Managers, Part of the Problem? Changing How the Public Sector Works

By Camaron J. Thomas | Go to book overview

Chapter 1

Living in a Sea Change

And when it does—when, that is, the profession can no longer evade anomalies that subvert the existing tradition of scientific practice—then begin the extraordinary investigations that lead the profession at last to a new set of commitments, a new basis for the practice of science.

—Thomas S. Kuhn, The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

It has been said that we are living between two paradigms—the old and the new, the internal and the external, the scientific and the spiritual, and the physical and the energetic. Two paradigms shape our daily existence, the tension between which push and pull our perceptions of the world and our ability to function in it. The dominant, or old, paradigm is the product of the last two hundred years. Its evidence is all around us. But so, too, is evidence that we are in transition, that we are shifting to and from some thing.

The old paradigm is with us every day. We can see it in the architecture of our cities and our burgeoning suburbs. It’s in our expanding network of highways, our increasingly efficient agricultural systems, our plethora of recreational opportunities, our megagrocery stores. We can see it our economic theory, the global importance of natural and man-made resources and products as the means of trade, and the precept that our future potential for growth is circumscribed by our supply of labor, capital, and raw materials. We’ve created more cures, fundamentally changed the nature of medical care, and extended lives

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