Collective Intelligence LO30858

From: chris macrae (
Date: 12/29/03

Replying to LO30850 --

I expect that some people have explored this line of thinking before
and would love some bookmarks but an idea that crystallised in my mind
is that any large organisation is now the conflict of at least 3
different systems and unless we openly see that we are potentially
talking across purposes- when I say "see that" I mean understand what
way each system has opposite dynamics as well as what way it is common

The 3 systems I think of (vocabulary isn't necessary common) but hope
you see enough to recognise the opposites

The hierarchical organisation system

The self-organising (individual up) and co-organising systems (nets or
team or practice communities of individuals up) where top-down
hierarchal elements are removed save those that transparently
demonstrate sustaining purpose for the whole; I tend to think of any
real self-organisation as having a gravity that attracts people's
passions and helps them respect each other as part of the way of
innovating through conflict, paradox, change

The network organisation by which I think fundamentally of one that
realises (say) in world markets it isn't an island (so single
organisation in its right mind would wish to achieve all of a cluster
of world class competences that need to flow together to keep
sustaining a world number 1 solution or service of anything) but needs
to connect openly with selected great sustainable partners - so the
network of organisations become the system whose dynamic is most
vital, and this has big issues at the borders of big organisations
that few organisations in my knowledge have ever benchmarked maturely

A question I have to the whole of LO theory is which of these systems
do the 5 disciplines primarily apply to. According to the way I see
the 3 different organisational systems above they have conflicting
dynamics at least in some areas, and I don't recall LO theory always
clearly codifying how it changes what you construe as a function of
either which system you have in mind or how you are trying to
interface all three. In particular, I don't remember much discussion
as how to make governance and measurability applicable to all three.
Assuming that I am right in believing in system terms what you measure
isn't just the behaviours you get but what compounds over time

( I started with these 3 systems though in further detail I make a case
for networking age governance needing to value transparent interfacing
the dynamics of 10 sub-systems here

Chris Macrae,,, London & DC

-----Original Message-----

>Brian Algers in his weblog 'Network learning environments' to the
>book Connected Intelligence, by Derrick de Kerckhove (1997). See :


"chris macrae" <>

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