Thinking Complexity

Chapters 1 › Unit 1: Chart how a key variable has changed over time View instructions Hide instructions

Chart how a key variable has changed over time

This exercise will help you practice identifying a complex situation from news items. it involves drawing how something has changed over time.

The following online news story describes a recent road security campaign on the Mediterranean island of Malta. Your task is to identify the key variable and draw how it has changed over a relevant time period.

Hint: you can follow the steps in the document entitled "Spotting complexity in the news" in the additional materials.

A possible solution is available for download in the references section.

Exercise 1: Chart how a key variable has changed over time

1 comment

The key variable is road fatalities. This is a complex situation, acording to Spotting complexity in the news, because the problem is chronic and recurring. There is no much information about the variation of road fatalities. We are just told that Malta registered a 27% decrease in road fatalities over the past five years. We are not given more statistics to compare to, but I could say that the classic shape could be the one that indicates something is falling or decaying.


over 2 years ago

Although the exercise is about the key variable, I want to mention a second variable: education campaigns. According to the article "Minister Abela spoke about education campaigns for children and adults in order to continue reducing the number of road accidents." It's not clear when these campaigns started or if it is a plan for the near future. Readers do not get information about the reasons for the decrease in road fatalities.

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