James J. Keenan, Ph.D. Professor: Communication, Management, Psychology Fairfield University Fairfield, CT 06430 USA
Looked at from above, human work organizations and towns,. cities, and other settlements are like micro-chips through which, and along which, messages flow. The metaphor of the micro-chip seems particularly appropriate for viewing humans-in-organizations with the currency of contemporary cybernetic and information-theoretic emphases as well as historical theories in the organizational sciences. The micro-chip metaphor carries with it many of our understandings and concerns about people and data and the systems that involve both data and humans. -- and this metaphor may be especially appropriate in a conference devoted to human-computer interaction.
This presentation is about a topic that has been receiving much attention recently: the Intellectual Capital [IC] of human [work] organizations. IC is an holistic approach to understanding people-in-organizations and people-as-value, as capital, as resources-in-organizations. IC is a way to conceptualize sometimes hidden system characteristics which need to be designed, developed, renewed, and otherwise managed in socio-technical systems. The general idea of IC can apply to collectivities of any scale or scope, from small groups through work enterprises to settlements, communities, and whole nations, regions and, imaginably, larger organizations. It is also about the intertwined organizational