Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Managing strategic risk systemically - the case of Indonesia, Australia and nuclear power

History is a good starting point for appreciating strategic risk - history of understandings, practices and situation. For example anyone entering the nuclear 'debate' ought first, amongst other things, read Wolves Eat Dogs by Martin Cruz Smith or visit Chernyobyl in person.

Australians who have lived, worked, or visited Indonesia might also do well to reflect on their experiences there in the light of today's announcment of a new 'security pact' to be signed by both countries. This pact was negotiated secretly and has cooperation over nuclear power development as a key component. From my experience 'nuclear' and 'Indonesia' are not two terms I would ever choose to associate!! I have lived in Indonesian and have the greatest respect for Indonesian citizens but, reflecting on the physical geography of the archipeligo and the political and institutional history of the Indonesian nation, I am alarmed. Australia's own record in relation to 'technology push' onto Indonesia is also not good. Nor is the record of mine management in relation to the environment.

It seems the setting for yet more systemic failure is being created!

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