Complex Questions

“The significant problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thinking with which we created them.”

Complex questions surround all of the most important issues facing the world's decision makers. These questions are resistant to every attempt at resolution. Finding the right answers to these complex questions is essential to improving the security, prosperity and equity of our world.

Complex questions are startlingly difficult to answer because they are characterized by:

  • Ambitious, multiple and often competing objectives
  • High numbers of heterogeneous subordinate elements
  • Resource and time constraints that severely limit the range of solutions
  • Opacity, except to the most experienced and knowledgeable
  • Unpredictability due to inherent unknowability and social factors

Complex questions are challenges to both conception and resolution. Indeed, asking exactly the right question is the first hurdle in addressing any complex problem. Even if the question is well-conceived, an actionable resolution is often elusive.

At Group W, we believe that complex questions are best addressed by:

  • Visionary clients who demand constructive engagement
  • Exceptional people who are both highly skilled and passionately dedicated to the search for answers
  • A fusion of science and art that combines practical, critical thinking with an imaginative synthesis of the most appropriate methods
  • An unconventional culture that regards the right answer as its most important goal

Visionary Clients

Visionary Clients visionary-clients

“Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.”

Peter Drucker

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Unconventional Culture

Unconventional Culture unconventional-culture

“A culture is made - or destroyed - by its articulate voices.”

Ayn Rand

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Exceptional People

Exceptional People exceptional-people

“Ten persons who speak make more noise than ten thousand who are silent.”

Napoléon Bonaparte

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Science and Art

Science and Art science-and-art

“Science is knowledge which we understand so well that we can teach it to a computer; and if we don't fully understand something, it is an art to deal with it.”

Donald Knuth

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The Right Answer

“Every great advance in science has issued from a new audacity of imagination.”

Group W's clients are tackling some of the world's most complex questions. Our passion is finding the right answers to these questions.

The right answer is often surprising and always:

  • Analytically sound—it is not a pre-ordained conclusion or the product of a rote process
  • Defensible—it is able to withstand intense and informed scrutiny
  • Actionable—it leads to practical decisions consistent with resource, schedule and cultural constraints

Finding the right answer to genuinely complex questions requires vigorous debate, relentless effort and unconstrained thinking.

Decades of experience have taught us that four components are necessary for an environment where these practices can flourish:

  • Visionary clients who get things done, push the boundaries of their fields, and have the courage and conviction to defy conventional wisdom
  • Exceptional people who are driven by the challenges of complex questions and refuse to accept answers that are "good enough"
  • A unique combination of the rigor of science and the creativity of art
  • An unconventional culture that values meritocratic, evidence-based discourse as its highest ideal

About Group W

About Group W about-group-w

“It is difficult to say what is impossible, for the dream of yesterday is the hope of today and the reality of tomorrow.”

Robert Goddard

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Contact Us

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“Wanting contact

I'm wanting contact

I'm wanting contact with you”

Peter Gabriel

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Complex Questions

Complex questions surround all of the most important issues facing the world's decision makers. Finding the right answers to these complex questions is essential to improving the security, prosperity and equity of our world.

Learn More

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The Right Answer

Group W's clients are tackling some of the world's most complex questions. Our passion is finding the right answers to these questions.

Learn More