Social Judgement Theory (SJT) evolved from Egon Brunswik's Probabilistic Functionalist psychology coupled with multiple correlation and regression-based statistical analysis. Through its representational device, the Lens Model, SJT has become a widely used, systems-oriented perspective for analysing human judgement in specific ecological circumstances. Judgements are assumed to result from the integration of different cues or sources of perceptual information from the environment. Special advantages accrue to the SJT approach when criterion values (or correct values) for judgement are also available, as (...) this permits the comparison of judgement processes to environmental processes and leads naturally to the generation of cognitive feedback as an aid to facilitate learning. In contrast to more prescriptive approaches to decision analysis, the SJT approach analyses judgements by decomposing the judgement process after judgements have been rendered. This a posteriori decomposition is accomplished by first using multiple regression analysis to recover prediction equations for both the judgement and ecological systems and then using the Lens Model Equation to compare those systems. SJT methods maintain close contact with ecological circumstances by employing the principle of representative design (which focuses on how the researcher obtains the stimuli for judgement) and avoiding unwarranted over-generalisations from nomothetic aggregation (e.g. averaging across judges) through the use of idiographic statistical analysis. SJT methods have proven valuable in the analysis of individual judgements as well as groupbased judgements where conflict becomes likely. (shrink)
The main thesis of the paper is that in the case of modern statistics, the differences between the various concepts of models were the key to its formative controversies. The mathematical theory of statistical inference was mainly developed by Ronald A. Fisher, Jerzy Neyman, and Egon S. Pearson. Fisher on the one side and Neyman–Pearson on the other were involved often in a polemic controversy. The common view is that Neyman and Pearson made Fisher's account more stringent mathematically. It (...) is argued, however, that there is a profound theoretical basis for the controversy: both sides held conflicting views about the role of mathematical modelling. At the end, the influential programme of Exploratory Data Analysis is considered to be advocating another, more instrumental conception of models. Introduction Models in statistics—‘of what population is this a random sample?’ The fundamental lemma Controversy about models Exploratory data analysis as a model-critical approach. (shrink)
This paper first explores a number of themes in the psychological system developed by the Austrian-American psychologist, Egon Brunswik, focusing on those that had a formative influence on Social Judgement Theory. We show that while perception was a recurring ground for Brunswik's empirical and theoretical work, his psychology was a psychology of cognition in the broadest sense. Next, two major themes in Social Judgement Theory functionalism and probabilism are described, and the elegant formulation known as Brunswik's Lens Model is (...) introduced. Some methodological and theoretical implications of these themes are presented. The paper concludes with Hammond's Cognitive Continuum Theory (CCT), which is a theory describing modes of cognition and how those modes are influenced by task characteristics. (shrink)
This article examines constructivism, a paradigm in qualitative research that has been propagated by Egon Guba, Yvonna Lincoln, and Norman Denzin. A distinction is made between whether the basic presuppositions of constructivism are credible compared to those of a competing paradigm and whether constructivism's beliefs are internally consistent. The latter approach, i.e. whether constructivism is internally consistent, is the focus of this article. The issues singled out for discussion are concerned with the constructivist ontology and epistemology. This article shows (...) that constructivism's paradigmatic beliefs are internally in tension. (shrink)
A Krom formula of pure quantification theory is a formula in conjunctive normal form such that each conjunct is a disjunction of at most two atomic formulas or negations of atomic formulas. Every class of Krom formulas that is determined by the form of their quantifier prefixes and which is known to have an unsolvable decision problem for satisfiability is here shown to be a conservative reduction class. Therefore both the general satisfiability problem, and the problem of satisfiability in finite (...) models, can be effectively reduced from arbitrary formulas to Krom formulas of these several prefix types. (shrink)
The relationship between agriculture and nature is a central issue in the current agricultural debate. Organic Farming has ambitions and a special potential in relation to nature. Consideration for nature is part of the guiding principals of organic farming and many organic farmers are committed to protecting natural qualities. However, the issue of nature, landscape, and land use is not straightforward. Nature is an ambiguous concept that involves multiple interests and actors reaching far beyond farmers. The Danish research project Nature (...) Quality in Organic Farming has investigated the relationship between nature and organic farming. This article will focus on an expert workshop held in connection with the project that investigates the way different actors conceptualize nature. Farmers, scientists, and non-governmental organizations came together to discuss their experiences of nature and expectations of organic agriculture. From this interaction, it was clear that nature is a contested notion. Different understandings of nature exist within the three groups and there is disagreement as to whether emphasis should be given to biological qualities, production values, or experiential and aesthetic perspectives. This complexity provides a challenge to organic farming as well as to the implementation of nature considerations in general. It illustrates an underlying battle for the right to define nature and nature quality and essentially decide what organic farmers should work towards. We argue that successful implementation requires organic farmers to carefully consider what expectations they wish to meet. Optimally it is dependent on a dialog between stakeholder interest groups that allows for multivocality and pluralism. (shrink)
