[p2p-research] Building Alliances (action research)

Paul D. Fernhout pdfernhout at kurtz-fernhout.com
Sat Nov 7 17:42:12 CET 2009

Well, I hope good mathematically-related simulations could help in 
understanding issue or persuading people or developing better designs. :-)
"[p2p-research] FOSS modeling tools "

But, on your point, here is something my wife has been involved with 
"Action research is a reflective process of progressive problem solving led 
by individuals working with others in teams or as part of a "community of 
practice" to improve the way they address issues and solve problems. Action 
research can also be undertaken by larger organizations or institutions, 
assisted or guided by professional researchers, with the aim of improving 
their strategies, practices, and knowledge of the environments within which 
they practice. As designers and stakeholders, researchers work with others 
to propose a new course of action to help their community improve its work 
practices (Center for Collaborative Action Research). Kurt Lewin, then a 
professor at MIT, first coined the term “action research” in about 1944, and 
it appears in his 1946 paper “Action Research and Minority Problems”. In 
that paper, he described action research as “a comparative research on the 
conditions and effects of various forms of social action and research 
leading to social action” that uses “a spiral of steps, each of which is 
composed of a circle of planning, action, and fact-finding about the result 
of the action”."

So, she'd probably agree with you. :-)

For clarity, I was the one who mentioned cultural accumulation that Andrew 
commented one, though I agree with your point on that. I don't think one can 
so easily separate domain knowledge from analytical/synthetic ability, in 
terms of effectivenesses at building happy communities. A related essay:
   "Examsmanship and the Liberal Arts"

Some discussion by me: :-)
"Examsmanship, Cattle, and Deep Springs"
"And here is a way to fit free licensing and reputation into the analogy. If
cow is Wiki articles, and bull is thinking about metadata and Semantic
tagging and an ontology (via RDF or whatever), and the Wiki is the pasture,
then what is free licensing and the reputation of the licensor? They are
analogous to statements like "certified organic" or "certified humane
slaughter" (oxymoron?) or "certified free of mad cow disease". So, when you
get the materials, you know the cows and bulls were well fed, well treated,
well killed, and are safe to eat (use in derivative works).(*) "

--Paul Fernhout

Michel Bauwens wrote:
> Just to make this clear: I am not confusing, accumulated information, with
> increased collective intelligence.
> There is both a dynamic in terms of individual adult development, with
> increased capacities to handle cognitive complexity, there's a whole field
> of psychology dedicated to this, and collective intelligence, which is the
> capacity to cooperate as intelligent beings.
> Both are not given fixed amounts, but amenable to change, and there is a
> case to be made that they have been growing.
> I gather you are not aware that there are other modalities of knowing than
> math? and that being good at math is a free pass to pass on judgments on all
> matters in the universe? For a good case of mathematical madness, take
> neoclassical economics. It's pretty clear where that got us. I think that
> applying math to social change is a serious category error, and not
> 'rigorous' at all. Social change can only be examined in a interdisciplinary
> and participatory way.
> Last, social change must not be proven in theory, but experimented in
> practice. Lots of things were impossible in theory, like the Wikipedia and
> the Arduino, but happened in practice. In that case, theory must be revised,
> but above all, one must be aware of the relativity of theory at all times.
> Michel
> On Sat, Nov 7, 2009 at 1:35 PM, J. Andrew Rogers <reality.miner at gmail.com>wrote:
>> On Fri, Nov 6, 2009 at 9:19 PM, Michel Bauwens <michelsub2004 at gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>> Another view is that talent is distributed in many ways, and so our
>> systems
>>> need to be more distributed to capture that innovation and contribution,
>> as
>>> that is not sufficiently done at present.
>> This is true, but you are not understanding why it is true or the
>> nature of that system. I take it no one here is a big fan of math?
>>> So to challenge Andrew's very clear metaphysics:
>> I have metaphysics? Does my mother know?
>>> 1) people can get smarter, and in many ways are getting smarter, through
>>> smart educational and social policies
>> People are not becoming more intelligent. However, they are using
>> their intelligence more efficiently, which is consistent with theory.
>>> 2) the intelligence we have is increasing in value, the more so if we
>>> interconnected people and their contributions in collective intelligence
>>> systems; there is a network effect to human intelligence deployed in this
>>> social and distributed way
>> Intelligence is not a synonym for information. Consequently the above
>> does not make sense unless you use correct terminology.
>>> 3) intelligence is incredibly addictive, all human knowledge builds on
>>> previous one, and recombines in myriad ways to create more and more
>>> additional intelligence
>> Whatever you are talking about, it is not "intelligence".
>>> I also note that in a world where myriad social problems are showing up
>> and
>>> increasing, the system you propose, in your own words, is incapable of
>>> investing in it.
>> Sure. I'm not big on reality denial. However, you have not proposed an
>> alternative that does not have the same properties.
>>> Time to move on then perhaps, and let others take over the work of
>> investing
>>> in the common good?
>> Well that's the problem now, isn't it?  I'm waiting for someone to
>> propose a way to do that which passes basic critical muster, but there
>> hasn't been much beyond handwaving.  I've been working on this problem
>> for years, but from a slightly more rigorous perspective.
>>> The good news is that for people who are willing to
>>> invest in the social good, it is not actually a hard problem, and
>>> opportunities abound. This is why there is now a thriving field of social
>>> enterpreneurship, blended capital, and social venture investing, while
>> the
>>> VC world is in crisis.
>> We can't meaningfully solve these problems if we pretend fundamental
>> problems with the proposals don't exist. I've heard all these happy
>> proposals before, because I used to work with NGOs on designing
>> sustainable systems and international protocols of this type. We
>> initially made the same naive mistakes then that are being made here
>> now.
>> plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose

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