By Davydd J. Greenwood, Morten Levin
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Under these conditions, it is hard to conceive how work can create learning opportunities and personal freedom. Unless the conveyer belt system is totally redesigned, there are few possibilities for organizational change. It is doable to produce cars through group-based work, using long work cycles and providing relatively high degrees of freedom to the workers. Volvo, in both the Kalmar and the Thorslanda factories, created such systems. In both examples, it is obvious that a joint social and technological design created an effective production system.
On the American continent, William Torbert ( 1 99 1 , 200 1 ) has been a key figure, and he brings an even stronger focus on personal and emotional aspects of human inquiry. An important strength of this tradition is its openness to other modes of thinking within AR and the ability to integrate new ideas into the body of knowledge that characterizes human inquiry. -based Academy of Management annual meetings. 34 W H AT I S A C T I O N R E S E A R C H ? Conclusions This partial history of AR provides the background for some of the perspectives that have influenced the writing of this book.
The UCLA group organized a 1 4-day training program in Toronto, bringing together people both from Canada and the United States. Levin was amazed to learn that the social system dimensions of work were described and analyzed according to Talcott Parsons's ( 1 95 1 ) positivist pattern variables. Because the Parsonian model is one of the most abstract and nonbehavioral constructions in the field of role theory, it was a singularly inappropriate bridge between technology and social systems analysis.