Key concepts in Structuration
Theory
Larry Stillman
IMS 5048
Aug 2005
Professor Lord Anthony Giddens
A British Social Theorist (1970s-early
2000s)
Now in the House of Lords
•Excessively learned, confusing, incomplete, multidimensional, slippery & provocative & not always entirely
original & doesn’t answer criticisms fully, but…
•He puts it together so well…popular textbooks
•Tried to develop a theory of social order called
structuration
•A dialogue with the classic theories of Durkeim,
Marx, Weber
•How is social order maintained and transmitted.
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
2
Fundamental concepts and
categories
How people act in everyday lives
How communities and societies are structured
How culture is transmitted across time/space
How people remember/forget
How /why categories are developed that
underlie knowledge
How tools or tech. of storage interrelate with the
above
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
3
What is ‘structure’
Simple determinism (Marxist, positivist or otherwise is
too crude a tool)
‘Structure’ has a special meaning; the rules or principles
we constantly reproduce
Not physical or built structures, eg a building, or even the
formal organisational structure
Structuration = the study of the medium and
the outcome of social rules and order
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
4
Human Agency
People aren’t dumb and
passive within ‘systems’; they
are knowledgeable actors; we
actually pull our own strings
This had been underplayed in
much theory
How do people get their
agency?
Schemas of language, power,
norms/values
The combination of agency
and resources >
transformative effects.
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
5
Gregory,
3 October, 2015
Dictionary Key
of Human
concepts in Structuration theory
Geography, s.v. Structuration
6
Machine Agency: not in Giddens, Actor
Network Theory
A new complex technological apparatus in a
human-machine environment
What are the ‘rules’ which determine the
different ways scanners are used by doctors
and technicians in two different hospitals?
Why does a machine have ‘strong agency’ in
one hospital, and not in another?
The fundamental agency that ICTs have today,
and our dependency on time/space changing
networks
Key axiom:
Technologies are the medium and
outcomes of the practices they recursively
organise’ - see especially Orlikowski
(e.g. Minitel, the ‘other internet’ in statist
France, the PC in corporate US, wikis,
blogs, tied into particular understandings
of the ‘place’/role/control of technology)
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
Examples - Barley on
CT scanners, Minitel
as state technology
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minitel
7
Agency elements
Agency through
human action
Memory/storage
Metadata
Technology
Acts and
interactions of
communication,
the culture of
communication
(formal, informal,
hierarchical, flat)
Cultures and
structures of
communication
Systems for
retaining/storing
tacit, explicit
knowledge and the
tensions therein
(Knowledge
Management
Nature and quality
of the information
Value-added
descriptors to
categorise and
manage
information
The ‘artefactual’
tools
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
8
Agents
TimeSpace
Human Action
Metadata
Creation
Organisation
Stored
Memory
Technology
Capture
Pluralisation
Dimensions
3 October, 2015
Version 1.2 8 Sept 04
Key concepts in Structuration theory
9
© Larry
3 October,
2015
Stillman 2004
Key concepts in Structuration theory
10
Explicit knowledge
The documented/documentable
Giddens/structuration calls this ‘discursive
knowledge’ – what can be explained
– Computer programs, manuals
– Procedures eg archiving procedures, statutes
– Office records, decisions, catalogues
Which information specializations are relevant
with this aspect of memory?
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
11
Tacit knowledge
Things you know, but can’t necessarily explain
well.
Giddens calls this ‘practical knowledge’
–
–
–
–
–
How to drive (contrast with explicit road rules)
Office procedures
How to use the explicit knowledge!
Helping people …”It’s a red book, I think”
[but is it adequate?]
Which information specializations are relevant
with
memory?
3 October,
2015this function
Key of
concepts
in Structuration theory
12
Time and Space: We construct
and live through them
Giddens introduced discussion of time and
space into broader discourse, based on the work
of geographers such as Hagerstrand
The structuring and real effects of ‘time space
distanciation’ hadn’t really been considered in
broader discussion
People construct and work through physical and
virtual bundles of space time, drawing upon
resources (physical and institutional)
The Information Continuum is an attempt to
apply this in the ‘Memory Professions’
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
13
The time frame of memory
The time of an act itself
The life of an actor
Institutional time frames:
practices/knowledge
Stored memory (paper, electronic)
Societal – ‘the long duree’
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
14
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
15
Time/space are relative
Einstein, early 20th
century art/.
From Cartesian axes to
malleability
– The impact of science,
photography
Geographers have been
very aware of space time
compression &
movement subject to
relations and forces of
production (Harvey)
[ Balla, Dog on a Leash, 1912 (futurism)
; Duchamp, Nude descending a
staircase, 1912 (cubism)]
Pres Roosevelt –
‘That’s not Art!’
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
16
Personal and
institutional
movements
constructing and
through time and
space
3 October, 2015
© Larry Stillman,
Key concepts in Structuration theory
2005
17
‘Memory Traces’
It is really all in our individual and collective heads (and
artifacts) and what we do with ideas and objects!
Order is really nothing more than ‘memory traces’,
everyday practices
We create, reflexively think about, communicate, and
change the social rules and principles about us
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
18
How does this help with the study
of information and organisations?
Organisations are ‘power containers’ of rules and
processes
– ‘resources are drawn upon
Formal (explicit) and informal (tacit): it’s not about rote
learning and procedures
A lot of KM/IM etc is about attempting to ‘process’ formal
and informal knowledge through ICTs.
Organisations, and the information professions exist
across time and space in very particular cultures that
influence, and are influenced by their particular
technologies
This helps to contextualise the emergence of IM, IS, KM,
Archives/Records, Librarianship etc
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
19
Disciplinary* implications of ICM for
different professions
Looking at the right-hand side
in particular
Particular interpretive priorities
(prof’l, juridical, and client
languages)
Particular resources/agencies
are emphasised
Particular norms are
emphasised
> impact on the rest of the
diagram/action/structure
relationship
* Discipline in the Foucauldian sense
3 October, 2015
Key concepts in Structuration theory
20
Descargar

Key concepts in Structuration Theory