Things Get Done is a book co-authored by Bent Flyvbjerg and Dan Gardner that will be published early in February. The book explores the methods and strategies used to successfully plan, execute, and deliver large, complex projects such as infrastructure and transportation. It provides insights on how to overcome the common challenges and pitfalls that can occur in these types of projects.

The book is based on extensive research and data analysis, and includes examples and case studies to illustrate the key concepts and strategies discussed. The authors also present a set of heuristics, or rules of thumb, that can be used to simplify and improve decision-making in large projects. The book is aimed at project managers, executives, and anyone interested in the planning and delivery of large-scale projects.

How Big Things Get Done by Bent Flyvbjerg and Dan Gardner

How Big Things Get Done by Bent Flyvbjerg and Dan Gardner

I’ve just finished a pre-release copy of the book in preparation for recording a CleanTech Talk podcast with Flyvbjerg, and I can say as someone who worked on billion dollar technology projects, consults to institutional investors, and cares deeply about solving the climate crisis, this is a must-read book. I wish I’d had it in the late 1990s when I was delivering 32,000 devices to 1,400 physical locations in 10 months after 2.5 years of careful planning and testing. It would have made some of the arguments a lot easier. And I wish I’d had it to slap on people’s desks around the world when dealing with major IT and business transformations.

Subscribers can read the full article here: Modularity & Scale In Big Cleantech Projects: Insights From Bent Flyvbjerg’s “How Big Things Get Done”

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Written By

is a member of the Advisory Board of ELECTRON Aviation an electric aviation startup, Chief Strategist at TFIE Strategy and co-founder of distnc technologies. He spends his time projecting scenarios for decarbonization 40-80 years into the future, and assisting executives, Boards and investors to pick wisely today. Whether it's refueling aviation, grid storage, vehicle-to-grid, or hydrogen demand, his work is based on fundamentals of physics, economics and human nature, and informed by the decarbonization requirements and innovations of multiple domains. His leadership positions in North America, Asia and Latin America enhanced his global point of view. He publishes regularly in multiple outlets on innovation, business, technology and policy. He is available for Board, strategy advisor and speaking engagements.


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