Chapter 3

Defining Resilience

Andrew Hale

Tom Heijer

Pictures of Resilience

Resilience first conjures up in the mind pictures of bouncing back from adversity: the boxer dancing courageously out of his corner despite the battering in the previous round; the kidnap victim, like Terry Waite, emerging from months of privation as a prisoner of terrorist organisations, smiling and talking rationally about his experiences; the victim of a severe handicap, like Stephen Hawkins or Christopher Reeve, still managing to make a major contribution to society or a chosen cause. If we were to apply this image to organisations, the emphasis would come to fall on responding to disaster: rapid recovery from a disastrous fire by reopening production in a temporary ...

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