Ultimately we will only understand biological agency when we have developed a theory of the organization of biological processes, and science is still a long way from attaining that goal. It may be possible nonetheless to develop a list of necessary conditions for the emergence of minimal biological agency. The authors offer a model of molecular autonomous agents which meets the five minimal physical conditions that are necessary (and, we believe, conjointly sufficient) for applying agential language in biology: autocatalytic (...) reproduction; work cycles; boundaries for reproducing individuals; self-propagating work and constraint construction; and choice and action that have evolved to respond to food or poison. When combined with the arguments from preadaptation and multiple realizability, the existence of these agents is sufficient to establish ontological emergence as against what one might call Weinbergian reductionism. Minimal biological agents are emphatically not conscious agents, and accepting their existence does not commit one to any robust theory of human agency. Nor is there anything mystical, dualistic, or non-empirical about the emergence of agency in the biosphere. Hence the emergence of molecular autonomous agents, and indeed ontological emergence in general, is not a negation of or limitation on careful biological study but simply one of its implications. (shrink)
In this paper we aim to show that phenomenal consciousness is realized by a particular level of brain operational organization and that understanding human consciousness requires a description of the laws of the immediately underlying neural collective phenomena, the nested hierarchy of electromagnetic fields of brain activity – operational architectonics. We argue that the subjective mental reality and the objective neurobiological reality, although seemingly worlds apart, are intimately connected along a unified metastable continuum and are both guided by the (...) universal laws of the physical world such as criticality, self-organization and emergence. (shrink)
Possibly the most fundamental scientific problem is the origin of time and causality. The inherent difficulty is that all scientific theories of origins and evolution consider the existence of time and causality as given. We tackle this problem by starting from the concept of self-organization, which is seen as the spontaneous emergence of order out of primordial chaos. Self-organization can be explained by the selective retention of invariant or consistent variations, implying a breaking of the initial symmetry exhibited (...) by randomness. In the case of time, we start from a random graph connecting primitive “events”. Selection on the basis of consistency eliminates cyclic parts of the graph, so that transitive closure can transform it into a partial order relation of precedence. Causality is assumed to be carried by causal “agents” which undergo a more traditional variation and selection, giving rise to causal laws that are partly contingent, partly necessary. (shrink)
Organization in a tangled world -- Process views of organization -- Alfred North Whitehead on process -- Bruno Latour on relativizing the social, and the becoming of networks -- Niklas Luhmann on autopoiesis and recursiveness in social systems -- James March on decision processes and organization : a logic of streams -- Karl Weick on organizing and sensemaking -- A scheme for process based organizational analysis -- Some implications for organizational analysis.
The purpose of this study was to assess the relationships among ethical context, organizational commitment, and person-organization fit using a sample of 304 young working adults. Results indicated that corporate ethical values signifying different cultural aspects of an ethical context were positively related to both organizational commitment and person-organization fit. Organizational commitment was also positively related to person-organization fit. The findings suggest that the development and promotion of an ethical context might enhance employees' workplace experiences, and companies (...) should consider adopting ethical policies that support principled conduct, punish unethical actions, and increase individual perceptions of an ethical company environment. (shrink)
In this article an epistemological framework is proposed in order to integrate the emergentist thought with systemic studies on biological autonomy, which are focused on the role of organization. Particular attention will be paid to the role of the observer’s activity, especially: (a) the different operations he performs in order to identify the pertinent elements at each descriptive level, and (b) the relationships between the different models he builds from them. According to the approach sustained here, organization will (...) be considered as the result of a specific operation of identification of the relational properties of the functional components of a system, which do not necessarily coincide with the intrinsic properties of its structural constituents. Also, an epistemological notion of emergence—that of “complex emergence”—will be introduced, which can be defined as the insufficiency, even in principle, of a single descriptive modality to provide a complete description of certain classes of systems. This integrative framework will allow us to deal with two issues in biological and emergentist studies: (1) distinguishing the autonomy proper of living systems from some physical processes like those of structural stability and pattern generation, and (2) reconsidering the notion of downward causation not as a direct or indirect influence of the whole on its parts, but instead as an epistemological problem of interaction between descriptive domains in which the concept of organization proposed and the observational operations related to it play a crucial role. (shrink)
