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Theory of Social Interaction

Theory of Social Interaction

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Published by jal_hart
A new general theory of human development, which spans the whole social sciences.
A new general theory of human development, which spans the whole social sciences.

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Published by: jal_hart on Jun 10, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Julian Hart
a new theory of human developmentwhich spansthe whole of the social sciences
Ever pondered on any of these questions? 
Why and what are the major political ideologies (such as liberalism,socialism, etc)? 
Why does empirical analysis suggest that there are five fundamental dimensions to human personality? 
Why are there two main forms of social structure (bureaucratic and community) and how do they arise? 
Does social and cultural progress really happen? 
How and why did human civilisation first start? 
The Lancefield Theory
Lancefield Theory – a new theory of social interaction
Page 2 of 51
Julian Hart jal.hart@btinternet.com
The Lancefield Theory is a new theory of social interaction. It is a construct, whichspans and connects the whole social sciences from psychology to macro-economics.The proposed theory provides a completely new way to understand humandevelopment and to appreciate the natural progress and evolution of cities andcivilisations. While the theory challenges existing approaches to constructing thesocial sciences and the various academic silos, it ties together many of the mostimportant observations and theories which have been made over the last 200 years.This theory of social interaction suggests that the progress of human society is drivenby five fundamental social processes. These social processes manifest as positivefeedback systems, which exist wherever there is interaction between human beings,from pair interactions to nation states and beyond. The processes are a-scalar. Oneway, in which we are already aware of these processes is through the politicalideologies of (1) liberalism, (2) socialism, (3) fundamentalism and (4) sustainability.The apparent social processes each drive the evolution of human societies in differentdirections, creating tensions of development: one process acts to tear a human societyapart, two of the processes create different types of social structure, a fourth helps ahuman society to adapt to a changing outside social or physical world and the fifthprovides a society with the capacity to transform itself. The processes can beconstrued to be the processes of Birth, Growth, Health (health maintenance),Adaptation and Transformation of cities. Only when all five processes operatetogether does human development progress in an even manner; being positivefeedback systems, each process acting alone would (and has been seen in the pastto) drive human society to inevitable self-destruction.The five social processes are driven by each and every human being seeking to satisfyhis or her basic Needs, his or her desire to survive and thrive and to experiencehappiness in its various guises. This new theory for the first time creates acomprehensible connection between all aspects of the human scale world, that whichwe experience in our daily lives, and the macroscopic society – our cultures, socialstructures, ideologies and large scale economic patterns of behaviour.This theory of social interaction is not contained only to the domain of humancivilisation. It is equally applicable to the whole history of Man’s evolution and byextension to all species and the natural world. This new startling theory in factprovides a template for a general theory of evolution, extending from the socialsciences across the natural sciences and embracing the physical sciences too. Thisnew theory completes the picture initially drawn by Darwin, by showing how bothcompetition and cooperation operate in human society and in natural systems.
IntroductionPremise: simplicity leading to complexity Initial validation of the theory Social processes in operationChronology of city origin and development Experience of individual within society Life of a human as a social animal  Assumptions and building blocksBasic structure of the theory of social interactionDetailed Interaction ProcessManifestation of the social processes in city form Application to the modern businessExpression of the process in natural evolution
Julian Hart was born in 1969, a month before Man first stepped onto the Moon. Helived a sheltered, middle England, home counties life until the age of 8, when hisparents moved to work in Chile, South America. Soon thereafter he went to boardingschool at Oundle, near Peterborough. Julian studied Chemistry at Bristol Universityand later obtained a Masters in Environmental Science at Brunel University. His firstcareer job was with the international engineering consultancy, Ove Arup & Partners.Over 7 years at Arup he migrated from environmental consultancy into town planningand sustainable design and helped to develop the organisation’s worldwide strategy onsustainable development. He also began doctoral research on the evolution of cities,became involved in the Urban Task Force and lectured at Harvard on greenarchitecture.After a year at Arup Associates, the architectural arm of Arup, Julian went ‘client side’and spent the next 6 years as development manager for Stratford City, now centrepiece for the Olympics 2012. He helped take Stratford from concept to planningpermission for a new metropolitan centre for London. After that he set up LancefieldConsulting, providing advice to clients on planning and sustainability issues in theproperty sector for 3
