Ottawa's Festival of Ideas Since 1997
Christ Church Cathedral414 Sparks St.
1:30pm

How Big Things Get Done

with Dan Gardner
Hosted by CBC’s Kate Porter

How Big Things Get Done

with Dan Gardner
Hosted by CBC’s Kate Porter
6
Saturday
May
2023
1:30pm
Christ Church Cathedral
414 Sparks St.
Dan Gardner

CBC’s Kate Porter in conversation with New York Times best-seller Dan Gardner, co-author of How Big Things Get Done: The Surprising Factors That Determine the Fate of Every Project, from Home Renovations to Space Exploration and Everything In Between.

 

Nothing is more inspiring than a big vision that becomes a triumphant, new reality. Think of how the Empire State Building went from a sketch to the jewel of New York's skyline in twenty-one months, or how Apple’s iPod went from a project with a single employee to a product launch in eleven months.

 

These are wonderful stories. But most of the time big visions turn into nightmares. Remember Boston’s “Big Dig”? Almost every sizeable city in the world has such a fiasco in its backyard. In fact, no less than 92% of megaprojects come in over budget or over schedule, or both. The cost of California’s high-speed rail project soared from $33 billion to $100 billon—and won’t even go where promised. More modest endeavors, whether launching a small business, organizing a conference, or just finishing a work project on time, also commonly fail. Why?

 

Understanding what distinguishes the triumphs from the failures has been the life’s work of Oxford professor Bent Flyvbjerg, dubbed “the world’s leading megaproject expert.” In How Big Things Get Done, he identifies the errors in judgment and decision-making that lead projects, both big and small, to fail, and the research-based principles that will make you succeed with yours. 

 

Full of vivid examples ranging from the building of the Sydney Opera House, to the making of the latest Pixar blockbusters, to a home renovation in Brooklyn gone awry,  How Big Things Get Done  reveals how to get any ambitious project done—on time and on budget.

 

PLEASE NOTE: For the safety and comfort of all patrons, masks are strongly encouraged for those attending in person this Spring. Livestream tickets are available upon request for those who prefer to attend remotely.

 

Books are available from our friends at Perfect Books.

 

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See Also

Included in Optional Saturday May 06 Saturday Pass

12:00pm • Christ Church Cathedral • 414 Sparks St.
1:30pm • Christ Church Cathedral • 414 Sparks St.
3:00pm • Christ Church Cathedral • 414 Sparks St.
4:30pm • Christ Church Cathedral • 414 Sparks St.
6:00pm • Christ Church Cathedral • 414 Sparks St.
7:30pm • Christ Church Cathedral • 414 Sparks St.
9:00pm • Christ Church Cathedral • 414 Sparks St.
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