Recent work on self organization promises an explanation of complex order which is independent of adaptation. Self-organizing systems are complex systems of simple units, projecting order as a consequence of localized and generally nonlinear interactions between these units. Stuart Kauffman offers one variation on the theme of self-organization, offering what he calls a ``statistical mechanics'' for complex systems. This paper explores the explanatory strategies deployed in this ``statistical mechanics,'' initially focusing on the autonomy of statistical explanation as it (...) applies in evolutionary settings and then turning to Kauffman's analysis. Two primary morals emerge as a consequence of this examination: first, the view that adaptation and self-organization should be seen as competing theories or models is misleading and simplistic; and second, while we need a synthesis treating self-organization and adaptation as geared toward different problems, at different levels of organization, and deploying different methods, we do not yet have such a synthesis. (shrink)
Taking an international approach and crossing disciplinary barriers this exciting book takes a groundbreaking approach to the complex subject of philosophy and its relationship to organizations. Divided into 'how', 'what' and 'why', this exciting new book examines philosophy and its relationship to organizations. Taking an international approach and crossing disciplinary barriers this key book takes a groundbreaking approach to a complex subject. Accessibly written in an engaging style, each chapter covers new ground and encourages the reader to reflect on the (...) relations between philosophy and organization. The book ends with a 'how to' guide for philosophy and organization, engaging philosophy in practice as a re-organization of thought and practice. (shrink)
Non-profit (NP) organizations present complex challenges in managing stakeholder relationships, particularly during times of environmental change. This places a premium on knowing which stakeholders really matter if an effective relationship marketing strategy is to be developed. This article presents the successful application of a model, which combines Mitchell’s theory of stakeholder saliency and Coviello’s framework of contemporary marketing practices in a leading NP organization in the U.K. A cooperative enquiry approach is used to explore stakeholder relationships, dominant marketing practices, (...) and to surface differing perceptions about the organization’s marketing strategy. Resolving these differences sets the scene for developing choices in marketing strategy for the future. (shrink)
The Darwinian concept of natural selection was conceived within a set of Newtonian background assumptions about systems dynamics. Mendelian genetics at first did not sit well with the gradualist assumptions of the Darwinian theory. Eventually, however, Mendelism and Darwinism were fused by reformulating natural selection in statistical terms. This reflected a shift to a more probabilistic set of background assumptions based upon Boltzmannian systems dynamics. Recent developments in molecular genetics and paleontology have put pressure on Darwinism once again. Current work (...) on self-organizing systems may provide a stimulus not only for increased problem solving within the Darwinian tradition, especially with respect to origins of life, developmental genetics, phylogenetic pattern, and energy-flow ecology, but for deeper understanding of the very phenomenon of natural selection itself. Since self-organizational phenomena depend deeply on stochastic processes, self-organizational systems dynamics advance the probability revolution. In our view, natural selection is an emergent phenomenon of physical and chemical selection. These developments suggest that natural selection may be grounded in physical law more deeply than is allowed by advocates of the autonomy of biology, while still making it possible to deny, with autonomists, that evolutionary explanations can be modeled in terms of a deductive relationship between laws and cases. We explore the relationship between, chance, self-organization, and selection as sources of order in biological systems in order to make these points. (shrink)
Globalization processes have resulted in greater complexity, interdependence and limited resources. Consequently, no one sector can effectively respond to today's business or wider challenges and opportunities. Non-government organizations and corporations are increasingly engaging each other in recognition that shareholder and societal value are intrinsically linked. For both sectors, these partnerships can create an enabling environment to address social issues and can generate social capital. Located in the Australian context, this paper explores the dimensions of community organization capacity building as (...) an aspect of business-community organization partnerships. An Australian case study is used to demonstrate the benefits to business, community organizations and ultimately the communities in which the corporation is embedded and which are serviced by the community organization. (shrink)
Historical aspects of the issue are also broached. Intuitions relative to self-organization can be found in the works of such key Western philosophical figures as Aristotle, Leibniz and Kant. Interacting with more recent authors and cybernetics, self-organization represents a notion in keeping with the modern world’s discovery of radical complexity. The themes of teleology and emergence are analyzed by philosophers of sciences with regards to the issues of modelization and scientific explanation. (publisher, edited).
