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The radical uncertainties of coronavirus

Radical uncertainty arises when we know something, but not enough to enable us to act with confidence. And that is a situation we all too frequently encounter

Transmission electron micrograph of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, isolated from a patient. Photo: Flickr/

When we set out two years ago to write a book on radical uncertainty, and when we delivered it last year and agreed on a publication date of 5th March 2020, we did not know—how could we have known?—that the world would at exactly that time be plunged into radical uncertainty by a radically uncertain event. But as we wrote in that book, “we must expect to be hit by an…

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