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Undo the math : Managerial and organizational cognition theoretical and practical implications of cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary semiotic gaps

Abstract : In a critical management study, drawing on Aristotelian analysis of language (Aristotle, 2000; Benveniste, 1966), (Crosby, 1997)’s historical analysis of the emergence of what he coins modern society’s pentametric mentalité, (Jorion, 2009)’s anthropological exposition of the West’s invention of Truth and (objective) Reality, and following, albeit with a much more limited scope, in the footsteps of Hellenist philosopher Jullien’s forays into Chinese thought (Jullien, 1995, 2009), numbers, space and time are revealed as semiotically-grounded social constructs and philological methods —revealing semiotic gaps (Cruse, 2004; Lyons, 1995)— shed light unmatched by past multicultural surveys (Hofstede, 1983; House, Hanges, Javidan, Dorfman, & Gupta, 2006).From this, are defended the merits of exercising self-doubt, open-mindedness, and unlearning capability, whilst in cross-cultural and crossdisciplinary contexts, and awareness of cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary cognitive gaps at the individual, team, group and organizational levels.Anchored epistemologically in Popperian falsifiability (Popper, 2002), Kuhnian scientific progress (Kuhn, 1996) and Porter’s sociologicaltreatise on our trust in numbers (Porter, 1995), the author joins the debate on the nature of social science. What this thesis’ empirical findings reveal in the context of mathematically supported model-building in the realm of social science is explored; that social scientists and business practitioners model-building is blindsided to the socially constructed nature of mathematics (Berger & Luckmann, 1966; Jorion, 2009) is pondered; how post-Newtonian theoretical physics builds new theory by building new math is evoked; mathematically sound alternatives to Peano arithmetic and Euclidean geometry that have not been explicitly dismissed or considered by social scientists is exposed; independent and superficially paradoxical attempts to theorize organizations with various bodies ofmathematics are reconciled —notably (Bitbol, 2009; Donaldson, 2010); and development principles towards a phenomenologicallygrounded mathematics corpus are yielded. Next, how a social network perspective applied conjointly at the semantic and cultural levels of analysis may usefully extend and bring insights to standard qualitative content analysis is put forward. To illustrate the practical implications of this thesis, one fertile ground is focused upon and a loss-less method to merge indwelled information systems is posited. Empirically illustrating the Aristotelian breakdown of language into its component parts (and the special role numbers, space, and time play in Western discourse and language), a methodology is described for nonloss post-merger integration of organizational knowledge that builds both on (Codd, 1970, 1972, 1974; Date et al., 2003; Fagin, 1977, 1979, 1981) database normalization from the field of Information Management in Computer Science, and on (Nonaka, 1994)’s SECI dynamic model of knowledge creation fromthe field of Knowledge Management in Business Administration Studies. This methodology, coined Archnormalization by the author,introduces the sociologically-grounded concept of Attribute-free Entities. Finally, further avenues of research are outlined that ultimately lie beyond the scope of this thesis.
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Marc Idelson. Undo the math : Managerial and organizational cognition theoretical and practical implications of cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary semiotic gaps. Business administration. HEC, 2011. English. ⟨NNT : 2011EHEC0002⟩. ⟨pastel-01070270⟩



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