Friday, July 14, 2006
This morning I was able to attend a Research Colloquium and heard a presentation by Dr John Burgoyne on Critical Realism. A lot of the discourse was going on on a plane higher than mine - with all sorts of 'isms' and 'ists' being bandied about, but it was still fascinating to see the level of discourse and have a few hints at where it might apply in the MBA programme.
I won't (or, actually, can't) get into a discussion of what Critical Realism is [see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Critical_realism if you want to know more] other than it seems to say that there is an objective, knowable world out there, and there are reliable mechanisms for experiencing that world, but that we may each perceive that world differently according to our own mechanisms
We focus on learning at Henley, but learning is not really so easy to observe since it is itself a mental construct. How does the learner know when learning has taken place? And does our creating the space for learning define whatever happens as learning, therefore bringing it into existence?
If you don't have the language to describe something, does it exist? Conversely, if you have the language to describe something, does it then exist?
No wonder my brain hurts!