A vision of a living code of ethics is proposed to counter the emphasis on negative phenomena in the study of organizational ethics. The living code results from the harmonious interaction of authentic leadership, five key organizational processes (attraction–selection–attrition, socialization, reward systems, decision-making and organizational learning), and an ethical organizational culture (characterized by heightened levels of ethical awareness and a positive climate regarding ethics). The living code is the cognitive, affective, and behavioral manifestation of an ethical organizational identity. We draw (...) on business ethics literature, positive organizational scholarship, and management literature to outline the elements of positive ethical organizations as those exemplary organizations consistently practicing the highest levels of organizational ethics. In a positive ethical organization, the right thing to do is the only thing to do. (shrink)
We explore experimental methods used to study the phenomena of perceptual organization, first studied by the Gestalt psychologists. We describe an application of traditional psychophysics to perceptual organization and offer alternative methods. Among these, we distinguish two approaches that use multistable stimuli: (1) phenomenological psychophysics, in which the observer's response is assumed to accurately and directly reflect perceptual experience; and (2) the interference paradigm, in which an observer's response is evaluated as correct or incorrect because it pertains to (...) a corrigible task, but does not directly reflect the observer's experience. We show that phenomenological psychophysics can yield valuable information about perceptual organization and lends itself to the development of quantitative theory. We discuss some criticisms of the method and argue that the two approaches that use multistable stimuli are complementary. We also compare each of the approaches with traditional psychophysics. We conclude that the several methods are convergent. (shrink)
A companion volume to In the Realm of Organization, this book explores in detail the intricate relationships that exist between technology, representation and organization from a diversity of perspectives, relocating the study of organization in wider social theory.
The existing literature on the relationship between organizational commitment and ethical decision making suggests that ethical decision makers with higher organizational commitment are less likely to engage in ethically questionable behaviors. The ethical behaviors previously studied in an organizational commitment context have been organization-harm issues in which the organization was harmed and the individual benefited (e.g., overstating an expense report). There is another class of ethical issues in an organizational context, however. These other issues, termed organization-gain issues, (...) focus on the organization obtaining a benefit while outsiders, such as investors, are harmed (e.g., overstating reported revenue). We explore whether individuals with higher organizational commitment are more or less likely to engage in questionable behaviors that benefit the organization. Results of our study indicate that individuals with higher organizational commitment are less likely to engage in ethically questionable behaviors, regardless of whether the behaviors are organization-harm or organizational-gain issues. (shrink)
Neural organization: Structure, function, and dynamics shows how theory and experiment can supplement each other in an integrated, evolving account of the brain's structure, function, and dynamics. (1) Structure: Studies of brain function and dynamics build on and contribute to an understanding of many brain regions, the neural circuits that constitute them, and their spatial relations. We emphasize Szentágothai's modular architectonics principle, but also stress the importance of the microcomplexes of cerebellar circuitry and the lamellae of hippocampus. (2) Function: (...) Control of eye movements, reaching and grasping, cognitive maps, and the roles of vision receive a functional decomposition in terms of schemas. Hypotheses as to how each schema is implemented through the interaction of specific brain regions provide the basis for modeling the overall function by neural networks constrained by neural data. Synthetic PET integrates modeling of primate circuitry with data from human brain imaging. (3) Dynamics: Dynamic system theory analyzes spatiotemporal neural phenomena, such as oscillatory and chaotic activity in both single neurons and (often synchronized) neural networks, the self-organizing development and plasticity of ordered neural structures, and learning and memory phenomena associated with synaptic modification. Rhythm generation involves multiple levels of analysis, from intrinsic cellular processes to loops involving multiple brain regions. A variety of rhythms are related to memory functions. The Précis presents a multifaceted case study of the hippocampus. We conclude with the claim that language and other cognitive processes can be fruitfully studied within the framework of neural organization that the authors have charted with John Szentágothai. Key Words: cognitive maps; computational neuroscience; dynamics; hippocampus; memory; modular architectonics; neural modeling; neural organization; neural plasticity; rhythmogenesis; Szentágothai. (shrink)
Organizational aesthetics, both as a body of theory and a method of inquiry, is a rapidly expanding area of the organizational sciences. The Aesthetics of Organization accessibly draws key contributions delineating the emerging parameters of the field. It explains the significance of concepts devised by postmodern thinkers, through which emerge meaning and order in organizations. Methodological problems associated with investigations of the aesthetic are also highlighted so the reader can identify and understand the importance of recent ideas on vision, (...) perspective and periphery for learning in organizations. Through the contributions of leading international theorists, organizational aesthetics is defined in greater historical and theoretical depth, with a broad conceptual and practical range which academics will find invaluable. (shrink)
