YPFP operates several focused series designed to provide a platform for more nuanced discussion of key foreign policy issues. Read More
YPFP DC: The "Black Swan Phenomena" in International Relations, a Conversation with John Rendon, Rendon Group Inc.
Mr. Rendon’s talk will focus on Nassim Taleb’s Black Swan theory and
it’s application in international affairs. Instead of trying to
epistemologically define ongoing global events, Mr. Rendon postulates
that perhaps all of the ongoing events are Black Swans, and therefore
will yield their own surprises and create an environment where
uncertainty is the norm. The region where this uncertainty is stemming
from is the Arab world, which is still undergoing the Arab Spring. Mr.
Rendon explains that the phenomena of the Black Swans has surged past
the Arabic-speaking world and into other regions, transforming what
once was the Arab Spring into the Great Wave. Mr. Rendon will discuss
the Great Wave’s creation of an uncertain global environment and will
note key communication strategies and technologies that are being
implemented. He identifies the Street as a force that is propelling
the Great Wave through the savvy use of these technologies and
strategies while the Elite is trying to resist the Great Wave.
John W. Rendon, Jr., is CEO and President of The Rendon Group, Inc.
(TRG) a global strategic communications consultancy based in
Washington DC. To date, TRG has worked in 97 countries.
John Rendon is considered to be one of the world’s leading pioneers in
the use of strategic communications as an element of national power
and one of the first thought--‐leaders to harness the power of
emerging technologies in support of real time information management.
He has served as an executive communications consultant to the White
House, U.S. Department of Defense, the National security community and
to the leadership of Fortune 500 companies. He is a participant in
forward--‐thinking organizations such as the Highlands Forum and the
Aspen Institute, and is a lecturer and speaker at many forums and
universities on the impact of emerging information technologies on the
way populations think and behave.
In the National Security arena, Mr. Rendon has participated in the
design and implementation of strategic communications initiatives and
information programs related to operations Iraqi Freedom, Enduring
Freedom (Afghanistan), Allied Force (Kosovo), Desert Shield and Desert
Storm (Kuwait), and Just Cause (Panama), among others. TRG also
participates in counter narcotics programs and has worked in Haiti,
Bosnia, and Serbia among other austere environments.
Mr. Rendon has developed comprehensive crisis and non--‐crisis
information operations for political and public policy campaigns in
the Americas, Europe, Asia, the Caribbean, Africa, and the Middle
Mr. Rendon is a lecturer on topics including strategic communications
development and implementation, information operations, information
strategies, tactics and operations; crisis management and the American
Presidency. He regularly lectures at the Defense Universities. He has
lectured at such prestigious institutions as the American University,
Boston University, Catholic University, Center for Strategic and
International Studies, Federal Executive Training Institute, George C.
Marshall Center, George Mason University, Georgetown University,
George Washington University, Harvard University, Naval War College,
National Defense University, Northeastern University, University of
Southern California, among others.
Mr. Rendon has also served as an analyst for CBS News and has appeared
as an analyst on BBC World Service television, BBC World Service
radio, SKY Television and CNN, among others.