years. With the economy changing, he joined the newly formedHomes and Communities Agency as Design Manager for London. In this capacity heoversees the quality of design for all publicly funded housing development acrossLondon.
Lancefield Theory – a new theory of social interaction
Page 3 of 51
Julian Hart jal.hart@btinternet.com
The proposed theory of social interaction was formulated by the author because of aperception that existing interpretations of sustainable development have little, if any,intellectual credibility. This led the author on a journey of philosophical discovery,which first produced a new way of appreciating the evolution of cities and civilisationsand was then seen to have wider application. What began as an innocentinvestigation into constructs for sustainable indicators for cities morphed into a newtheory of human development.This booklet will seek to set out this new theory through the lens of the human worldand how it describes the process of societal development. Justification for the validityof the theory of social interaction will be provided. The new construct will then begeneralised to the natural world to achieve a general theory of evolution.
This theory of social interaction suggests that the growth and development of cities (asan example system within the universe) can best be described through the continuousinterplay of five identifiable and quite distinct and observable social processes. Thesemacroscopic processes originate at the microscopic level from individual humansinteracting as they seek to satisfy their personal Needs to survive and thrive. Scaledup, the macroscopic phenomena represent the processes of Birth, Growth, Health(health maintenance), Adaptation and Transformation of cities. All five processes arepositive feedback systems. All five processes are continually operating within humansociety, to greater or lesser degrees; the extent to which any particular process isapparent at a particular point in time will strongly influence the direction of development of any particular society. The five processes create opposing tensionswithin society, such that when all five are functioning in equal measure development or evolution is a progressive, fairly gradual process. If, or when, any individual processaccelerates faster than the other processes, then human societies can very quicklybecome unbalanced in development and rapidly move down a path of self-destruction.Each social process is pure, where the real life we experience represents a complexinterplay of each pure phenomenon. We experience the influence of these socialprocesses in a variety of ways, including how we are each stimulated to prioritisefulfilment of our personal Needs (becoming materialistic, a workaholic, a religiouszealot or addicted to an iPhone) or in the choices we make to achieve a work-lifebalance. For reasons, which will become apparent, our experience of these fiveprocesses is only now, in modern democratic societies, becoming objectified andthereby more easily observable.
The Birth Process
In civilisation, the Birth Process drives the human activity of trade. It initially arisesfrom our fundamental daily material needs (food and water), extending in modernsociety to all our material desires. It can most readily be associated with the politicalideology of liberalism. As people are driven to interact in material exchanges, thisaffects in a deep way how they behave, how they see others and themselves, howthey perceive space and time and what they think. The Birth Process drivesindividualism and desire for freedom of behaviour and a strong focus on the present.The process acts to tear society apart. From tribal systems to modern bureaucracies,the Birth Process operates to atomise society, breaking apart social structures anderasing social boundaries. It has also been the driver behind Modernity: increasingrationality in human society. Its logical extreme is anarchy. It operates by forever creating new possibilities, insinuating competition and opportunism, wherever cooperation has a hold. It manifests as the process of material entropy in humansociety.
The Growth Process
The Growth Process can most easily be associated with the formation and expansionof bureaucratic systems, noting the tendency of the latter for inexorable growth. Itcreates rigid social structure and through this provides human societies with the abilityto build physical structures. In its pure form the Growth Process represents simplereplication of structure: another brick on the wall, another identical car produced fromthe manufacturing line, another identikit role created in society. It is a process, whichis driven by people seeking safety and security, to ensure that their material needs willcontinue to be available tomorrow (in the immediate future) as well as today. Counter-intuitively this process inculcates in human society a total focus on the past, seeking toextend and perpetuate agreeable trends and the status quo: extending the securityand predictability of the known past into the near future. The Growth Process canmost readily be associated with the ideologies of socialism and capitalism (these aredifferent expressions of the same underlying process). The Growth Process has alsobeen the driving force behind ever-increasing division of labour. When allowed to spin
Civilisation has arisen because of the emergence and on-goingexistence of cities.Cities and thence civilisations have progressed as a result of thecontinuous interplay between five fundamental social processes.These processes of human development represent the processes of Birth, Growth, Health, Adaptation and Transformation of cities

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