Re: Speed, Technology, Progress LO59

Fri, 10 Feb 1995 11:11:48 -0600 (CST)

Stever Robbins hazarded an explanation to the lack of learning in academia
(i.e., avowed learning organizations). He tried pop-psychology; let me
try pop-sociology. Universities and their faculty consider themselves the
repositories of truth. If they were to place the customer ahead of their
discipline, they fear that the "standards" of the discipline would be
watered down and eventually disappear with consequent loss to
civilization. While this sounds absurd to some, I believe deep-down
faculty feel that theya re the last defenders of truth, culture, and
standards against the onslaught of modernity. This tradition goes back a
long way. One professor I heard said the last time the university was the
source of new ideas was when they introduced Aristotle to the Middle Ages.

We do ourselves and the concept of the learning organization a disservice,
however, when we consider these faculty simply a bunch of benighted souls
who are covering their behinds. Rather unless we address their mental
models, their deepest held beliefs and assumptions, we will never make
progress on engaging in a real dialogue about the purpose of the
university in the 20th as opposed to the 12th century. "First strive to

Thanks for the comment Stever...

From: "PETER C. BISHOP (713/283-3323)" <>