An exploratory model is presented as a heuristic to indicate how individual perceptions of corporate reputation (before joining) and corporate ethical values (after joining) generate specific individual organizational senses of fit. The paper suggests that an ethical dimension of person-organization fit may go some way in explaining superior acquisition and retention of staff by those who are attracted to specific organizations by levels of corporate social performance consonant with their ethical expectations, or who remain with them by virtue of (...) better personal ethical fits with extant organizational ethical values. Specifically, the model suggests that individual misfits that arise from ethical expectations that either exceed or fall short of perceived organizational ethical performances lead to problematic acquisition and retention behavioural outcomes. (shrink)
In recent years the benefit corporation has emerged as a new organizational form dedicated to legitimizing the pursuit of corporate social responsibility (CSR). Eschewing traditional governmental authority, the benefit corporation derives its moral legitimacy from the values of its owners and the oversight of a third party evaluator. This research identifies the benefit corporation as a new type of gray sector organization (GSO) and applies extant theory on GSOs to analyze its design. In particular, it shows how the theory (...) of GSO accountability can be used to assess the potential of benefit corporations for enhancing CSR. This research first examines the statutes that have established benefit corporations in five states in the US, along with bills in other states, to show how legislation defines their specific public benefits and holds them accountable for delivering these benefits. It then compares the accountability of the benefit corporation with that of other corporate - centric GSOs, e.g., GSOs that closely resemble traditional corporations. It concludes with significant design-based concerns about the utility of the benefit corporation as an effective organization for implementing CSR. (shrink)
What makes a democratic school democratic? This question is answered using the example of the Swiss education system; the focus, however, is not on the usual pedagogic perspective of teaching democracy, but on the democratic organization of the education system. The discussion concentrates on two basic requirements for a democratic education organization: on the one hand, education for all under the equal rights premise calls for the definition of an educational minimum for all students. At the same time, (...) defining this minimum presupposes selection among the students. For part of the students are -- through the use of public funds -- being educated beyond the minimum; a situation which needs to be democratically legitimized. The selection is based on academic performance; as yet, a valuable alternative to this type of selection does not exist. On the other hand, it is essential in a democratic education organization that the authorities put in charge of certain responsibilities are democratically legitimized and controlled. The same applies to newly created authorities, such as principalships or autonomous schools, the introduction of which has been demanded repeatedly for some time now. (shrink)
In this research we apply the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) to study decisions related to information privacy protection. A TPB-based model was proposed to investigate whether organization-based self-esteem and perceived deindividuation can be employed to measure the strength of the perceived behavioral control construct. In addition, we examined if the addition of a causal path linking subjective norms to attitudes and another causal path linking organization-based self-esteem to subjective norms enhanced our research model's predicting power. Our study (...) shows that information systems (IS) professionals' intentions to protect personal information privacy are influenced by their attitudes, subjective norms, perceived deindividuation, and organization-based self-esteem. It further shows that attitudes are influenced by subjective norms, which, in turn, are influenced by organization-based self-esteem. (shrink)
International organizations such as the United Nations, the World Trade Organization, the European Union and the World Bank play an increasing role in international politics. This broad-ranging and up-to-date textbook provides a theoretical and empirical introduction to the politics and policies of such organizations.
This article gives a practice-based and theoretical overview of the transformation from a traditional hierarchical organization in the care and cure sector towards a so-called Community-driven organization providing human happiness to 6000 elderly people. The actual case study is intertwined with conceptual information for better understanding of the innovative transition which took place at Humanitas. The case description includes its initial situation, its new core values, mission and objectives and shows the sequence of emerging policies and interventions that (...) resulted in a stakeholder oriented business model for the care sector. The selected concepts are Graves'' Emerging Cyclical Level of Existence Theory (or Spiral Dynamics), Ken Wilber''s Four Quadrant Model, Roberts Simons'' Four Levers of Control and various elements from the European Corporate Sustainability Framework sponsored by the European Commission. The conclusion marks the match between theory and practice in transforming Humanitas Rotterdam into providing cure, care, housing and well-being to elderly people. (shrink)
Primarily focused on the theoretical aspects of International Organization, this book provides an in-depth examination of competing theories through thematic chapters. Intended to fill the gap between introductory textbooks and primary sources of theory, International Organization , is useful for upper-level international relations courses with a significant emphasis on theory.