This article raises the question of whether standard economics with the general equilibrium model at its core applies situational analysis in a Popperian sense. Contrary to Popper's own view, the authors come to the conclusion that this is not the case. Standard economics fails to represent elements essential to any social situation in an adequate manner. It comprises uncertainty, time and space, social interaction, unintended effects, as well as culture and institutions. The authors suggest, therefore, the socioeconomic context as an (...) alternative approach to analyzing social situations. It consists of four basic elements: (1) dominant worldviews, (2) institutions and technologies, (3) relative prices, and (4) political instruments. The alternative approach was applied with some success to analyzing inter alia problems of unemployment as well as of transformation. (shrink)
Early reactions to the publication of Harold Garfinkel's Studies in Ethnomethodology, which have persisted over the passing decades, was that ethnomethodology could not address what sociology deemed to be socially significant matters such as 'power' and 'the state'. This, however, is not the case. How such matters enter into the practical everyday affairs of members is of equal interest to ethnomethodology when compared to how any matter enters into members' everyday life, and how they display that. It just does not (...) have more importance. Egon Bittner spelt this out with regard to Weber's interest in bureaucracy when he reminds sociology that when Weber talked about efficiency he was not referring to an objective standard but as something that is attuned to practical interests as they emerge in the context of everyday life. This paper examines some of the actions and interactions that were encountered in a Governmental Department in one of the European countries. It makes visible how characterisations of bureaucracy such as 'rational', and 'efficient' are achieved in the actions and interactions of Department employees, and some of the practices involved in that achievement. Garfinkel, and ethnomethodology in general, are not, in principle, to be found wanting where matters of overarching, primordial interest to sociology are concerned. (shrink)
Open peer commentary on the article “Observing Environments” by Hugo F. Alrøe & Egon Noe. Upshot: We discuss the environmental terminology of Jakob von Uexküll in the context of Alrøe Egon Noe’s reflections, and to examine more deeply the multi-perspectivity that arises from a combination of von Uexküll’s and Luhmann’s systems theories. The complexity yielded by an unpacking of the term “environment” sheds light on the difficulties in finding common understandings for solving wicked problems.
Organic farming is expected to contribute to conserving national biodiversity on farms, especially remnant, old, and undisturbed small biotopes, forests, and permanent grassland. This objective cannot rely on the legislation of organic farming solely, and to succeed, farmers need to understand the goals behind it. A set of indicators with the purpose of facilitating dialogues between expert and farmer on wildlife quality has been developed and tested on eight organic farms. “Weed cover in cereal fields,” was used as an indicator (...) of floral and faunal biodiversity in the cultivated land, and “uncultivated biotope area” on the farm was used as a general measure of wildlife habitats. Functional grouping of herbaceous plants (discriminating between “high conservation value” plant species and “competitive”/“ruderal” species) and low mobility butterflies were used as indicators of conservation value, especially focusing on the few sites left with considerable remnant conservation value. The dialog processes revealed that the organic farmers’ ideas and goals of conservation of wildlife quality were not necessarily the same as for biologists; the farmers expressed very different opinions on the biological rooted idea, that wildlife quality is related to the absence of agricultural impact. However, farmers also stated that the information given by the indicators and especially the dialogue with the biologist had influenced their perception and awareness of wildlife. We conclude that, combined with a dialogue process, using these indicators when mapping wildlife quality could be an important key component of a farm wildlife management advisory tool at farm level. (shrink)
Open peer commentary on the article “Observing Environments” by Hugo F. Alrøe & Egon Noe. Upshot: The following remarks elaborate on the basic concepts of observation and environment. Some extensions are suggested, mainly from the perspective of Luhmann’s theory of social systems. Especially, the concept of structural couplings is given more emphasis, not least because of its relevance to the sustainability debate.
Open peer commentary on the article “Observing Environments” by Hugo F. Alrøe & Egon Noe. Upshot: Complementary to Alrøe and Noe’s discussion of constructivist notions of environment, world, etc., this commentary addresses the closely-related notion of agency in constructivist theories – in particular, the question of what would be required for artificial agency – and identifies open questions and fundamental disagreements among constructivist theorists.
We capture the principal models of computation and specification in the literature by a uniform set of transparent mathematical descriptions which—starting from scratch—provide the conceptual basis for a comparative study.1.
Previous papers have introduced the idea of a Dialectical Inquiring System (DIS), i.e., an Information System which for any issue presents strong pro and con arguments. The previous papers showed how the DIS could be made scientifically operational in terms of Russell Ackoff's Behavioral Theory of Communication. In this paper we show how the DIS can be represented in terms of Egon Brunswik's Lens Model. The Brunswik Lens Model formulation is most appropriate for the design of Behavioral Science experiments. (...) It also illuminates further properties of the DIS. We discuss both the use and current limitations of the model in terms of an example currently under experimental investigation. The paper, in effect, argues vigorously for a new methodology of science that is founded on anexplicit, systematic, andcontrolled use of conflict. (shrink)