Paradigmatic Metamorphosis and Organisational Development
Systems Research and Behavioural Science, Vol. 20, pp. 177-199, 2003
19 Pages Posted: 16 Mar 2009
Date Written: 2003
Paradigms metamorphose when they develop a new frame of reference. Two examples of paradigmatic metamorphosis are examined that together can be argued to formulate an evolutionary approach to managerial cybernetics. Organisation Development (OD) is a well-established soft methodology used extensively to engineer cultural change in organisations. OD can be set within Viable Systems Theory (VST), itself a conceptual development of the managerial cybernetic theory that underlies the Viable Systems Model (VSM). To illustrate this, a frame of reference is created that looks at systemic transformational processes. VST can operate as a general framework for this within which OD, VSM, and indeed the principles of Habermas's theory of communicative action can be embedded. A result of this exploration is to show how a managerial cybernetic form of OD can be developed to improve the way organisations can be diagnosed in complex change situations that must be managed.
Keywords: paradigmatic metamorphosis, evolving Organisational Development, managerial cybernetics
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