Sociology and the New Systems Theory

Toward a Theoretical Synthesis

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Author: Kenneth D. Bailey

Publisher: SUNY Press

ISBN: 9780791417430

Category: Social Science

Page: 372

View: 2632

After providing a review of classical theory, this book carefully sketches the chief contributions of living systems theory, social entropy theory, autopoiesis, and other approaches. It shows that these approaches are without flaws of earlier functionalism, yet they retain the breadth and integrative potential needed by mainstream theorists concerned about the threat of hyperspecialization and fragmentation within sociology.

Understanding College and University Organization

Theories for Effective Policy and Practice

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Author: James L. Bess,Jay R. Dee

Publisher: Stylus Publishing, LLC

ISBN: 1579227732

Category: Education

Page: 506

View: 1385

Now available in paperback, this two-volume work is intended to help readers develop powerful new ways of thinking about organizational principles, and apply them to policy-making and management in colleges and universities. The book is written with two audiences in mind: administrative and faculty leaders in institutions of higher learning, and students (both doctoral and Master's degree) studying to become upper-level administrators, leaders, and policy makers in higher education. It systematically presents a range of theories that can be applied to many of the difficult management situations that college and university leaders encounter. It provides them with the theoretical background to knowledgeably evaluate the many new ideas that emerge in the current literature, and in workshops and conferences. The purpose is to help leaders develop their own effective management style and approaches, and feel confident that their actions are informed by appropriate theory and knowledge of the latest research in the field. Without theory, organizational leaders are forced to treat each problem that they encounter as unique–as if it were a first-time occurrence. While leaders may have some experience with a particular issue, their solutions are usually not informed by the accumulated wisdom of others who have already encountered and resolved similar situations. The authors approach the theory of the organization and administration of colleges and universities from three quite different perspectives, or paradigms, each relying on different assumptions about the “reality” of organizational life in colleges and universities. The positivist paradigm–primarily an omnibus systems theory–integrates the chapters into a comprehensive, yet easily accessible whole. Social constructionism, the second paradigm, is introduced in each chapter to illuminate the difficulty of seeking and finding meaningful consensus on problems and policies, while also addressing important ethical issues that tend to be overlooked in leadership thought and action. The third paradigm, postmodernism, draws attention to difficulties of logic and communication under the constraints of strictly linear thinking that “authorities” at all levels attempt to impose on organizations. This “multiple paradigm” approach enables readers to become more cognizant of their own assumptions, how they may differ from those of others in their organization, and how those differences may both create difficulties in resolving problems and expand the range of alternatives considered in organizational decision making. The book offers readers the tools to balance the real-world needs to succeed in today’s challenging and competitive environment with the social and ethical aspirations of all its stakeholders and society at large. The authors’ aim is to elucidate how administration can be made more efficient and effective through rational decision-making while also respecting humanistic values. This approach highlights a range of phenomena that require attention if the institution is ultimately to be considered successful.

Sociology and Complexity Science

A New Field of Inquiry

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Author: Brian Castellani,Frederic William Hafferty

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 3540884629

Category: Science

Page: 277

View: 3357

By now, most academics have heard something about the new science of complexity. In a manner reminiscent of Einstein and the last hundred years of physics, complexity science has captured the public imagination. ® One can go to Amazon. com and purchase books on complexification (Casti 1994), emergence (Holland 1998), small worlds (Barabási 2003), the web of life (Capra 1996), fuzzy thinking (Kosko 1993), global c- plexity (Urry 2003) and the business of long-tails (Anderson 2006). Even television has incorporated the topics of complexity science. Crime shows ® ® such as 24 or CSI typically feature investigators using the latest advances in computational modeling to “simulate scenarios” or “data mine” all p- sible suspects—all of which is done before the crime takes place. The ® World Wide Web is another example. A simple search on Google. Com using the phrase “complexity science” gets close to a million hits! C- plexity science is ubiquitous. What most scholars do not realize, however, is the remarkable role sociologists are playing in this new science. C- sider the following examples. 0. 1 Sociologists in Complexity Science The first example comes from the new science of networks (Barabási 2003). By now, most readers are familiar with the phenomena known as six-degrees of separation—the idea that, because most large networks are comprised of a significant number of non-random weak-ties, the nodes (e. g. , people, companies, etc.

