File spoon-archives/bourdieu.archive/bourdieu_1999/bourdieu.9905, message 80

Date: Sun, 23 May 1999 01:36:03 -0500
Subject: We Missed You in march, But ...

NECSI's many activities linking the study of complex systems and the management
of organizations are blossoming


"I spent a lot of years trying to figure out where the axiomatic
coherent science was behind complexity. What I believe now instead is that it's
not a science. It is a syndrome and a collection of metaphors. Now, it may at
some time become a science or it may not, or maybe science will become a kind 
open system like that." - Glenda Eoyang

"So, what we're saying is that businesses are complex adaptive systems.
The word metaphor has been used a lot yesterday. It's always used a lot in the
business of context. Metaphors like, business is like the battlefield or the
sports field -- those are metaphors. We're not dealing with a metaphor here,
because businesses are complex, adaptive systems." - Birute Regine

"Because the Holy Grail, as Gary Hamel has pointed out, in strategy is
to figure out how strategy actually gets created. That's the dirty little secret
of strategy. Nobody knows how it happens. Henry Mintzberg said it's by accident;
it emergent. But that's not good enough. We need to get beyond it's just an
accident; it's luck; it's emergence; it's visionary; it's serendipity, blah,
blah, blah."  - Robin Wood

"You recognize the style. There's been two sort of thoughts, streams of
thought in literature and in practice. One says that yes, you have to go
out and you have to analyze; you have to pick things apart and understand it.
This is the kind of analytical thing, and if we're really sophisticated we call
it strategic analysis. And consultant companies are great at this, and our MBAs
are really good at it. Our MBAs can do an industry analysis in 35 seconds, and
there we are." - Johan Roos

"I would like to quickly suggest that if we care about complexity and
using it in a rigorous way and proving that it can be used in a rigorous
way and gaining some value from it, that these are a couple killer aps that we
can start thinking about." - Thomas Petzinger, Jr.

Managing the Complex (MTC) may have been only a four day event in March but
NECSI is pleased to announce that the event lives on .. on the web.
The quotes above are but a sample.  There are also discussion groups available 
and a Complexity bookstore.

Please join us at: http://www.Proceedings.Net/MTC/


Our new journal:  Emergence: A Journal of Complexity Issues in Organizations 
and Management has appeared in print!!

See the web site:
Subscriptions are available from

We are seeking articles submissions for issues 4, 5, and 6  (Winter 1999 to
Spring 2000). 

The next issue will feature a review of the many books now
available on complexity and management.  Coming this summer.


NECSI and the Academy of Management are sponsoring a full day workshop
Complexity and Management -- Two Interacting Sciences?,
August 7, in Chicago at the AoM annual meeting.

Please see for more details


On a personal note:  

John Seely Brown called it: "Mind expanding. Beautifully
written. Finally, a book that sees to the core of complex adaptive systems,
revealing new ways to "see" the world and to lead"

The Next Common Sense: Mastering Corporate Complexity Through Coherence is
summarized and available through
along with added material about coherence, complexity, and management


MTC has a health care workshop planned for October, and two conferences planned
in Japan (September and November) email me for more details

Michael Lissack <>
Director, Organization Science Related Programs,
New England Complex Systems Institute
24 Mount Auburn St, Suite #2, Cambridge MA 02138
Editor-in-Chief, Emergence: A Journal of Complexity Issues
In Organizations and Management
32 Garrison Street, Apartment #50-104, Boston MA 02116,,
phone 617-536-4109 fax -- 617-249-0663
32 Garrison Street, Apartment #50-104, Boston MA 02116
phone 617-536-4109 fax -- 212-208-4349


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