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Strategic geometry


Towards Polyhedral Global Governance: complexifying oversimplistic strategic metaphors (Part #2)


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Previously the possibility had been explored of a new "language" through which policies, programmes and institutional structures could be articulated.

In the conventional language, it is typical to see "points" made in a "line" of argument about a subject "area". Such points may be enshrined in policy principles, in programme mandates, or in the departmental structures of organizations intended to implement them. Normally such nested point structures are embedded in linear text (possibly with the aid of an outliner on a text-processor). Typically the only organization structure expressed in graphic form is the hierarchical (pyramidal) organization chart, with all that that has implied. (Geometry of Organizations, Policies and Programmes, 1992 / La Transdisciplinarité et les Volumes: l'articulation des relations entre les disciplines à l'aide des propriétés des polyèdres, 1992)

That exploration highlighted the possibility of:

expressing points and lines in geometric form on the assumption that a coherent policy or organization takes a coherent geometric form. By extending the language beyond "lines", to "areas" and "volumes", it is hoped to enrich the range of possibilities that can be clearly distinguished and discussed. It is also hoped to introduce an extra degree of rigour into understanding of debate, especially where it is common for people to "go on and on" without contributing to the articulation of a larger strategic vision.

With the emergence of a knowledge society, clearly the "volume" metaphor extends both to the notion of a "body" of knowledge and to the "volume" of discourse.