Recent neuroimaging studies in both human and non-human primates have identified face selective activation in the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex even in the absence of working memory demands. Further, research has suggested that this face-selective response is largely driven by the presence of the eyes. However, the nature and origin of visual category responses in the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex remain unclear. Further, in a broader sense, how do these findings relate to our current understandings of lateral prefrontal cortex? What (...) do these findings tell us about the underlying function and organization principles of the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex? What is the future direction for investigating visual representations in this cortex? This review focuses on the function, topography, and circuitry of the ventral lateral prefrontal cortex to enhance our understanding of the evolution and development of this cortex. (shrink)
Converging theories and data suggest that atypical patterns of functional and structural connectivity are a hallmark neurobiological feature of autism. However, empirical studies of functional connectivity, or, the correlation of MRI signal between brain regions, have largely been conducted during task performance and/or focused on group differences within one network (e.g., the default mode network). This narrow focus on task-based connectivity and single network analyses precludes investigation of whole-brain intrinsic network organization in autism. To assess whole-brain network properties in (...) adolescents with autism, we collected resting-state functional connectivity MRI (rs-fcmri) data from neurotypical adolescents (NT) and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). We used graph theory metrics on rs-fcmri data with 34 regions of interest (i.e., nodes) that encompass 4 different functionally-defined networks: cingulo-opercular, cerebellar, fronto-parietal, and default mode (DMN) (Fair et al., 2009). Contrary to our hypotheses, network analyses revealed minimal differences between groups with one exception. Betweenness centrality, which indicates the degree to which a seed (or node) functions as a hub within and between networks was greater for participants with autism for the right lateral parietal region of the DMN. Follow-up seed-based analyses demonstrated greater functional connectivity in ASD than NT groups between the right lateral parietal seed and another region of the DMN, the anterior medial prefrontal cortex. Greater connectivity between these regions was related to lower ADOS scores (i.e. lower impairment) in autism. These findings do not support current theories of underconnectivity in autism, but, rather, underscore the need for future studies to systematically examine factors that can influence patterns of intrinsic connectivity such as autism severity, age, and head motion. (shrink)
The paper analyses restructuring processes occuring with the introduction of information technologies into firms in Austria and assesses how far the evidence lends support to the thesis of a fundamental change in rationalization patterns as postulated by continental industrial sociologists claiming the emergence of a novel type of âsystemic rationalizationâ. Based on a research perspective putting emphasis on several levels of social mediation of technological change the broad conclusion is the following: there are clear indications of a novel âsystemicâ approach (...) to rationalization but the associated forms of work organization show substantial variation. The analysis of the influence of national-level institutions, industry- and firm-specific conditions, and their role in micro-political processes of system and work design, points towards an underutilization of work humanization potentials and suggests an increase in skill supply as one of the possible intervention strategies. (shrink)
An apparent conflict between preferences for hierarchical as opposed to distributed organizations is evident in arguments about disciplinary and interdisciplinary organization. It characterizes as well a wide array of other arenas ranging from the biological to the political. In this article, parallels between biological, neurobiological, and social observations are explored in an effort to outline a general approach that may be useful in thinking about interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary activities as well as forms of social organization in general. A (...) key element in the approach is an ongoing individual and collective process of story creation, sharing, and revising. The article is offered both as a contribution to better understanding interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary work and as an illustrative example of the potentials and problems of such work. (shrink)
