CST has managed to buy 15 copies of “Critical Complexity – Collected essays by Paul Cilliers” (2016) at an author’s discount last year December and it arrived now. They are available at R 860 each (normal price R 1150, excluding import costs and bank fees) and can be bought from Dr Rika Preiser (rika.preiser@spl.sun.ac.za) directly.

This book is a collection of all the single authored essays by Paul Cilliers, published between 1990-2011. Being one of few authors who approached the study of complexity from a philosophical perspective, the main themes in these papers explore:

– Qualitative characterization of complexity and the normative implications of studying complex adaptive systems,
– the philosophical and conceptual similarity to post-structural approaches
– how any engagement with complexity leads to a critical engagement with how we do science and design interventions
– critical and normative implications for how to engage with complex sociopolitical concerns in the world.

What makes this book unique is that it consolidates a body of work that is distributed over a wide range of academic journals.

Although his book “Complexity and Postmodernism” (Routledge, 1998) remains a cornerstone in the field of complexity studies, Cilliers’ journal essays really explore the application of the theoretical concepts in more depth. His ground-breaking ideas conceptualized in these essays have served as a continual source of novelty and inspiration in the process of applying complexity thinking to other fields of study.

Rika Preiser, Centre for Complexity Systems in Transition, Stellenbosch University, South Africa.