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Philosophy of Management

Volume 10, Issue 2, 2011
Foundations and Processes

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Displaying: 1-6 of 6 documents


1. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 10 > Issue: 2
Paul Griseri Editorial: Foundations and Processes
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2. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 10 > Issue: 2
Marja-Liisa Kakkuri-Knuuttila Philosophy Unites
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3. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 10 > Issue: 2
Jim Platts, Howard Harris The Place of Philosophy in Management
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Our purpose is not to define a particular philosophy of management but rather to demonstrate some of the ways in which philosophy – ethics, metaphysics, epistemology, logic and æsthetics – contributes to the practice of management. We identify a number of contemporary management questions, procedures or issues where the application of philosophical approaches is relevant and show how philosophical skills, an understanding of philosophical principles or exposure to philosophical discussion can contribute to improved management practice.In some ways the paper is a report on progress in the quest begun by Nigel Laurie and Christopher Cherry in the first issue of Philosophy of Management, then entitled Reason in Practice (2001), when they asked why philosophers have interested themselves so little in the entire field of management. We include some examples where philosophers have written about management, some where managers have shown the direct impact of philosophy on management effectiveness and somewhere potential remains. In much, we see links to process philosophy and to the need for conversation and reflection by and between managers and philosophers.This does not of itself show how philosophy can contribute to management education. A brief final section discusses the way in which moral creativity skills can be developed through reflection and describes how this has been done in the Manufacturing Leaders’ Programme at the Institute for Manufacturing at Cambridge and in the International Management Ethics & Values course taught to undergraduate management students in Adelaide, Singapore and Hong Kong. This will be taken up in a subsequent paper.
4. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 10 > Issue: 2
Katri Targama, Patrick Rang Exploring Schumacher and Popper: a Quest for the Philosophical Foundations of Project Cycle Management
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In this article we (a) interlink the philosophical ideas of Ernst Schumacher and Karl Popper within the framework of planning and management, (b) describe project management cases implemented using the principles of project cycle management (PCM) and (c) study whether the success or failure can be attributed to following these concepts.We consider two basic concepts for perceiving the world surrounding us: the concept of organisation and that of self-organisation. The former emphasises the predictability of the future, where the results of each activity are predetermined and can always be achieved through thorough analytical planning. The latter sees the world as a generic whole where numerous interactions take place simultaneously, leaving the future unknown. As it has been shown, for example, by Schumacher, Hayek and Popper, the real world is uncertain and orders of great complexity appear spontaneously in a self-organised manner.Mankind has thus to cope with the self-organising world and to plan and manage therein. PCM is one of the most widespread contemporary management techniques used for that purpose in both the private and public sectors. However, PCM lacks a proper theoretical basis as well as philosophical framework. We have proposed elsewhere that the concept of piecemeal social engineering elaborated by Popper in his The Poverty of Historicism could serve as a theoreticalbasis, which can combine the organisational nature of planning and the self-organising and fuzzy world.Thus the task is mentally to split the planning and implementation issue: to take the whole into pieces and rearrange them in a desired manner in the planning phase (concept of organisation; convergent problem solving). The actual implementation of the plan ought to be conducted following a stepwise approach, re-planning all through the process (concept of self-organisation; divergent problem solving). “The future cannot be forecast, but it can be explored.” Not allhuman actions are unpredictable, but we cannot be sure what the results would be or judge the value of an action based on its inclusion in some plan.
5. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 10 > Issue: 2
Per Ingvar Olsen The Relevance and Applicability of Process Metaphysics to Organizational Research
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Process metaphysics (process philosophy) has been suggested as a route, to a more ‘process-based’ approach to organizational studies, as opposed to a ‘substance-based’ view said to be dominant in Western thinking – including most contemporary organizational researchers. This paper explores some of the ideas of early-twentieth-century process thinkers and provides an interpretation of some of the major works of Alfred N. Whitehead. The objective is to evaluateits possible relevance to modern organizational research. The paper argues that Whitehead’s radical ontology – that was based on a generalization of quantum theory in physics – appears largely to have been refuted or disregarded by succeeding process philosophers. Furthermore, his epistemology is found to represent a process view on scientific knowledge creation taken for granted by most contemporary researchers. For different reasons, major elements of his theoriesdo not appear to be directly relevant to efforts to advance organizational theory into more radical process-based theories.On the other hand, the paper argues that the early-twentieth-century process thinkers – including Whitehead – offer a plurality of analytical conceptions that may serve as useful and inspirational contributions to further development of methods and perspectives to investigate into organizations, change and innovation processes. There are also particular approaches within the domain that have properties quite similar to some of those conceptions in process philosophy – like ‘sensemaking processes’ as represented by Karl Weick and others, which may in particular benefit from exploring the area of process philosophy.
6. Philosophy of Management: Volume > 10 > Issue: 2
Norma Romm Reconsidering Methodological Arguments: A Commentary on Stephen L. Smith’s Paper ‘Naïve Expertise: Spacious Alternative to the Standard Account of Method (SAM)’
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