Impairments in visual perceptual organization abilities are a repeatedly observed cognitive deficit in schizophrenia. These impairments have been found to be most prominent among patients with histories of poor premorbid social functioning, disorganized symptoms, and poor clinical outcomes. Despite the demonstration of significant sex differences for these clinical factors in schizophrenia, the extent of sex differences for visual perceptual organization in schizophrenia is unknown. Therefore, we investigated the extent to which previously known correlates (premorbid social sexual functioning and (...) disorganized symptoms) and a novel factor (participant sex) accounted for performance on two perceptual organization tasks (contour integration and Ebbinghaus illusion) that have previously demonstrated sensitivity to schizophrenia. We also determined the relative degree to which each of these factors predicted task scores over and above the others. Schizophrenia patients (N = 109, 43 female) from different levels of care were ascertained. Female patients demonstrated higher contour integration scores, but lower performance on the context sensitivity index of the Ebbinghaus illusion, compared to males. Contour integration performance was significantly associated with poorer premorbid adolescent social sexual functioning and higher levels of disorganized symptoms, supporting past results that indicate a relationship among poor premorbid social sexual functioning, disorganized symptoms, and visual perceptual abnormalities in schizophrenia. However, analyses of Ebbinghaus illusion performance suggests there is a complex relationship among patient sex, clinical factors and perceptual abilities with relatively intact bottom-up grouping processes in females, but greater problems, compared to males with more top-down mediated context sensitivity. Therefore, sex differences may be an important consideration for future studies of visual perceptual organization in schizophrenia. (shrink)
This paper examines an aspect of the grammar-interaction interface with respect to how participants orient to intra-turn phrasal unit boundaries as a locus that has interactional import for turn and sequence organization in Korean conversation. Phrasal unit boundaries in Korean serve as a space within a turn in which the speaker of the turn in-progress invites the recipient to acknowledge the speaker's point expressed up-to-that-point and collaboratively display his/her understanding thereof. In a sequentially and topically 'ripe' context, such unit (...) boundaries often constitute places where more active participation on the part of the recipient is invited in the form of collaborative completion in which the recipient co-constructs the primary speaker's on-going turn. Phrasal unit boundaries also provide interactional resources which the speaker may exploit to sequentially delete out a problem in talk, e.g., by a sort of tying operation in which a subsequently added phrasal unit ties back to the speaker's previous utterance to the effect that the intervening talk containing a problem is canceled out by way of being shown to have been an interruption of the speaker's turn in-progress. This practice points to an aspect of the way in which the 'agglutinative' grammatical process involving the use of phrasal units shapes interactional patterns as observed in the course of organizing turns/sequences and managing problems in talk. (shrink)
“Development” suggests that there is something that is developing, or changing over time. We can ask about temporal boundaries of that developmental process, asking when development begins or ends and whether it has defined stages along the way, for example. We can ask about spatial boundaries as well: where does the developing object start and end? For this article, I ask about the boundary definition of the developing organism in particular. What is an individual organism, and what defines it as (...) the same organism as it changes over time? In particular, how has this been answered historically: how have researchers described and explained what an individual developing organism is? This article explores ideas and approaches especially starting in the late 19th century, and in particular looks at the role of “organization.”. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: The Organized Body -- Technologies of Embodiment -- Subjective Empiricism and Organization -- Organization and Becoming -- Organization and Affirmation -- Organization as Joyful Practice -- Conclusion.
Conversation analysis (CA) is now what Kuhn once called a normal science. It has a discernible body of concepts, methods, and recognizable objects of analysis. More importantly, its considerable archive of accumulated findings has a very high degree of redundancy–in the positive sense that researchers have continually replicated the findings of their colleagues. It ought, then, in every respect, to be the envy of the social sciences generally and not easily dismissed as an abstruse and recondite branch of language studies (...) or “discourse analysis” concerned with merely trivial fragments of recorded talk as such. To help CA be respecified in this way, the present paper unearths a relatively unknown part of its history in the partial book manuscript of Harvey Sacks’s Aspects of the Sequential Organization of Conversation, circulated in mimeo to colleagues in 1970. There we find innumerable appeals to the now well-recognized fact that the practical actions of everyday talk have significant, culture-wide, formal structures that are the proper objects of the discipline. Or, in Sacks’s own terms, seemingly insignificant mundane events are generated by a powerful (if not always intuitively accessible) social “machinery.” The purpose of this paper is, then, to extract a sample of these aspects of Sacks’s Aspects in order to illustrate, sketch, or give a preliminary sense of just that point. (shrink)
