Publication 1797

Scott B. (2006) Reflexivity revisited: the sociocybernetics of belief, meaning, truth and power. Kybernetes 35(3/4): 308–316. Fulltext at
Purpose: To present sociocybernetic models of observers in interaction with the aim of encouraging reflection on what is good practice in human communication. Design/methodology/approach – Foundational cybernetic concepts of process and product are drawn upon to develop models of belief, meaning, truth and power. Findings: Belief, following Pask and Rescher, is modelled as a coherent, self-reproducing system of concepts. Meaning, following Peirce, is modelled in terms of the pragmatic consequences of holding certain beliefs to be true. The concept of truth is modelled as justified true belief, the classic ideal of the objective sciences. Power is modelled as the pragmatic consequences of socialinteraction. Originality/value – The paper invites the members of the sociocybernetics community to reflect on the reflexive nature of these models and to critically monitor and evaluate the quality of the communication within that community.


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