Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://une.intersearch.com.au/unejspui/handle/1959.11/2515
Title: Problem Solving Through Cognitive Engagement
Contributor(s): Houghton, Luke (author); Saravanamthu, Kalathevi (supervisor); Metcalfe, Mike (supervisor)
Conferred Date: 2008
Copyright Date: 2008
Open Access: Yes
Handle Link: https://hdl.handle.net/1959.11/2515
Abstract: The traditional problem solving model characterised by Simon's chess playing steps of first collecting information and then evaluating alternative solutions, has been found to be problematic for dealing with complex, messy or wicked problems. Continuing in the tradition of the 'soft' management sciences and pragmatic systems thinking literature, this thesis seeks elaborations to this traditional problem solving model. It adopts an interpretive epistemology, believing problems to be social constructs. It therefore suggests that problem solving be seen more in terms of appreciating and responding to participants' cognitive frames. These frames are seen as the "windows" that form the conceptualisation of the way in which actors understand the world. Responding and interacting to these conceptual frames is called the 'cognitive engagement' approach to problem solving. This thesis, therefore, first highlights some of the limitations of the traditional problem solving model to demonstrate that something more generic is required for messy or wicked problems. It then summarises the now extensive literature that argues that this sort of problem solving is best understood in terms of shifting participants' cognitive frame rather than in terms of information collection. Next, the cognitive engagement literature is summarised to demonstrate that this does seem to provide a viable alternative. The cognitive engagement concept is then justified by using it to interpret two areas of concern. One involves an aid agency, which solved its perceived funding problems only when it was forced to change its conceptual frame by a tragic event. The second is an in-depth case which involves a large transport company that was having problems implementing its supply chain enterprise system because operators had a different conceptual frame to that of the management. It is concluded that the cognitive engagement concept offers a useful alternative addition to how we should think about problem solving involving human activity.
Publication Type: Thesis Doctoral
Rights Statement: Copyright 2008 - Luke Houghton
HERDC Category Description: T2 Thesis - Doctorate by Research
Statistics to Oct 2018: Visitors: 227
Views: 218
Downloads: 20
Appears in Collections:Thesis Doctoral

Files in This Item:
8 files
File Description SizeFormat 
open/SOURCE05.pdfThesis, part 223.68 MBAdobe PDF
Download Adobe
View/Open
open/SOURCE03.pdfAbstract1.33 MBAdobe PDF
Download Adobe
View/Open
open/SOURCE04.pdfThesis, part 111.6 MBAdobe PDF
Download Adobe
View/Open
Show full item record

Page view(s)

84
checked on Feb 8, 2019

Download(s)

24
checked on Feb 8, 2019
Google Media

Google ScholarTM

Check

SCOPUSTM   
Citations

 

Items in Research UNE are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.