Four articles in this issue of topiCS (volume 4, issue 1) argue against a computational approach in cognitive science in favor of a dynamical approach. I concur that the computational approach faces some considerable explanatory challenges. Yet the dynamicists’ proposal that cognition is self-organized seems to only go so far in addressing these challenges. Take, for instance, the hypothesis that cognitive behavior emerges when brain and body (re-)configure to satisfy task and environmental constraints. It is known that for certain systems (...) of constraints, no procedure can exist (whether modular, local, centralized, or self-organized) that reliably finds the right configuration in a realistic amount of time. Hence, the dynamical approach still faces the challenge of explaining how self-organized constraint satisfaction can be achieved by human brains and bodies in real time. In this commentary, I propose a methodology that dynamicists can use to try to address this challenge. (shrink)
This paper describes a set of ideal type organizations in a developmental sequence. As these descriptions are based on Spiral Dynamics (or Emerging Cyclical Levels of Existence Theory – ECLET), the types are labeled as Order, Success, Community and Synergy. Per type the author elaborated on the underlying value system and relating institutional structures, such as leadership role, governance and measurement format. As a summary, a Transition Matrix is presented which indicate the paradigm shifts per discipline/department, as manifested in the (...) subsequent ideal type organizations. As Order and Success generally describe the majority of corporations in Western Economies, the latter two types introduce new approaches to more innovative – and more sustainable/responsible – ways to doing business. Based on Community Values, the author introduces a new measurement format which is the foundation for a systemic and coherent set of management tools to be used in a stakeholder approach. These tools relate to the strategic, tactical and operational tasks of management and have been developed by researchers of the European Corporate Sustainability Framework (ECSF) consortium. The set includes two tools which are generic: the Strategic Sustainability Scan (Strategy) and the Sustainability Matrix, which is a self-assessment tool (tactics). Three operational tools are context and industry specific: These are the Community related Responsive Business Scorecard (RBS) and Benchmark Format for measuring and monitoring sustainability performance and a methodology – a Management Information System – to generate information on people, planet and profit in order to provide data for the set of key performance indicators. (shrink)
The function of the state as a symbol of identity has become increasingly important as major powers of the pre-Cold War era have given way to self-determination. The conventional role of the state has, however, simultaneously been challenged by the process of globalization which transcends such national boundaries. In this book, Barbara Emadi-Coffin seeks to explain this contradiction through a radical new theory. Emadi-Coffin analyzes the increasing interaction of multinational corporations, international organizations and transnational interest groups, such as Greenpeace and (...) Amnesty International, in processess of the global political economy. (shrink)
This study introduced a phenomenological approach to the study of the companies that committed corporate crimes. The author first developed the epistemology of normative control which is based on the philosophical ground of phenomenology, sociology of knowledge, ethnomethodology, Habermas's normative theories, and Foucault's normalizing discourse in the context of organizations. He, then, showed the procedures for conducting a qualitative and phenomenological empirical case study of an aggressive Japanese company whose name appeared in the media for its scandal in Tokyo. The (...) inquiry revealed the generative mechanism of normative control and the patterns of constructing social reality of workplaces in a Japanese company. (shrink)
Many science systems are witnessing the rise of intermediary organizations with a coordinating mission, but to date a systematic understanding of their function and effects is lacking. The aim of this paper is to contribute to the understanding of the coordinating efforts of intermediary organizations. Starting from the definition of coordination as the establishment or strengthening of a relationship among the activities in a system, with the aim to enhance their common effectiveness, I develop a heuristic framework that facilitates the (...) systematic analysis of coordination in science. I illustrate and substantiate my framework with the empirical case study of a Dutch coordination task force in the area of chemical technologies. Thanks to the framework I could disentangle a number of functions that this task force fulfils concerning research programming, funding allocation and supporting interactions and collaborations. This approach enabled me to systematically analyse a very heterogeneous set of processes that each deserve to be called coordination. The analysis yields a clear overview of eight coordination processes that are each described in terms of activities, intervention, relationships, mechanisms and performance. I conclude my paper with suggestions for further research on coordination in the science system. (shrink)
This book examines the organization as embodied experience. An international range of contributors is assembled to deal explicitly with the 'maternal' aspects of organization. This challenging book will be of essential interest to all critical management theorists. With its innovative approach, it will also appeal to students, teachers, and all those looking for an approach to management that does justice to the complexity, ambivalence and chaos of the world of organizing.