Re: Is speed/technology really progress? LO86

Michael McMaster (
Sun, 12 Feb 1995 11:16:08 GMT

> LO39:
> > One of the big
> > questions in human organizations concerns whether or not emergent,
> > self organizing, behaviors exist, or probably more importantly, how to
> > control them (or whether they can be controlled, for that matter, and
> > if they can, how do we do it.) Can an LO exhibit self organizing, or
> > emergent behavior?

If emergent, self organising behaviour doesn't exist in organisations
already, then where does the possibility of learning exist? Aren't both
learning and organisation emergent phenomena? How can an LO not exhibit
emergent, self organising behaviour?

My assumption in working with a system which is composed of self
organising agents (human beings) and which emerged from beyond a
threshhold point of interaction bewteen such beings is that we are already
dealing with such systems and that most of our problems and
ineffectiveness is from attempting to limit or control the resulting
emergence on the one hand and from dealing with the individual agents as
independent on the other hand.

To keep the anthropomorphic and the merely metaphorical at bay, I begin
with the idea that organisation is a phenomenon rather than a thing and
that it is both emergent and self organising to begin with.

Is this useful to the dialogue?

Mike McMaster <>