The Dyson Electric Car

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Organization: Dyson Ltd – UK Project type : Development of an electric car  Project name : The Dyson Date : Oct 2019 Cost : £500M Synopsis : The future of transportation is here to see and it is of course electric! As a result, the development of electric cars has been a growth area for the past ten years and the pace of change continues to grow. That...
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Great Western Mainline Electrification

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Organization: Network Rail – UK Project type : Rail infrastructure upgrade Project name : Great Western Mainline electrification project Date : Jan 2020 Cost : £2B cost overrun, plus reduced scope Synopsis : The electrification of the world's transportation infrastructure is a growing focus in many countries. Electrification allows the energy intensive i...
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Police Scotland

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Organization: Scottish Police Authority – UK Project type : Policing information management system Project name : i6 Date : Mar 2017 Cost : £200m lost opportunity Synopsis : While I often write about the direct impacts failed projects have on an organization it is also worth remember that each failed project is an investment that failed to yield its inte...
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Iowa Caucus

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Democratic Party of Iowa – USA Project type : Election vote tally system Date : Feb 2020 Cost : A major embarrassment Synopsis : Looking for a way to embarrass yourself on election night - There's an app for that! With the world watching, the first tentative steps towards America's November 2020 Presidential election were taken in the school hall...
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London City – Garden Bridge

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Garden Bridge Trust – UK Project type : Bridge design & construction Date : Apr 2017 Cost : £53M (including £43M of public funds) Synopsis : New York has its 'High Line', Seoul has its 'Sky Garden', Paris has its 'Promenade Plantée' and London nearly had it's 'Garden Bridge'. Elevated, elongated city parks are a draw for both tourists and locals alike...
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Lidl Stiftung & Co. KG

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Organization: Lidl Stiftung & Co. KG - Germany Project name : eLWIS (apparently pronounced “Elvis” in German) Project type : Merchandise management system - Grocery stores Date : Aug 2018 Cost : €500m Synopsis : When it comes to selling the basic commodities of life you have to be lean and efficient. The grocery industry runs on thin margins and reli...
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Boeing 737-MAX

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Organization : Boeing Commercial Airplanes Project name : 737-MAX Project type : Commercial aircraft design Date : Apr 2019 Cost : 346 lives lost Synopsis : Designing and building today's commercial aircraft must be among the most complex projects in the modern age. The two leading players in the industry are America's Boeing Commercial Airplanes a...
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Teddy bear madness

Following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed and troubled projects from around the world. Build-a-Bear Workshop – USA & Canada Project type : Sales promotion Date : Jul 2018 Cost : Undeclared repetitional damage Synopsis : It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of an idea and in doing so miss important issues that lie just below the surface. In a marketing campaign gone awry, US based 'Build-a-Bear Workshop' gained world-wide attentio...
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First time home buyers loan program

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. BC Provincial Government – Canada Project name : British Columbia Home Owner Mortgage and Equity Partnership program Project type : Government backed loan program to help first time buyers enter the real estate market Date : Cancelled Dec 2018 Cost : Unknown Synopsis : Between 2002 and 2017 residential property prices in the city of Vancouver, Canada w...
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A380 – Take two

The following entry is a record in the “Catalogue of Catastrophe” – a list of failed or troubled projects from around the world. Airbus SAS – France Project name : A380 Project type : Commercial aircraft development Date : Feb 2019 Cost : Undeclared, but certainly in the billions of dollars in lost opportunity and other costs. Synopsis : An old Danish proverb (sometimes incorrectly attributed to Yogi Berra) quips that "It is difficult to make predictions, especially about the fu...
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