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Dr Bashir Ahmad
Depatment of Management Sciences

Philosophies of Administrative Sciences

Knowledge and Learning

Pending Discussion
Student Led Discussion:
1. How are we related to time and how it works?
2. What is the future of work and organizations?
3. How personal ego and politics work in organizations?
4. What is the future of HRM?
5. How human beings look at ethics and morality in the business of
today and times to come?
6. Advertisements: Ethical Views and Business.
General Discussion Sponsored by the Instructor:-
1. How do postmodernists view organizational theory? Can we
actually create postmodern theory of organizations?
2. Will postmodern approaches improve the theory of organization
or are they simply destructive?
1. Structured social system consisting of individuals

organized into different groups working together to

attain predetermined objectives.

2. Points: social systems, made up of individuals,

organized into working teams / groups, having clear

direction, with necessary wherewithal, all activities

minutely harnessed, ultimately lead to attaining the

organizational objectives.

Organizational Functioning:

1. People and organizations relationship

2. Political and cultural perspective affect structure of


3. Functioning of organizations is based on three lenses

i.e. strategic design, political and cultural.

4. Evolution took place over a period of time

Organizational Perspectives

1. Strategic design perspective dealing with structuring

and organizing means for productive act ivies

2. Political perspective revolves around conflict and

harmony of interest and power

3. Cultural perspective revolves around human nature

and behavior as well as organizational culture

developed period of time and subcultures.

1. Interpretivism also known as anti-positivism is belief

in social science that social realm may not be subject

to same methods of investigation as natural world; that

academics must reject empiricism and scientific

methods in the conduct of social science.

2. They hold that researchers should focus on

understanding the interpretations that social actions

have for the people being studied.

1. Interpretivst argue that subjective thought and ideas

are valid, contrary to positivists view of wholesome

dependence on human self senses.

2. The idea is based on Max Webers work who described

sociology as social science which attempts the

interpretive understanding of social action in order to

arrive at causal explanation of effects.

1. Interpretivism looks at the world through eyes of

people being studied for multiple perspectives of

reality than the one reality of positivism.

2. Points to ponder: broader and diversified perspective,

no self possession, concerned mostly with qualitative

nature of research and flexible in approach and outlook

Interpretive Perspective
1. Interpretive, a theoretical perspective is based on the

idea that a sociological understanding of human

behavior must include the meaning that social actors

give to what they and others do.

2. When people interact, they interact and interpret what

is going on.

3. This is what it gives to social life, a patterned quality in

terms of understanding and perceptions.

Functionalist Perspective
1. Functionalist perspective, also functionalism, is one of the

major theoretical perspectives in sociology. It deals in how

social order is possible, how society remains relatively


2. Functionalism interprets each part of society as how it

contributes to stability of whole society.

3. Society is more than sum of its parts; rather, each part of

society is functional for the stability of the whole society.

Interpretive Definition of Culture
1. From interpretive point of view, organizations are

cultures i.e. dealing essentially with shared symbols

and meanings.

2. Organizational culture means talking about the

importance for people of symbolism, myths, stories,

rituals and legends about interpretation of events,

ideas and experiences.

Points for General Discussion

1. Managing culture and cultural changes

2. Change as monolithic process

3. Cultural dynamics; integration to fragmentation

4. Pluralistic theory of organizational change

5. Organizational learning as interpretive view

6. Organizational evolution as interpretive view

7. Organizational decay / stagnation as interpretive view

Todays Discussion

1. Organizational Learning and Communities of

Practice towards unified view of working, learning
and innovations.

2. Re-embedding Situated-ness, Importance of Power

Relations in Learning Theory.
1. Persisting change in performance or performance
potential (brought) about as a result of the learners
interaction with the environment (Driscoll)

2. Relatively permanent change in persons knowledge

or behavior due to experience (Mayer)

3. An enduring change in behavior, or in the capacity

to behave in a given fashion, which results from
practice or other forms of experience (Shuell)
Learning Theory
Q: How do people learn?
A: Nobody really knows.
But there are 5 main theories:

1. Behaviorism
2. Cognitivism
3. Social Learning Theory
4. Social Constructivism
5. Multiple Intelligences
Confined to observable and measurable behavior:

1. Classical Conditioning - Pavlov

2. Operant Conditioning - Skinner


1. Grew in response to Behaviorism

2. Knowledge is stored cognitively as symbols

3. Learning is the process of connecting symbols in a

meaningful & memorable way

4. Studies focused on the mental processes that

facilitate symbol connection
Social Learning Theory (SLT)

1. Grew out of Cognitivism, A. Bandura (1973)

2. Learning takes place through observation and

sensorial experiences

3. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

4. SLT is the basis of the movement against violence

in media & video games
Social Constructivism
1. Grew out of and in response to Cognitivism, framed
around metacognition

2. Knowledge is actively constructed

3. Learning is:
A search for meaning by the learner


An inherently social activity

Dialogic and recursive

The responsibility of the learner

Multiple Intelligences (MI)

1. Grew out of Constructivism, framed around


2. Enables students to leverage their strengths and

purposefully target and develop their weaknesses