April 13, 2005


Writing about u from Random cogitation.....

blogging tool

February 06, 2005

Analysis 1, 2 and 3….

You might have read about Analysis one, two and three in the literature. Do you carry out these analyses in the assignment?

'Analysis one' is to state who the Client ( who caused the study to happen) is; potential problem-owner/solvers; these inform a range of systems to model. So 'Yes'.

Analysis two is to identify roles+norms+values – a 'cultural' analysis . We haven't looked at this , you will probably interpret some aspects implicitly.

Analysis Three is a 'political ' analysis that informs your choice of systems and 'recommendations for change'. However this is theoretically difficult to pin down. In SSM studies thinking about'commodities of power, how power is passed on etc is sometimes discussed. Whether you wish to question aspects that you can read into the case I leave to you.

February 04, 2005

Electronic journals

Follow-up to Preparation for week 14 seminars from Christine's blog


Here is a list of a few journals publishing OR research, if you use the Warwick e-journals link (above) to access these you will need your library number and password.

Computers and OR
European Journal of OR
Journal of the OR Society (JORS)
Systems Practice (now Systems Practice and Action Research)

February 03, 2005

Learning about activity modelling

Well I hope that the last seminar for NMOR in SSM modelling crystalised a few more insights into usefulness of the approach. I've found that this weeks modelling provoked some 'critical' questions as to where to set the boundary to the model on 'professional planning of production plans.

You might not be that keen on manufacturing operations (as I once was in a previous role) but if you take your observations about what doubts and questions you were faced with in the modelling ( Here is where your blog comes in…. make use of it!), you can reflect upon these and ask 'why might it be useful to be guided by the modelling to ask that kind of question?' – you will have lots of useful material to be able to evaluate SSM.

January 29, 2005


Writing about an entry you don't have permission to view

The world view for 'lighting the big olympic torch' ??

Any suggestions – what is taken for granted in this behaviour?

An opening ceremony focusses anticipation by participants and wider public on olympic events. (The symbolism of the fire burning is ????)

need to signal the opening of the games —— lighting the big Olympic torch——— need met by gathering together all participants and hosting public in a lighting ceremony.

January 26, 2005

Assignment queries: word count

Follow-up to Preparation for week 14 seminars from Christine's blog

"I'm finding it difficult to cope with the word count. Getting as far as stage one and two I have written 500 words. This is even more disturbing when you consider 70% is on stages six and seven.

Appendices are not coming naturally; they ruin the flow of the report. I'm also unsure what (and not) to put in them.

Any suggestions? "

70% is for the SSM work itself and suggestions as to how best to proceed in further study or data gathering that you would advise in your 'OR role'. You will not be able to give a descriptive account of all the work that you do. You will need to present your most valuable/key findings reached by the end point of your study.

You do not need to include a description of the techniques of elements of SSM models, you can assume that the reader is familiar with these.

You might find it useful to reflect upon your process of modelling and using SSM in a separate section, for the 30% that this attracts. Again the tight word count calls for skill in evaluating key significant observations and evaluating these insights. In this part you can change from a report- writing style to use of the first person,, and use of the appendices will become easier. If you make a claim about gaining a new understanding with use of a model, try to convey the original idea and any contrasting idea with some evidence from an extract of work done.
As I mentioned if you note down ideas as you work through your assignment in your blog, the data is there for you to use – remember it is possible to mark an entry as 'for your eyes only' if you wish.

Sometimes having a record of what you find difficult to understand , or some doubts as to how carry out a task, can be valuable to go back to. At a later point in time you you might notice that you have overcome these difficulties and then you can reflect upon what you have learnt in between. This is the value of a learning diary and portfolio of work.

Try to relate your learning points to the field of OR as you see it, or perhaps make brief reference to key points inthe wider literature here if you so wish.

January 25, 2005

Value of rich picturing.

Writing about an entry you don't have permission to view

Two aspects seem to come through in these reflections ; evaluating how rich picturing fosters a certain kind of discussion – making an agreement of what to focus on by the group;

– using a rich picture to communicate the area of concerns to a wider audience.

January 24, 2005

Where to start on assignment 1.

Writing about an entry you don't have permission to view

If SSM is an approach that offers some support when 'what to do' is not clear and vague then it looks as if the assignment will be a useful way for you to test it out.

Start by capturing the doubts and uncertainties in your rich picture ( through the role given). Quality is an important issue, but leave the rich picture open to other issues too to get a broad range of 'potential systems' to model ..more on this this week.

January 20, 2005

Discussing use of blogs social/academic?

Writing about Against the division of academic and social blogging from Transversality - Robert O'Toole

Preparation for week 14 seminars

In the seminar this week we tried out rich picturing to have the opportunity to see how it could help as a 'thinking tool' for both team discussion and exploration of ideas; and also as device to communicate views to a wider group — what worked what wasn't so clear???

The idea now is to use the rich picture of the Catatech case, with some consideration of problem-owners and problem-solvers, and develop a range of I—T—O + W models : I'd like to discuss what is difficult or problematic about doing this in the seminar next week.

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  • These are roles –which may be attributed to the same group. The key question for @customer' is ' who… by on this entry
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