Critical systemic thinking, or the standard engineer in Paris

Peter Bednar, Christine Welch

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review


In wanting to pursue critically informed research, we highlight a steppingstone we use in our struggle answering the question 'How do we recognize what to critically reflect upon?'. When we, as researchers, try to apply critical thinking we may find that our descriptions of our reasoning undermine the purpose for those descriptions. We perceive problems to flow from an entrapment of mind in the 'fallacity' / fallibility of everyday common sense reasoning, leading to detaching of particular observations we make from 'us' as particular observers. For us as researchers and analysts to be able to critically reflect upon any taken-for-granted assumptions we first need to recognize at least some of these assumptions. The authors of this paper see an opportunity in reflecting on 'The Standard Engineer in Paris' to highlight some fundamental entrapment of mind. This may offer us a step towards an escape route from some restrictive assumptions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe 4th european conference on research methodology for business and management studies
EditorsA. Brown, D. Remenyi
Place of PublicationReading
PublisherAcademic Conferences Limited
Number of pages8
ISBN (Print)0954709683
Publication statusPublished - 2005


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