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Which clippings match 'Good Company' keyword pg.1 of 1
08 JUNE 2009

Managing Complexity from Chaos: Uncertainty, Knowledge and Skills

"Complexity, thus, is a complicated and intertwined process. It includes many layers of time and experience. The core of complexity is not something secret, not something never to be known, nor is it (unto itself) a difficulty or a problem. Complexity is not inherently obscurist. But at its core there is freedom of action and the openness of possibility, which we have called 'the infinite empty space.' Organization creates a home (abri) and the road to it leads through the uncanny, through the 'unfamiliar other ... [to] the future [which] is radically open–ended and, as such, ... may surprise us' (Tsoukas 1997: 12, 18). We have to confront 'the unexpected and the unfamiliar ... [the] 'wicked problems' [as well]' (Lissack, 1999b: 117–19, 120).

Complexity is a 'whole' in its own right. Like a poem, complexities are 'not an entirely unique entity ... [and] ... like in poetic reading, [their] reality is not seen as a fait accompli but as possibility ... [just as narrative] meaning is not something already existing in reality–as–text but something emerging from the reality–as–text' (Tsoukas, 1997: 10, 15). Emergence bubbles up 'as an overall system of behaviour that comes out of the interaction of many participants' (Lissack, 1999b: 111).

All the different elements of a system of complexity belong together. No matter how complex, in themselves, they fit together. The unity is not characterized by obedient subservience but as being–in and –for themselves. The elements cohere as a 'totality of complexity.' Different elements can be close or far apart but remain in relationship. The elements need not be identical but they cohere as in 'like,' 'as,' 'link' and 'alike.' Coherence resembles being in 'good company'–in good company there is a lot of listening and communication. In coherence, language is channeled and harnessed in mutual and reciprocal respect. In coherence, there is no one–way traffic, neither top–down nor bottom–up. Interaction is sideways and diagonal: 'interactions require language or some other mechanism of fairly continual communication ... [and] word choice is ... a fundamental tool for the manager' (Lissack, 1999b: 115, 120, 122, italics added). A company director who makes for 'good company' encapsulates a network of complex relationships. Strength is derived from the secure knowledge that all the elements belong and that they belong together. They are complete–they complete each other–force is gathered through the special and complex logos of complexity (cf. Heidegger, 1929).

Complexity is a activity of coherence and a way of thinking. In complexity, the elements of a system commit to one another and the 'whole of the elements' is committed to complexity. Conception (thought) and the conception of life (fecundity) are fundamental forms of complexity, which, as potential or possibility, is chaos. The actions of complexity are complementary when defined by the total of the system. They fill up the holes, gaps and voids; they connect nothingness with complex order. In Greek, 'chaos' means void and nothingness. Filling the void is true added value."
(Eric Lefebvre and Hugo Letiche, p.13–14)

EMERGENCE, 1(3), 7–15

TAGS

chaoscoherencecomplexity • Eric Lefebvre • fecundity • good company • Hugo Letiche • juxtapositionlayeredorganisation • poetic reading • uncertainty

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
12 APRIL 2005

Mnemosyne-Atlas: Visual Clustering Through Good Company

"[Aby Warburg's Mnemosyne–Atlas] is fundamentally [an] attempt to combine the philosophical with the image–historical approach [of information organisation]. Attached on wooden boards covered with black cloth are photographs of images, reproductions from books, and visual materials from newspapers and/or daily life, which Warburg arranges in such a way that they illustrate one or several thematic areas. ... [Images in the atlas are] not ordered according to visual similarity, evident in the sense of an iconographic history of style; but rather through relationships caused by an affinity for one another and the principle of good company, which let themselves be reconstructed through the study of texts."
(Rudolf Frieling, Media Art Net)

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