> I'd like to see more dialogue on the
>foundations of our thinking instead of debate over their manifestations.
>For example, I presume that, as social systems in which knowledge is
>created/acquired, disseminated, and used (Huber, 1991), all organizations
>have embedded learning processes. Consequently, for me the notion of the
>"learning organization" makes little sense except as a redundancy.
In my book titled A SCIENCE OF GENERIC DESIGN: MANAGING COMPLEXITY
THROUGH SYSTEMS DESIGN, I set forth what I call the DOMAIN OF SCIENCE
MODEL. In this model, one tries to get people to construct sciences (yes,
management science and even computer science) in such a way as to separate
foundations, theory, and methodology. The book illustrates this in
practice as follows:
Chapter 5 on foundations, only 8 pages. (I'll say the areas a bit later
Chapter 6 on theory, 25 pages.
Chapter 7 on methodology, 66 pages.
The idea is to show explicitly the foundations, for two reasons:
(a) they furnish the essential "rock" against which theory and methodology
can be assessed; helping to show possible errors in theory and methodology
that violate the foundations
(b) they reveal the possible source of weakness in assumptions, etc.,
allowing for proposed changes at the heart of the matter.
The fact that almost none of the sciences follow this example is one of
the reasons it is so hard to come to grips with them in their
ever-expanding stress on methodology in lieu of the underlying root
It also illustrates the wisdom of Michel Focault in his
beautifully-written THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF KNOWLEDGE, in which he is quite
kind, yet unmercifully critical of the state of knowledge as presently
taken with little question. He is quite sure that assaults have to be
made on The Old Citadel.
John N. Warfield
Learning-org -- An Internet Dialog on Learning Organizations For info: <email@example.com> -or- <http://world.std.com/~lo/>