Worldview Assumptions: Paradigm Shift in Progress?
Journal for Behavioral and Applied Management, Vol. 5, No. 3, Spring 2004
28 Pages Posted: 7 Oct 2013
Date Written: October 4, 2013
This paper is an empirical study of potential evidence in a paradigm shift from the traditional worldview (TWV) to the emerging worldview (EWV). In order to explore worldview assumptions broadly, we have chosen two major sources of academic and practitioner literature. All full-length articles from Administrative Science Quarterly and the Harvard Business Review from 1957 and 1997 are analyzed using narrative analysis. Analysis of four worldview dimensions coded — Level of Explanation (reductionism or holism), Causality (linear or mutual), Observation (objective or perspectival), and Interrelatedness (competition or cooperation) — suggest that a modest shift has occurred in the assumptions the authors of these articles made over the forty-year period. ASQ makes more EWV assumptions in 1997 than HBR. The greatest shift occurred in Interrelatedness, with a sizable increase in cooperation in 1997 and a decrease in competition.
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