Adventures in Complexity: For Organisations Near the Edge of Chaos - Lesley Kuhn; | Foyles Bookstore
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Adventures in Complexity: For Organisations Near the Edge of Chaos
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Adventures in Complexity: For Organisations Near the Edge of Chaos (Paperback)

£20.00
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Synopsis

A complexity approach removes simplistic hopes of an ordered and controllable existence where, if only we had the right 'keys' or 'tools', we would be able to fashion a successful organisation. Instead, it offers a way to identify underlying patterns of order and indicators for influencing future sustainable practice; it shows how simple recurrent rules result in complex behaviour and that 'influential interventions' do not take a neat cause-and-effect path but may generate unexpected outcomes. In this engaging and thought-provoking book, Lesley Kuhn introduces the principles of complexity theory in a clear, concise and accessible way through discussion of those concepts and metaphors that are most useful in understanding organisational life. This provides an excellent foundation from which to apply these principles to organisations and much of the book is dedicated to complexity in practice.

Through case studies and practical examples of a complexity style analysis of seven organisations, from a not-for-profit to a large pharmaceutical company, we are taken on an adventure in the use of this sophisticated way of thinking, and shown how to evaluate what influences the health of an organisation and the emergence of future sustainable practice. There is further guidance in how to use complexity - a list of the type of questions that are useful as a starting point for an inquiry, and an action list for managers or leaders who want to enhance organisational opportunities. For leaders, managers, and everyone who works in or for an organisation, here at last is a straightforward and immediately practical way of applying what may seem like a complicated theory. For academics, researchers and students who may be theorising in a vacuum, this is a much-needed book to show how complexity theory can be translated into the workplace. "Complexity" offers a fresh lens through which to view the 'life' of organisations, described by Kuhn as 'collectives of human activity'.

She gives a new perspective on organisational processes and practices, a way to change how we engage at both a local and global level. This is vital if we are not to repeat the mistakes, driven in part by current standard organisational practice, that have led to the present, potentially catastrophic, situation.

BusinessBusiness & managementOrganizational theory & behaviour Publisher: Triarchy Press Publication Date: 10/06/2009 ISBN-13: 9780956263100  Details: Type: Paperback Format: Books
Availability: Not currently available to order online.  

Lesley Kuhn is Senior Lecturer in the College of Business at the University of Western Sydney, Australia. For 14 years prior to this she worked at the Social Ecology Centre, an innovative postgraduate oriented transdisciplinary Centre that brought an integral perspective on the self, nature and society and has been active in bringing complexity habits of thought to philosophical and social inquiry and in developing complexity informed ethnographic research approaches. She is author of more than 40 book chapters and published papers and has led more than 30 research projects as well as being the Guest Editor for special double issue of the prestigious Journal, World Futures: The Journal of General Evolution, that was dedicated to showcasing the work of UWS academics in bringing complexity informed approaches to social inquiry. She is a master of transdisciplinary thinking, with degrees in music, education and environmental science and a doctorate in philosophy. Her hopes are for a tolerant, democratic and egalitarian society where people are aware of how they are structured and categorised by social and cultural dictates, ideologies and the declarations of those who think they have a monopoly on what is right and should be known. She is passionate about protecting and promoting flexibility and freedom of mind and soul along with a capacity for trust, wonder and hope.

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