Handbook of Sociological Theory

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Author: Jonathan H. Turner

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 0387324585

Category: Political Science

Page: 745

View: 4800

This wide-ranging handbook presents in-depth discussions on the array of subspecialties that comprise the field of sociological theory. Prominent theorists working in a variety of traditions discuss methodologies and strategies; the cultural turn in sociological theorizing; interaction processes; theorizing from the systemic and macro level; new directions in evolutionary theorizing; power, conflict, and change; and theorizing from assumptions of rationality.

The Dynamics and Evolution of Social Systems

New Foundations of a Mathematical Sociology

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Author: Jürgen Klüver

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9401595704

Category: Philosophy

Page: 292

View: 7507

When I started with this book several years ago I originally intended to write an introduction to mathematical systems theory for social scientists. Yet the more I thought about systems theory on the one side and theoretical sociology on the other the more I became convinced that the classical mathematical tools are not very well suited for the problems of sociology. Then I became acquainted with the researches on complex systems by the Santa Fe Institute and in particular with cellular automata, Boolean networks and genetic algorithms. These mathematically very simple but extremely efficient tools are, in my opinion, very well appropriate for modeling social dynamics. Therefore I tried to reformulate several classical problems of theoretical sociology in terms of these formal systems and outline new possibilities for a mathematical sociology which is able to join immediately on the great traditions of theoretical sociology. The result is this book; whether I succeeded with it is of course up to the readers. As the readers will perceive, the book could not have been written by me alone but only by the joint labors of the computer group at the Interdisciplinary Center of Research in Higher Education at the University of Essen. The members of the group, Christina Stoica, Jom Schmidt and Ralph Kier, are named in several subchapters as co-authors. Yet even more important than their contributions to this book were the permanent discussions with them and their patience with my new and very speculative ideas. Many thanks.

The Broadview Pocket Guide to Citation and Documentation

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Author: Maureen Okun

Publisher: Broadview Press

ISBN: 1460402685

Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

Page: 120

View: 8657

Compact and convenient, The Broadview Pocket Guide to Citation and Documentation includes information on MLA, APA, Chicago, and CSE styles of citation and documentation. Based on the “Documentation” chapter in the acclaimed Broadview Guide to Writing, this volume has been expanded with additional examples and has been fully updated to cover recent changes such as the new MLA guidelines for citing tweets. There is also expanded coverage of plagiarism (and how to avoid it).

Systems Theory and the Sociology of Health and Illness

Observing Healthcare

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Author: Morten Knudsen,Werner Vogd

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1317637593

Category: Social Science

Page: 240

View: 8340

Modern societies and organizations are characterized by multiple kinds of observations, systems, or rationalities, rather than singular identities and clear hierarchies. This holds true for healthcare where we find a range of different perspectives – from medicine to education, from science to law, from religion to politics – brought together in different types of arrangements. This innovative volume explores how this polycontexturality plays out in the healthcare arena. Drawing on systems theory, and Luhmann’s theory of social systems as communicative systems in particular, the contributors investigate how things – drugs, for example – and bodies are observed and constructed in different ways under polycontextural conditions. They explore how the different types of communication and observation are brought into workable arrangements – without becoming identical or reconciled – and discuss how health care organizations observe their own polycontexturality. Providing an analysis of healthcare structures that is up to speed with the complexity of healthcare today, this book shows how society and its organizations simultaneously manage contexts that do not fit together. It is an important work for those with an interest in health and illness, social theory, Niklas Luhmann, organizations and systems theory from a range of backgrounds including sociology, health studies, political science and management.

