From: DidacticRa@aol.com
Date: 11/22/03

Replying to LO30793 --

Hi, Ing. Jorge Felipe Sepúlveda-Haugen

You wrote:

"I would like to have different opinion about the current political
process (not democrats or republicans, system as a whole) and to try
to understand why is it so difficult to implement systems thinking
(L.O) at the political level (Congress, Senate, Federal and State
Powers, etc), to have a diagnosis, how to change the system, and
benefits of implementing a real Learning Government...Thanks"

Can't help much - just commiserate. The political system is fare more
complicated than the scholarly world should be - yet I share the same
frustrations. Let me quote something I have written to be posted on
three academic discussion groups. I have not yet done so because I am
waiting for a special issue of Management Decision to come out so I
can direct readers to it:

The story of a fascinating experience, a conclusion, and a major
remaining question.
The story

Probably every professional, academic and practitioner, except those
whose heads are deep in the sand, is aware that many people, and
especially many managers, are far less than fully competent in
discharging their responsibilities toward all stakeholders - staff
members, family members, other individual and organizational ones.
Most of us are also aware that, while it does not carry the full
blame, our educational system overall, and especially management
education and development, is not adequately up to the task of
developing these competencies. This is especially true with respect
to helping learners acquire the habits that lead to critical thinking,
problems solving and other decision making.
Here is where the experience comes in. A few weeks ago I started on a
most unsophisticated experiment - to see whether I could awaken an
interest in doing something about that among a self-selected audience
of management and leadership academics, and apparently concerned
practicing managers. This comes after many years of unsuccessfully
reaching similar audiences with published books, papers and articles.
I posted a message on this subject on this and on two other
professional lists. I suggested that we might jointly come up with an
approach that would help individuals and organizations define a short
list of questions, appropriate to their views and situation, that
would help them enhance their decision making competence (for all
types of decisions). After some initial flurry of interest, roughly
relevant to the issues that I had raised, the discussions no longer
addressed this point but went off in various directions of specific
interest to individual posters.
Then I tried, on the most active list, to refocus the discussion,
twice - to no avail.
Why, I am wondering, is there so little interest in what could
possibly be a meritorious innovative idea to enhance the discipline.
The reasons I say that there may be merit is the fact that the concept
(a set of questions) that I have offered from different perspectives
for critical analysis, is universally applicable, comprehensive,
integrated, actionable, widely supported by the theories in the
literature and because, so far, there has not been one substantive
criticism raised, in all these years.
I am not suggesting that I am indeed bringing something useful - maybe
I am deluding myself despite what seems to be overwhelming evidence.
The conclusion

The fascinating part of the experience is the lack of interest - where
are the scholars who, I thought, would want to investigate and analyze
ideas that might possibly be useful for expanding the knowledge base
of their discipline, and do so without negative preconceptions or
assumptions? Where are the practitioners who are seeking
'excellence', and the consultants who might benefit from improved

The remaining question

Which brings up an even more interesting challenge - is it possible to
constructively pursue a complex idea with a diverse audience that
might potentially benefit from any useful conclusion? If yes, then
how? Suggestions on that question would be most welcome.


I would be interested in your reaction and then we could explore
strategies, if you wish to do that.


Erwin (Rausch) didacticra@aol.com  and erausch@kean.edu



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