Rosmarin Program Services

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Degeneracy

“This organisation isn’t degenerate enough” probably isn’t how you’d phrase it, but Degeneracy is certainly a word that makes you pause when you hear it at work. 

Moral degeneracy aside, the word has another life in science where it means “equivalent state” or “same function, different form”. Degeneracy is one way of increasing an organisation’s resilience (a previous word of the day). 

It’s key to note that degenerate units are NOT identical. In some contexts, they may be functionally similar but in other contexts they will be functionally dissimilar. This has benefits, for example there is a degree of redundancy – if one functional unit fails you still have some capacity. Additionally, having some differences between your degenerate units means that  each will have different strengths and weaknesses. This increases your ability to adapt to different demands without going through a change process. 

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