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Change!: Combining Analytic Approaches with Street Wisdom OPEN ACCESS

edited by Gabriele Bammer
Copyright Date: 2015
Published by: ANU Press
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  • Book Info
    Book Description:

    Change happens all the time, so why is driving particular change generally so hard? Why are the outcomes often unpredictable? Are some types of change easier to achieve than others? Are some techniques for achieving change more effective than others? How can change that is already in train be stopped or deflected? Knowledge about change is fragmented and there is nowhere in the academic or practice worlds that provides comprehensive answers to these and other questions. Every discipline and practice area has only a partial view and there is not even a map of those different perspectives. The purpose of this book is to begin the task of developing a comprehensive approach to change by gathering a variety of viewpoints from the academic and practice worlds.

    eISBN: 978-1-925022-65-0
    Subjects: Sociology, Environmental Science, Anthropology
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Table of Contents

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  1. Part 1 Introduction
    • Gabriele Bammer

      Change happens all the time, so why is driving particular change generally so hard? Why are the outcomes often unpredictable? Are some types of change easier to achieve than others? Are some techniques for achieving change more effective than others? How can change that is already in train be stopped or deflected?

      Knowledge about change is fragmented and there is nowhere in the academic or practice worlds that provides comprehensive answers to these and other questions. Every discipline and practice area has only a partial view and there is not even a map of those different perspectives. Further, it is...

  2. Part 2 Perspectives
    • Kate Carnell

      I cannot speak for all politicians. They are as diverse a group as any, with different backgrounds, education and beliefs. But you enter politics because you want to change things.

      Politicians want to make their electorate, state and country a better place. Most start wide-eyed and optimistic. The mechanisms of government and the sheer difficulty of bringing about change often produce disenchantment and cynicism. The impediments to delivering real change start with your own party and supporters. Then there is the media, our relatively short political cycle, the bureaucracy, and intolerance to any political leader’s policy failure.

      This is my...

    • Mark Stafford Smith

      Achieving change in individual and organisational behaviour to meet the challenges of global environmental change will be seen as a defining benchmark for our generation. Global environmental change challenges characteristically require inter-sectoral, multi-level responses within a fundamentally unpredictable complex systems framework. Here I focus on adaptation to climate change as an exemplar of these. Models of change that stress movement through phases of awareness, relevance, acceptance of agency and then action help to show that different motivators are required at different phases. Coupled with resilience theory and models of incremental and transformative change, they also help to identify what different...

    • Michael Wesley

      The discipline of international relations is divided by competing conceptions of change. International relations formed as a modern discipline in response to humanity’s growing destructiveness as monarchs, states and societies repeatedly went to war with each other. Twentieth-century scholarship in international relations grew up alongside a hopeful project embodied in an international movement: that if subjected to rational research and the close attention of concerned citizens, inter-state relations could be prevented from descending into the carnage of another world war.¹

      The interwar years (1919–39) became the crucible in which this project was tested. Internationalism grew apace as a genuinely...

    • Craig Browne

      Change is a central problem for the discipline of sociology. It is often claimed that sociology originated as a discipline to comprehend the major changes that characterised modern society, especially those bequeathed by two revolutions: the French Revolution and the Industrial Revolution. Sociology approaches the question of change at a number of different levels, and major theoretical traditions can be demarcated in terms of their conceptions of change, particularly with respect to their interpretations of the origins, agencies, scale, preconditions, consequences and potentials of change. As a discipline that is in dialogue with the present state of society, sociologists’ thinking...

    • Dee Madigan

      For an industry that is a slavish follower of trends, advertising has an uneasy relationship with change. This is slightly surprising given that the whole purpose of our industry, itsraison d’être, is to change people—whether it is changing their minds in terms of which brand they choose or changing their behaviour. But whilst we are very up to date on the various psychologies of change and how best to motivate people to change, our own industry has been particularly slow to do so. Watching daytime TV ads, in which a woman’s happiness and social standing amongst peers is...

    • Simon Chapman

      This chapter describes two sets of insights about using the media to advocate for the health of the public. The first comes from my involvement in the campaign for plain packaging of cigarettes and other tobacco products. Second, I describe the results of a study examining the characteristics of influential Australian public health researchers, particularly their use of the media.

      On 1 December 2012 Australia became the first nation in the world to implement plain packaging of all tobacco products, after the legislation was supported by all three of Australia’s main political parties. No country had ever mandated the entire...

    • Grant Wardlaw

      Pity the intelligence policymakers or officials attempting to design the ideal organisation to meet the changed strategic and operational environment that now faces them. The world has changed so much since the end of the Cold War that it is in many respects almost unrecognisable.

      Many see a clear divide between the ‘old’ and ‘new’ threat environments. Treverton (2009), for example, sees the ‘old’, characteristic of the Cold War era, as concentrated on large, slow-moving targets (for example, Soviet political—military establishment, strategic missile systems) and a shared frame of reference between agencies that facilitated communication with policymakers and made...

    • Lindell Bromham

      The world around us is the product of evolution—not just the actual biological organisms such as the trees, birds and insects, but also many features of the environment such as the soil, atmosphere and buildings, which have been constructed by the actions of organisms over time. This life-built environment is in a constant state of change, as are all the biological lineages that inhabit it. So if you want to understand the world around you, then a passing familiarity with the nuts and bolts of evolutionary change is an important part of your intellectual toolkit.

      Understanding the processes of...

    • Peter McDonald

      Change is inherent to demography because demography is the study of how and why populations change. Without change, demography does not exist as a discipline.

