Similarities, Connections, and Systems: The Search for a New by Niraj Verma

By Niraj Verma

Because the early Seventies, the formal version of rational inquiry has come lower than expanding assault by way of students in addition to practitioners within the enterprise administration, making plans, and coverage professions. Critics let us know that it ignores sentiments and feelings which are key to knowing expert perform. but, regardless of the assaults, there are few opponents for rationality and no usable substitute has emerged to take its position within the career. in actual fact a brand new functional paradigm is named for, and during this groundbreaking paintings, Niraj Verma is going past the feedback of rationality to offer a daring substitute version of inquiry-a new rationality for the professions.Inspired by means of the paintings of pragmatist William James, Verma proposes a strategy that fuses the rational and the irrational to supply execs an method of inquiry that extra thoroughly examines all the elements that impression the making plans method in a pragmatic, systematic method. An illuminating mix of philosophy, critique, and down-to-earth examples, Similarities, Connections, and platforms introduces a brand new, methodologically sound version of inquiry that aptly addresses the shortcomings of alternative types whereas last delicate to the objectives perform.

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Additional info for Similarities, Connections, and Systems: The Search for a New Rationality for Planning and Management

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Residents of Poletown lose out in a court battle when theft emotional pleas to protect their homes fail against the city's remorseless arguments about efficiency, costs, and benefits. The example shows how analytical reasoning acquires its power by reducing its subject matter to a few issues while simultaneously marginalizing all others. Chapter Three discuses systemic reasoning by investigating how the idea of systems has played out in management and planning. What started with the best of intentions as a comprehensive and more inclusive method of inquiry has today become precarious.

K is not satisfied with critiquing formal rationality; it also illuminates a path. Seen this way, James is a practitioner's philosopher. He is deeply worried about questions of action and change. His criticism of other philosophies, particularly analytic reasoning, warns us to be careful in letting consistency, efficiency, or procedure drive our inquiry. At the same time, his focus on psychology tells us how to replace logical consistency as the touchstone for inquiry. This makes James unique, even among pragmatists, and an inquiry inspired by James differs from contemporary pragmatism in many Page 10 ways.

But in his renews he made dear how strongly he felt about the agenda of bridging the divide between rigor and relevance, an agenda that he himself had developed over the years and which I am following in the book. Parts of the book have appeared in different forms in other places. My works on pragmatism and on metaphor and similarity were first laid out in papers in the Journal of Planning Education and Research, and Chapter Six, on the theory of the firm, derives from a joint article with West Churchman that appeared in Systems Practice.

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