Entries for October 2005

tangling with critics of the democratization of knowledge

I had read a while back that some academics were hostile toward Wikipedia, but I had not encountered it myself till this weekend. I attended an academic retreat on worthy puzzles in the field of organizational studies, and in between formal sessions, had several conversations in which I suggested that Wikipedia was a fascinating example of self-organizing that was worthy of study. In response, I encountered derision from two faculty who advanced the first two on Wikipedia's list of criticisms of Wikipedia. I found myself motivated to become an evangelist for Wikipedia, countering their criticisms so that they would consider exploring the community from my point of view, as a potentially interesting phenomenon to study.

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Creating Sustainable Leaders through Mindfulness, Hope, and Compassion

Resonant Leadership: Creating Sustainable Leaders through
Mindfulness, Hope and Compassion

featuring
Dr. Richard Boyatzis, Professor of Organizational Behavior and expert in Emotional Intelligence.
Dr. Boyatzis' discussion will address:
• How great leaders move us through a deep emotional connection called resonance;
• What resonance looks and feels like; and
• How to develop resonant leadership in yourself and others.

Monday, November 14, 2005
George S. Dively Building (on the Case campus)
11240 Bellflower Road
7:30 - 9:30 am
Cost: $30/program includes breakfast and parking
The event is open to the public.

To attend, please register by November 7 - seats will fill quickly.
Phone: 216-368-6413
Web: www.weatherhead.case.edu/breakfast

article about SAGES in the Observer

There was an article in the campus newspaper last Friday with two key words in the headline: SAGES and disappointing. I could not get a sense of how typical the varied reactions to the program have been, though it seems important to find out. It might be easy to dismiss student complaints about the program as just stemming from Case's broader student culture of criticism and complaint, but it's hard to say whether the squeaky wheels are attracting the reporter's attention, or if there are not many students out there singing the praises of their First Seminar instructors.

If SAGES is a change initiative, bumps along the road to implementation are to be expected. How do we make sense of this feedback? Do we need to adjust our marketing so that it gives more of a sense of realistic preview? Do we need to provide more training and support to SAGES instructors? Do we need to surface the enthusiastic voices so that they cannot drown out the naysayers? This would make an interesting consulting project for an action research team.

An entire country, networked without wires...

David Pollard shared a link to a press release from Rogers Communications and Bell Canada announcing a plan to install high-speed wireless networks in all the populated areas of Canada within three years.

That raises the ante a bit on OneCleveland's efforts to wire downtown, doesn't it? What if we didn't think of ourselves as in a race with Philadelphia, but as part of a relay-race team with them in the competition with the country to our north?

Of course, it won't be free; not with Rogers Communications involved. And I can't figure out from the press release if the network will allow internet access at the same kind of ultra broadband speeds that OneCleveland argues are the infrastructure on which high tech development must be based. Still, it's intriguing. I wonder if businesses will see this as a reason to base themselves in Canadian cities? It might give cities like Toronto an edge in attracting immigrant entrepreneurs or joint ventures. Time will tell...

What Women (and Men) Want: Flexible Workplaces

In my previous entry about how young women's expectations regarding work and family roles, and what it will take to level the playing field for mothers and fathers in the workplace, I suggested that Louise Story's New York Times article suggesting a new trend toward full-time at-home motherhood might have some flaws. This new Alternet commentary by Linda Basch, Ilene Lang, and Deborah Merrill-Sands encourages other writers to correct the bias in Louise Story's reporting by refocusing public attention not on the anecdotally-documented preferences of elite women, but on the statistical patterns evident in the American workplace as a whole.

Some of the statistics in the commentary spoke particularly eloquently to me, so I am quoting them here:

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