The shaping of social organization

social rule system theory with applications

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Author: Tom R. Burns,Helena Flam

Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd

ISBN: N.A

Category: Science

Page: 432

View: 7006

One of the Finalists for the 1987 European Prize for the Best Book in Sociology and Social Science The Shaping of Social Organizations introduces a new theory--social rule system theory--and applies it to the analysis of major institutions of modern social life. The book presents social rule system theory as a framework with which to investigate these institutions. It clarifies the principles behind their formation, maintenance, and transformation. The book draws on a wide range of case studies: from artificial insemination to energy forecasting and administration. It provides insights into wage negotiation systems, the emergence of informal rule systems, and the multiple sources of social and structural incoherence in modern societies. It advances a distinctive approach to the study of actor-structure dynamics, placing itself in a scholarly tradition developed by major thinkers such as Weber, Giddens, and Harrq. "A book of extraordinary scope. It provides a unified theory of human activities, including not only politics and economics, but also 'science, art or everyday life'. . . . The applications are complex and rich and fit neatly into theory." --American Journal of Sociology "A book of extraordinary scope." --Amitai Etzoni, George Washington University "Changes our concepts and ways of thinking about social action." --Organizational Studies "An original contribution to the theory of social organization." --International Review of Sociology "Valuable reading for theorists, empirical researchers, and all interested in the working of contemporary societies . . . rich empirical foundations, and diverse applications." --Piotr Sztompka "Every topic . . . in this book turns into sociological gold." --Hans Zetterberg "Burns and Flam have written an important innovative work. The volume was among the finalists for the Amalfi European prize in Sociology and Social Science." --The American Sociological Association Organizations and Occupations Newsletter

Luhmann Observed

Radical Theoretical Encounters

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Author: Anders La Cour

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137015292

Category: Philosophy

Page: 295

View: 5574

This book, for the first time, brings Niklas Luhmann's work into dialogue with other theoretical positions, including Lacan, Derrida, Deleuze, gender studies, bioethics, translation, ANT, eco-theories and complexity theory.

Sociological Theory and the Environment

Classical Foundations, Contemporary Insights

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Author: Riley E. Dunlap

Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield

ISBN: 9780742501867

Category: Social Science

Page: 357

View: 4667

This comprehensive survey and assessment of sociological theories of the relations between societies and their 'natural' biophysical environment touches on and addresses virtually all of the major perspectives, focal points, and debates in environmental sociology today. At the same time, the book aims to go beyond an inventory of environmental sociological theory by stressing how new ground can be broken in the articulation of environmental sociology with major classical and contemporary sociological theories.

The Social Construction of Technological Systems

New Directions in the Sociology and History of Technology

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Author: Wiebe E. Bijker,Thomas P. Hughes,Trevor Pinch,Deborah G. Douglas

Publisher: MIT Press

ISBN: 0262300877

Category: Technology & Engineering

Page: 472

View: 9776

This pioneering book, first published in 1987, launched the new field of social studies of technology. It introduced a method of inquiry--social construction of technology, or SCOT--that became a key part of the wider discipline of science and technology studies. The book helped the MIT Press shape its STS list and inspired the Inside Technology series. The thirteen essays in the book tell stories about such varied technologies as thirteenth-century galleys, eighteenth-century cooking stoves, and twentieth-century missile systems. Taken together, they affirm the fruitfulness of an approach to the study of technology that gives equal weight to technical, social, economic, and political questions, and they demonstrate the illuminating effects of the integration of empirics and theory. The approaches in this volume--collectively called SCOT (after the volume's title) have since broadened their scope, and twenty-five years after the publication of this book, it is difficult to think of a technology that has not been studied from a SCOT perspective and impossible to think of a technology that cannot be studied that way.

Soziale Systeme

Grundriss einer allgemeinen Theorie

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Author: Niklas Luhmann

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: N.A

Category: Psychology

Page: 674

View: 5513

Law and Social Theory

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Author: Reza Banakar,Max Travers

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1782252045

Category: Law

Page: 378

View: 1029

There is a growing interest within law schools in the intersections between law and different areas of social theory. The second edition of this popular text introduces a wide range of traditions in sociology and the humanities that offer provocative, contextual views on law and legal institutions. The book is organised into six sections, each with an introduction by the editors, on classical sociology of law, systems theory, critical approaches, law in action, postmodernism, and law in global society. Each chapter is written by a specialist who reviews the literature, and discusses how the approach can be used in researching different topics. New chapters include authoritative reviews of actor network theory, new legal realism, critical race theory, post-colonial theories of law, and the sociology of the legal profession. Over half the chapters are new, and the rest are revised in order to include discussion of recent literature.

