Orthogonal Disciplines - A New Science of Diversity that Generates: College 2, Decade Colleges, Auxiliary Universities, Organizations as College Students, and Universities of Creativity
Journal of Policy Studies, Policy Studies Association of Japan, 2009
20 Pages Posted: 3 Apr 2013
Date Written: November 1, 2009
THREE RESEARCH QUESTIONS: What will solve some lackings in traditional disciplines? Be a scientific basis for cross-discipline work? Explain who rises to the top of all traditional fields?
Existing universities, with their disciplines and corresponding professions, are generating ever narrower people, given ever narrower educations, publishing theses on ever narrower topics, at the same time that more and more real problems of our societies are falling between the cracks between such narrow disciplines, professions, and people. Higher education is producing people of general incapability, well versed in sub-fields, so small, that virtually no one, outside the sub-field, can understand or use what they do. Combining different disciplines and professions, in particular projects or as cross-function teams, has proven difficult where not entirely ineffective. The basis of getting two or more different fields to interact well is missing or incomplete, due to tacit routines hard to make explicit and re-found in contexts of other disciplines, differing knowledge formats preferred in various disciplines and professions, and ignorance of social status markers and conditions in fields other than one’s own, among others.
RESULT - A categorical model of 54 orthogonal disciplines that purport to: solve lacks in traditional fields; form a scientific basis of cross-discipline work; and, explain who rises to the top of all traditional disciplines.
This paper presents 54 orthogonal disciplines, cutting across all traditional disciplines,and explaining who rises to their tops, that were suggested by 315 eminent people in 63 diverse strata of society, half American and half global. These 54 orthogonal fields solve failings in traditional ones, and constitute a research basis for getting different fields to deeply and precisely interact. These orthogonal fields are an alternative to other proposed bases of unifying the disciplines such as consilience (Harvard’s Wilson), cognitive psych (Harvard’s Bok), and the philosophy and epistemologies of knowledge (Clark, Kuhn and others).
METHOD - Recursive nomination process from 315 eminent nominators to 54 Sets of 150 people “great” at each orthogonal discipline.
A model of 63 strata of society was made, 5 people for each of the 63 strata were nominated via a delphi process among University of Chicago MBA students, for a total of 315, half American half global, these 315 were asked to nominate two things: the capability basis of all those at the top levels of performance in their respective field (these answers producing a categorical model of 54 orthogonal disciplines), and, later in time, 150 people for each of the 54 orthogonal disciplines who exhibited top level mastery of that orthogonal discipline (in whatever traditional field). Over 8100 people (54x150), thusly nominated as great at some particular orthogonal discipline were then given interviews and questionnaires over a five year period. The results were analyzed to produce categorical models of the 54 orthogonal disciplines and of the principal skill contents of each of those 54 orthogonal fields. This paper presents only the categorical model of the 54 orthogonal fields and other papers present the models of skills in each individual orthogonal field.
RESULTS - 54 orthogonal disciplines, that cut across all traditional ones, determining who rises to their tops, identified categorization of interview and questionnaire results resulted in a final model of 54 orthogonal fields, each of which cuts across all traditional fields and determines who rises to their tops.
DISCUSSION AND IMPLICATIONS - New sciences of: diversity, excellence, curriculum; new colleges of 92 courses for each orthogonal field.
Six applications of orthogonal disciplines are explored in some detail, with detailedexamples furnished for some and suggestive, but informal, datasets presented for others. These include: a second college for people between 38 and 42 (college 2), other college experiences between other decades of life (decade colleges); an entire meta-university surrounding existing ones and researching/teaching orthogonal disciplines (the auxiliary university); universities that teach departments, processes, events, managers, employees, professional staffs as students (entire organizations as college students); and entire colleges made up of 90 courses on one orthogonal discipline (a University of Creativity, for example). The paper closes with hypotheses and open questions that might be explored by further research.
Keywords: knowledge organization, meta-discipline, curriculum theory, cross-discipline, science of excellence, high performance, knowledge formats, re-doing Plato
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