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Book part
Publication date: 6 December 2011

Joshua Rust

Purpose – To better understand the relation between Friedrich Hayek's “theoretical psychology” and contemporary connectionist theories of mind.Methodology/approach – There…

Abstract

Purpose – To better understand the relation between Friedrich Hayek's “theoretical psychology” and contemporary connectionist theories of mind.

Methodology/approach – There is much in The Sensory Order that recommends the oft-made claim that Hayek anticipated connectionist theories of mind. To the extent that this is so, contemporary arguments against and for connectionism, as advanced by Jerry Fodor, Zenon Pylyshyn, and John Searle, are shown as applicable to theoretical psychology. However, the final section of this chapter highlights an important disanalogy between theoretical psychology and connectionist theories of mind.

Findings – While Hayek can be construed as a connectionist, it is argued that Hayek's ontological presuppositions are not shared by contemporary theorists of mind. In particular, modern critiques of Hayek's theoretical psychology qua connectionism assume that he attempts to provide an account of the mind within the confines of scientific naturalism. This essay argues that this assumption is false. Hayek's ontological presuppositions are more akin to Kant's, implying that Hayek's question is importantly different from those asked by contemporary theorists of mind.

Originality/value of the chapter – At a certain level of abstraction, a Hayakian machine is not unlike certain versions of a connectionist machine. However, to adequately assess the significance of The Sensory Order on its own terms, Hayek's project must be disentangled from our own ontological preoccupations.

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Hayek in Mind: Hayek's Philosophical Psychology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-399-6

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 1994

Constantin Virgil Negoita

Considers and defends the realist understanding of the notion of fuzzy system, that is, the view that fuzzy functions are ontologically respectable for scientific…

Abstract

Considers and defends the realist understanding of the notion of fuzzy system, that is, the view that fuzzy functions are ontologically respectable for scientific explanations of fuzzy controllers. Looks at the arguments concerned with the revival of fuzzy set theories based on the idea of representation.

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Kybernetes, vol. 23 no. 6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

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Book part
Publication date: 6 December 2011

Don Ross

Purpose – To review the significance of Hayek's argument, in The Sensory Order, from a connectionist theory of mental architecture to descriptive and normative…

Abstract

Purpose – To review the significance of Hayek's argument, in The Sensory Order, from a connectionist theory of mental architecture to descriptive and normative individualism.

Methodology/approach – The chapter reconstructs Hayek's argument, then replaces Hayek's premises about mental architecture with premises derived from the recent neuroscience of reward and consumption, and then explains why the argument no longer goes through.

Findings – Hayek's abstract mental architecture was closer to adequacy than most subsequent competing alternatives produced by philosophers. His argument from this architecture to individualism is valid. However, we must now supplement the abstract architecture with complexities drawn from recent neuroscience. These show the argument to be unsound. However, if commitment to descriptive individualism is abandoned, then a new argument from psychological premises to normative individualism is available.

Social implications – There is a good argument from psychological premises to normative individualism; but normative individualists should not try to defend their position by resting it on the supposed truth of descriptive individualism.

Originality/value – All the main arguments of the chapter are new to the literature.

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Hayek in Mind: Hayek's Philosophical Psychology
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78052-399-6

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Book part
Publication date: 19 August 2017

Knut Ingar Westeren

In the 1990s, von Krogh, Roos, and Slocum (1994) and Venzin, von Krogh, and Roos (1998) began discussions centered around epistemology and knowledge management, focusing…

Abstract

In the 1990s, von Krogh, Roos, and Slocum (1994) and Venzin, von Krogh, and Roos (1998) began discussions centered around epistemology and knowledge management, focusing mainly on the varied sources and backgrounds for knowledge management. Since 2000, we have seen a much wider debate on several issues that are related to the development of a knowledge economy. The main task became the establishing of a conceptual framework for further discussion of epistemological categories, using three keywords: cognitivism, connectionism, and autopoiesis. One objective of this book is to analyze the progression to a more knowledge-based economy by linking these keyword perspectives together, and the intention of this chapter is to present a fundament for these epistemological discussions.

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Human Capital and Assets in the Networked World
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-828-4

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Book part
Publication date: 22 February 2010

Leslie Marsh

This paper conceives of Hayek's overall project as presenting a theory of sociocognition, explication of which has a two-fold purpose: (1) to locate Hayek within the…

Abstract

This paper conceives of Hayek's overall project as presenting a theory of sociocognition, explication of which has a two-fold purpose: (1) to locate Hayek within the non-Cartesian tradition of cognitive science, and (2) to show how Hayek's philosophical psychology infuses his social theory.