The Globalization and Development Reader

Perspectives on Development and Global Change

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Author: J. Timmons Roberts,Amy Bellone Hite,Nitsan Chorev

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 1118735382

Category: Political Science

Page: 632

View: 4994

This revised and updated second edition of The Globalizationand Development Reader builds on the considerable success of afirst edition that has been used around the world. It combinesselected readings and editorial material to provide a coherent textwith global coverage, reflecting new theoretical and empiricaldevelopments. Main text and core reference for students and professionalsstudying the processes of social change and development in“third world” countries. Carefully excerpted materialsfacilitate the understanding of classic and contemporarywritings Second edition includes 33 essential readings, including 21 newselections New pieces cover the impact of the recession in the globalNorth, global inequality and uneven development, gender,international migration, the role of cities, agriculture and on thegovernance of pharmaceuticals and climate change politics Increased coverage of China and India help to provide genuinelyglobal coverage, and for a student readership the materials havebeen subject to a higher degree of editing in the new edition Includes a general introduction to the field, and short,insightful section introductions to each reading New readings include selections by Alexander Gershenkron, AliceAmsden, Amartya Sen, Anne-Marie Slaughter, Cecile Jackson, DaniRodrik, David Harvey, Greta Krippner, Kathryn Sikkink, LeslieSklair, Margaret E. Keck, Michael Burawoy, Nitsan Chorev, OscarLewis, Patrick Bond, Peter Evans, Philip McMichael, Pranab Bardhan,Ruth Pearson, Sarah Babb, Saskia Sassen, and Steve Radelet

Addressing Modernity

Social Systems Theory and U.S. Cultures

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Author: Hannes Bergthaller,Carsten Schinko

Publisher: Rodopi

ISBN: 9042032588

Category: History

Page: 366

View: 2615

Niklas LuhmannOCOs theory of social systems is one of the most ambitious attempts to create a coherent account of global modernity. Primarily interested in the fundamental structures of modern society, however, Luhmann himself paid relatively little attention to regional variations. The aim of this book is to seek out modernity in one particular location: The United States of America. Gathering essays from a group of cultural and literary scholars, sociologists, and philosophers, Addressing Modernity reassesses the claims of American exceptionalism by setting them in the context of LuhmannOCOs conception of modernity, and explores how social systems theory can generate new perspectives on what has often been described as the first thoroughly modern nation. As a study of American society and culture from a Luhmannian vantage point, the book is of interest to scholars from both American Studies and social systems theory in general."

Rule Systems Theory

Applications and Explorations

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Author: Helena Flam,Marcus Carson

Publisher: Peter Lang

ISBN: 9783631575963

Category: Social Science

Page: 316

View: 6372

Explaining the complexity of social life remains the central challenge of the social sciences. This book offers a variety of theoretical-empirical explorations and applications inspired by an important neo-institutional approach to tackling this complexity - the rule systems theory. Its point of departure is the assumption that institutions and cultural formations possess causal powers and relative autonomy, constraining and enabling people’s social actions and interactions. Structural and cultural properties of society are carried by, transmitted, and reformed by human agents whose interactions generate, reproduce, elaborate and transform structures. The contributors are highly accomplished economists, sociologists and political scientists who come from the US and several European countries. The book is meant as a Festschrift for Tom Burns, a central figure in the development of the rule systems theory.