      In its simplest definition, demography is the scientific study of human populations. According to Landry (1945), the term demography was first used by the Belgian statistician Achille Guillard, in his 1855 publicationÉléments de statistique humaine, ou démographie comparée. However, John Graunt’sNatural and political observations mentioned in a following index, and made upon the bills of mortality, published in 1662 in London, is generally acknowledged to be the first published study in the field...

    • Paul Griffiths

      Key theoretical constructs are frequently defined in different ways by different practitioners. The idea of a biological species is perhaps the most famous example. The many competing ‘species concepts’ are the subject of both an enormous literature in biology (Mayden 1997) and a substantial body of commentary in the history and philosophy of science (Wilkins 2009). Such conceptual diversity is often viewed as dysfunctional, leading to miscommunication between practitioners from different fields, making their findings incommensurable with one another, and generally impeding scientific progress. For example, many have argued that the multiple meanings of the term ‘innate’ impedes progress in...

    • Beverley Raphael

      The spectrum of what can be defined as health and illness has been progressively changed, by both the recognition of diverse diseases and how they are characterised, and the emergence of new patterns of problems. These new, emergent patterns of distress, impairment, ‘strange’ phenomena and suffering may be those associated with, for instance, a new infectious disease arising from viral mutation, or a new pattern of problems resulting from environmental or other hazards, or with socially driven behavioural change, or existing behaviour newly described, for instance, narcissistic personality disorder. Behavioural changes, whether the result of internally driven processes (such as...

    • Robyn M Gillies

      There is no doubt that the first decade of the twenty-first century has been characterised by an exponential increase in demands for knowledge—technoscientific, medical, social, educational, environmental, and so on—with the clear intention of transforming how we live as individuals and as a society, and of sustaining this transformation. Globalisation has increased the mobility of people, resources, and ideas. This has had an enormous impact on education and the role it must play in fostering the development of creative and informed citizens who are able to participate fully in a dynamic and changing world (Department of Education, Employment...

    • Christine Nixon

      In this chapter I will share my learnings from the past 40 years working with change in the New South Wales Police Service, Victoria Police and the Victorian Bushfire Reconstruction and Recovery Authority. In 2011 Melbourne University Press published my memoirFair cop, with Jo Chandler. Writing this book allowed me time to contemplate my life and perhaps sharpen my reflections on a range of issues and experiences.

      All of us have personal experience of change, or have driven change in our lives, organisations, departments or businesses. These are my lessons.

      I often start my leadership workshops with a clarification...

    • Ian D MacLeod

      Within Australia there are more than 250 practicing conservators who are members of our professional society, the Australian Institute for the Conservation of Cultural Materials (AICCM). Conservators are employed by state and commonwealth archives, art galleries and museums, and 20 per cent of the members of the institute are engaged in private practice (AICCM 2013). For every type of material there is a specialist conservator who knows how to stabilise and preserve elements of our material culture that range from ephemeral art works to plastic furniture and toys to digital media. The world of the conservator is secured by a...

    • Francesca Merlan

      My chapter focuses on change in anthropology, with some comparative references to other social sciences. I illustrate what I have to say through two particular areas of ethnographic research and theorisation—the anthropology of Christianity, and of the contemporary situations of indigenous peoples, particularly in Australia. My treatment is focused, rather than comprehensive; I make no claims to completeness. My view is that, despite its importance, change remains relatively under-conceptualised in these areas, and one of my aims is to encourage greater adequacy among all of us practitioners.

      We may define change as difference in some field, object or relation...

    • Sarah Pearson

      Whilst some of us thrive on change, many people find it threatening. Tension between the Darwinian drive to evolve and our social need to fit in with thestatus quoplays out in industry just as much as in our individual lives. In no situation is this more obvious than the role of innovation within industry, where innovationischange and often requiresusto change just as much as the product or process that is being replaced. Us as employees, and us as consumers. This chapter gives an insight into how industry thinks about change, particularly relating to innovation...

    • Jim Butler

      Perhaps the most succinct definition of economics is that it is the science of scarcity. This is an abbreviation of the fuller definition provided by Lionel Robbins in the 1930s as ‘the science which studies human behaviour as a relationship between ends and scarce means which have alternative uses’ (Robbins 1932, 15). While these definitions appear to be clear and concise, they belie deeper philosophical issues around the nature of the discipline which have been, and continue to be, debated by scholars. For example, Robbins viewed economics as a positive science that concerns itself with understanding facts and analysing ‘what...

    • John Reid

      I begin with a selective chronology with pictures, mainly photographs. Every moment accounts for the state of things in the universe. A photograph is a sample of sequential moments. Photographs that are symptomatic of the times, emblematic of place, or foreshadow historical significance are notable markers in the universal ledger. Photographs, like memories, assist in the comprehension of time and with the perception of change.

      The Australian National University (ANU) radically changed its approach to music education. More than 30 positions at the University’s School of Music were declared vacant in an unprecedented act of academic cleansing. A collective shiver...

  3. Part 3 Synthesis
    • Gabriele Bammer

      The requirement to demonstrate research impact is growing in prominence. It is no longer sufficient for research to provide greater understanding of a problem or issue. Researchers and those who fund them want to see findings used to bring about an improvement. Evaluation of research, and of research organisations, is therefore increasingly focused on measurement of outcomes in terms of policy change, improvement in professional practice, changes in community behaviours and attitudes, and patents and other indicators of commercialisation. This chapter examines research impact and the ability to improve it through the lens of better understanding change.

      The focus of...