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Richard de Neufville

Richard de Neufville is Professor of Engineering Systems and Civil and Environmental Engineering at MIT. He was Founding Chairman of the MIT Technology and Policy Program.

Titles by This Author

Project teams can improve results by recognizing that the future is inevitably uncertain and that by creating flexible designs they can adapt to eventualities. This approach enables them to take advantage of new opportunities and avoid harmful losses. Designers of complex, long-lasting projects—such as communication networks, power plants, or hospitals—must learn to abandon fixed specifications and narrow forecasts. They need to avoid the “flaw of averages,” the conceptual pitfall that traps so many designs in underperformance.