Theory and Method in Socio-Legal Research

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Author: Reza Banakar,Max Travers

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1847316913

Category: Law

Page: 392

View: 6781

Socio-legal researchers increasingly recognise the need to employ a wide variety of methods in studying law and legal phenomena, and the need to be informed by an understanding of debates about theory and method in mainstream social science. The papers in this volume illustrate how a range of topics, including EU law, ombudsmen, judges, lawyers, Shariah Councils and the quality assurance industry can be researched from a socio-legal perspective. The objective of the collection is to show how different methods can be used in researching law and legal phenomena, how methodological issues and debates in sociology are relevant to the study of law, and the importance of the debate between "structural" and "action" traditions in researching law. It also approaches the methodological problem of how sociology of law can address the content of legal practice from a variety of perspectives and discusses the relationship between pure and applied research. The editors provide a critical introduction to each of the six sections, and a general introduction on law, sociology and method. The collection will provide an invaluable resource for socio-legal researchers, law school researchers and postgraduates.

Theoretical Thinking in Sociology

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Author: William Skidmore

Publisher: CUP Archive

ISBN: 9780521296069

Category: Social Science

Page: 271

View: 6292

Sociological theory has typically been studied in three types of courses: history of sociological thought, modern sociological perspectives, and philosophy of science. Theoretical Thinking in Sociology is a book that combines all three of these approaches and covers four main themes in sociological theory - exchange theory, functionalism, symbolic interaction and ethnomethodology. Although each theory takes a different approach to the task of explaining social order, all are presented with an emphasis on theoretical thinking. In addition to outlining these theories, the author describes in detail the theoretical problems faced by leading sociological theorists and their solutions to them, and presents theory as a creative intellectual development. The book reviews significant problems from the history of theory in sociology, and discusses research literature and the relationship of this research to its theoretical field. Each chapter of this 1979 second edition ends with a summary, topics for discussion, essay questions, and suggestions for further reading.

Polish Essays in the Methodology of the Social Sciences

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Author: J. Wiatr

Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media

ISBN: 9400993536

Category: Science

Page: 271

View: 2088

Modern philosophy has benefited immensely from the intelligence, and sensitivity, the creative and critical energies, and the lucidity of Polish scholars. Their investigations into the logical and methodological foundations of mathematics, the physical and biological sciences, ethics and esthetics, psychology, linguistics, economics and jurisprudence, and the social science- all are marked by profound and imaginative work. To the centers of empiricist philosophy of science in Vienna, Berlin and Cambridge during the first half of this century, one always added the great school of analytic and methodol ogical studies in Warsaw and Lwow. To the world centers of Marxist theoretical practice in Berlin, Moscow, Paris, Rome and elsewhere, one must add the Poland of the same era, from Ludwik Krzywicki (1859-1941) onward. American socialists and economists will remember the careful work of Oscar Lange, working among us for many years and then after 1945 in Warsaw, always humane, logical, objective. In this volume, our friend and colleague, Jerzy J. Wiatr, has assembled a representative set of recent essays by Polish social scientists and philosophers. Each of these might lead the reader far beyond this book, to look into the Polish Sociological Bulletin which has been publishing Polish sociological studies in English for several decades, to study other translations of books and papers by these authors, and to reflect upon the interplay of logical, phenomenological, Marxist, empiricist and historical learning in modern Polish social understanding.

The New Human in Literature

Posthuman Visions of Changes in Body, Mind and Society after 1900

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Author: Mads Rosendahl Thomsen

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1441114068

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 256

View: 7964

Twentieth-century literature changed understandings of what it meant to be human. Mads Rosendahl Thomsen, in this historical overview, presents a record of literature's changing ideas of mankind, questioning the degree to which literature records and creates visions of the new human. Grounded in the theory of Niklas Luhmann and drawing on canonical works, Thomsen uses literary changes in the mind, body and society to define the new human. He begins with the modernist minds of Virginia Woolf, Williams Carlos Williams and Louis-Ferdinand Celine's, discusses the society-changing concepts envisioned by Chinua Achebe, Mo Yan and Orhan Pamuk. He concludes with science fiction, discussing Don DeLillo and Michel Houellebecq's ideas of revolutionizing man through biotechnology. This is a study about imagination, aesthetics and ethics that demonstrates literature's capacity to not only imagine the future but portray the conflicting desires between individual and various collectives better than any other media. A study that heightens reflections on human evolution and posthumanism.