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The Social Science of Hayek's ‘The Sensory Order’
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-975-6

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 1991

Alex M. Andrew

The traditional approach to AI is limited because it fails to exploit continuity. The reliance on discrete logic has allowed the rapid initial advance of the subject, but…

Abstract

The traditional approach to AI is limited because it fails to exploit continuity. The reliance on discrete logic has allowed the rapid initial advance of the subject, but constitutes an inherent deficiency. The limitations have become apparent, and are generally acknowledged by a revival of interest in neural‐net, or connectionist, techniques. This approach has become feasible because of technical developments allowing large‐scale parallel operation. Lessons can be learned by considering the evolution of natural intelligence. Recent studies from a biological viewpoint suggest that this has some unexpected features. The idea of concept formation should be extended to include quantifiable concepts, similar to the semantic variables of fuzzy set theory.

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Kybernetes, vol. 20 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0368-492X

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Book part
Publication date: 6 June 2019

Hugo Letiche

What is systemicity and what is its relationship to third-generation cybernetics, will be explored here. I begin where my published work in social complexity theory let…

Abstract

What is systemicity and what is its relationship to third-generation cybernetics, will be explored here. I begin where my published work in social complexity theory let off: What is the benefit of studying experienced emergence versus attributed emergence? And how do we account for researcher reflexivity in the study of emergence? Is systemicity really an ontological given; that is, an inevitability of any rigorous relational position? Or, is it more an accompaniment to a layered (physical, life, social) epistemology? Or, is systemicity an invitation to acknowledge the ontological limits of perception, cognition, and truth? And finally, assuming that systemicity represents third-generation cybernetics, where and how in organizational studies do we recognize our own reflexivity and relation to what we study, to whom we address our ideas, and how we communicate?

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The Emerald Handbook of Management and Organization Inquiry
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-552-8

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Book part
Publication date: 22 February 2010

Francesco Di Iorio

Purpose – To show that The Sensory Order is an original effort to support, on a neurophysiologic basis, methodological individualism.Methodology/approach – Considering…

Abstract

Purpose – To show that The Sensory Order is an original effort to support, on a neurophysiologic basis, methodological individualism.

Methodology/approach – Considering that the mind is a complex and self-organized order, Hayek criticizes methodological holism according to which the cause of action has to be sought outside the individual, in macro-laws governing social wholes. He argues that, due to the nature of the mind, the cause of action has to be sought inside the individual.

Findings – The paper stresses that scholars have more or less neglected a very important point in discussions of the Austrian author's psychology. Hayek's psychology supports the idea that the explanation of the action stems from the understanding of its meaning.

Research limitations/implications – The article only discusses some of the epistemological consequences of Hayek's theory of the mind. For instance, it does not analyze in a detailed way the relationship between this theory and the idea of distributed knowledge. It left an in-depth examination of this issue for subsequent research.

Originality/value of paper – Many authors state that Hayek's version of methodological individualism only examines the non-intentional effects of action, neglecting the importance of Verstehen. They argue that the Austrian scholar is not a complete and coherent champion of methodological individualism. The paper shows that this criticism is unfounded.

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The Social Science of Hayek's ‘The Sensory Order’
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-84950-975-6

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Article
Publication date: 1 April 2001

Gabriele Lakomski

Examines the claim that we need to change the organization’s culture if we want to bring about organizational change. Concerns itself with the mainstream conception of…

Abstract

Examines the claim that we need to change the organization’s culture if we want to bring about organizational change. Concerns itself with the mainstream conception of (organizational) culture, especially in relation to what is called “the paradox of culture”, its twin tendencies towards stability and variability. In the process, the role of the leader and organizational learning are reassessed in their purported causal interrelation. Develops the notion of culture as cognitive process based on recent research in both cultural anthropology and the new cognitive science.

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International Journal of Educational Management, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-354X

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 2001

Leslie Armour

Communication systems are structured by economic forces which use them to optimise sales, and politicians who increasingly live by slogans and repeated sound bites. Both…

Abstract

Communication systems are structured by economic forces which use them to optimise sales, and politicians who increasingly live by slogans and repeated sound bites. Both want people to act without much reflection, and may threaten to turn human beings into imitiations of the computers they use. Theorists first noticed that communication systems channeled goods and services, structured political geography, and created their own pictures of the world. They went on to describe communications devices which act as extensions of human senses. Now communication systems try to structure our inner lives. This paper examines reflective consciousness and its relation to civilisation. It suggests countervailing forces which make for thought and turn the ordinary aspects of life into art.

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International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 28 no. 5/6/7
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

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