The Logic of Cells

square-50cm-spacer.jpg Noun Cell 1777358

JW's notes (May 2021) were compiled for a text about Organisational Consciousness, written in collaboration with JB. They were inspired by the structural and functional nature of all living organisms. The cell (from Latin cella, meaning 'small room' is the basic structural, functional, and biological unit of living organisms. In biological organisms, the interior components are collectively referred to as the 'cytoplasm'.

Can Managers of Organisations Learn From Cells?

  1. In order to interpret the scientific understanding of cells into a language that managers would understand we assembled them into a questionnaire that would provide a list of cell attributes.
  2. This meant re-imagining biological cells as logical states, rather than as living tissue.
  3. For example, we might visualise a living cell as a mediaeval city that is protected by a perimeter wall that surrounds and protects all of the residents.

Questionnaire Format

These descriptive notes are framed as a questionnaire. This is to make it be applicable (by managers?) in a organisational context.

1.CELLULAR FORM?Is it a set of interdependent agencies inside a semi-permeable membrane?
2.COMPREHENSIVE STRUCTURE?Are its internal parts sufficiently diverse to work as a metabolic system?
3.COHERENCE WITHIN?How well adjusted is it (given the above)? diversity tool / Requisite Variety.
4.CLEAR IDENTITY?How recognisable is it to others?
5.COMMUNICATION QUALITY?What is the quality / bandwidth of its exchanges with others?
6.CIRCULARITY OF ACTION?Is it creating itself via feedback processes? (sympoiesis & Ashby)
7.COOPERATES WITH OTHERS?How collaborative are its ways of working with others?
8.COMPLIANT WITH SHARED FIELD?How well attuned is it to the common field? / maths of network connections
9.CONSCIOUS OF HOW IT IS SEEN?Can it imagine how others might see it? / The Tragedy of the Thermostat
10.CONSCIOUS OF AWARENESSES?Is it aware that it knows / knows that it is aware?
11.COMPOS MENTIS?Does it have command over its own mind?
12.CREDIBILITY CONSCIOUS?Is it reputationally sensitive? (e.g. on an axis of PRIDE <-----------> SHAME)