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Determinism Holism And Complexity

Author: Claudio Pellegrini
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 1475749473
Size: 33.65 MB
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Determinism, holism and complexity: three epistemological attitudes that have easily identifiable historical origins and developments. Galileo believed that it was necessary to "prune the impediments" to extract the mathematical essence of physical phenomena, to identify the math ematical structures representing the underlying laws. This Galilean method was the key element in the development of Physics, with its extraordinary successes. Nevertheless the method was later criticized because it led to a view of nature as essentially "simple and orderly", and thus by choosing not to investigate several charac teristics considered as an "impediment", several essential aspects of the phenomenon under investigation might be left out. The Galilean point of view also contains an acknowledgement of the central role played by the causal nexus among phenomena. The mechanistic-deterministic de scription of reality - for instance, a la Laplace - although acknowledging that it is not possible to predict phenomena exactly owing to unavoid able measurement error, is based on the recognition of the their causal nature, even in an ontological sense. Consequently, deterministic predic tion became the methodological fulcrum of mathematical physics. But although mechanistic determinism has had and, in many cases, still has, considerable success in Physics, in other branches of science this situa tion is much less favourable.

Complexity And Creative Capacity

Author: Kelly Chapman
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317398149
Size: 78.47 MB
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Complexity theories gained prominence in the 1990s with a focus on self-organising and complex adaptive systems. Since then, complexity theory has become one of the fastest growing topics in both the natural and social sciences, and touted as a revolutionary way of understanding the behaviour of complex systems. This book uses complexity theory to surface and challenge the deeply held cultural assumptions that shape how we think about reality and knowledge. In doing so it shows how our traditional approaches to generating and applying knowledge may be paradoxically exacerbating some of the ‘wicked’ environmental problems we are currently facing. The author proposes an innovative and compelling argument for rejecting old constructs of knowledge transfer, adaptive management and adaptive capacity. The book also presents a distinctively coherent and comprehensive synthesis of cognition, learning, knowledge and organizing from a complexity perspective. It concludes with a reconceptualization of the problem of knowledge transfer from a complexity perspective, proposing the concept of creative capacity as an alternative to adaptive capacity as a measure of resilience in socio-ecological systems. Although written from an environmental management perspective, it is relevant to the broader natural sciences and to a range of other disciplines, including knowledge management, organizational learning, organizational management, and the philosophy of science.

Complexity And Emergence

Author: Academie Internationale De Philosophie D
Publisher: World Scientific
ISBN: 9789812381583
Size: 33.88 MB
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Complexity has become a central topic in certain sectors of theoretical physics and chemistry (for example, in connection with nonlinearity and deterministic chaos). Also, mathematical measurements of complexity and formal characterizations of this notion have been proposed. The question of how complex systems can show properties that are different from those of their constituent parts has nurtured philosophical debates about emergence and reductionism, which are particularly important in the study of the relationship between physics, chemistry, biology and psychology. This book offers a good presentation of those topics through a truly interdisciplinary approach in which the philosophy of science and the specialized topics of certain sciences are put in a dialogue.

Complexity Science And Society

Author: Jan Bogg
Publisher: CRC Press
ISBN: 1315347032
Size: 28.81 MB
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'The following sections are a very good representation of the core developments of complexity thinking in a number of major fields. Our intention is to provide an accessible interdisciplinary introduction to the wonderful intellectual breadth that complexity can offer.' - Jan Bogg and Robert Geyer in the Introduction. Complexity is a new and exciting interdisciplinary approach to science and society that challenges traditional academic divisions, frameworks and paradigms. This book helps the expert, student or policy practitioner have a better understanding of the enormous potential of complexity, and how it relates to their particular area of interest or expertise. It provides excellent representations of the core developments of complexity thinking in a number of major fields. "Complexity, Science and Society" brings together an unrivalled selection of new applications of complexity from leading experts across subjects including medicine and healthcare, education, public policy and social theory, ecology, philosophy, international politics, the arts, modelling and design, and others. Together they offer an unprecedented review of the latest developments. This book is an accessible interdisciplinary introduction to the wonderful intellectual breadth that complexity can offer.

Into Complexity

Author: Cornelis Pieters
Publisher: Universal-Publishers
ISBN: 1599423057
Size: 64.55 MB
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The NWO-programme "the societal aspects of genomics", has called for stronger means of collaboration and deliberative involvement between the various stakeholders of genomics research. Within the project group assembled at the UH, this call was translated to the 'lingua democratica', in which the prerequisites of such deliberative efforts were put to scrutiny. The contribution of this thesis has taken a more or less abstract angle to this task, and sought to develop a vocabulary that can be shared amongst various stakeholders with different backgrounds, interests and stakes for any complex theme, although genomics has more or less been in focus throughout the research. As 'complexity thinking' is currently a theme in both the 'hard' sciences as the social sciences and the humanities, and has always been an issue for professionals, this concept was pivotal in achieving such an inclusive angle. However, in order to prevent that complexity would become fragmented due to disciplinary boundaries, it is essential that those aspects of complexity that seem to return in many discussions would be made clear, and stand out with respect to the complexities of specialisation. The thesis has argued that the concept of 'patterns' applies for these aspects, and they form the backbone of the vocabulary that has been developed. Especially patterns of feedback have been given much attention, as this concept is pivotal for many complex themes. However, although patterns are implicitly or explicitly used in many areas, there is little methodological (and philosophical) underpinning of what they are and why they are able to do what they do. As a result, quite some attention has been given to these issues, and how they relate to concepts such as 'information', 'order' and complexity itself. From these explorations, the actual vocabulary was developed, including the methodological means to use this vocabulary. This has taken the shape of a recursive development of a so-called pattern-library, which has crossed disciplinary boundaries, from technological areas, through biology, psychology and the social sciences, to a topic that is typical of the humanities. This journey across the divide of C.P. Snow s 'two cultures' is both a test for a lingua democratica, as well as aimed to demonstrate how delicate, and balanced such a path must be in order to be effective, especially if one aims to retain certain coherence along the way. Finally, the methodology has been applied in a very practical way, to a current development that hinges strongly on research in genomics, which is trans-humanist movement.

Complex Policy Planning

Author: Philip Haynes
Publisher: Ashgate Publishing
ISBN: 9781840148183
Size: 44.81 MB
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An examination of recent developments in the use of chaos and complexity theory in the applied social sciences and of the implications for government planning of social care services.

Evaluating The Complex

Author: Kim Forss
Publisher: Transaction Publishers
ISBN: 1412845440
Size: 23.84 MB
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In the economic atmosphere following the crisis of 2008, not only have governments reacted by creating more complex policy initiatives, but they have also promised that all of these initiatives will be evaluated. Due to the complexity of many of the initiatives, the ways of evaluating are becoming equally complex. The book begins with a theoretical and conceptual explanation of the process and shows how this translates into the practice of evaluation. The chapters cover a wide variety of subjects, such as poverty, homelessness, smoking prevention, HIV/AIDS, and child labor. The use of case studies sheds light on the conceptual ideas at work in organizations addressing some of the world’s largest and most varied problems. The evaluation process seeks a balance between order and chaos. The interaction of four elements—simplicity, inventiveness, flexibility, and specificity—allows complex patterns to emerge. The case studies illustrate this framework and provide a number of examples of practical management of complexity, in light of contingency theories of the evaluation process itself. These theories in turn match the complexity of evaluated policies, strategies, and programs. The evaluation process is examined for its impact on policy outcomes and choices.