About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 6156-6157 (abstract only)
Publication year: 2020
ISBN: 978-84-09-17939-8
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2020.1668

Conference name: 14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2020
Location: Valencia, Spain


We are 120 undergraduates in the College of Business at the University of Rhode Island. In groups of three, we set out to understand the meaning of Complex Adaptive Systems [1] over a period of two weeks in digital space, we called The Fishbowl [2]. We found that when constructing meaningful knowledge-content, our effectiveness increased whenever we “engaged” with text and, “expressed” our reflections to each other. As knowledge-workers constructing meaning, our underlying purpose was to add value to the group’s knowing of the subject matter. In sequential steps, our paper presents one group’s journey into their understanding of Complex Adaptive Systems and, constructing meaning for themselves about it.
1. We define ‘engagement’ as “conveying interaction with text outside the group to each other inside the group” [3]. This has two complementary components: we used the world outside the group as a resource for learning and, we used this information to make a positive impact inside the group.
2. We define ‘expressiveness’ as “the public display of symbols or enactment of symbolic action for performative effect” [4].

1. We present 10+1 steps as a way of linking theory and practice so that knowledge can be action based and derived from practice in the real world as opposed to being generated through abstract survey methods.
2. Our method is best described as sorting, sifting and selecting from word-pools to create and construct understandings about the subject matter.
3. Our method is one of abstracting, framing and interpreting text in a social situation; the Fishbowl.
4. Our approach to understanding the subject matter belongs to the social-constructionist school of thought. The idea under-pinning this approach is understanding how knowledge has an unfolding transformative potential and, how the images and ideas we hold of ourselves as knowledge-workers has fundamental impact on how our knowing unfolds in the group. The underlying assumption is the belief that we do make and shape our understanding of the world and have the ability to do so anew.

1. We are 40 groups, three individuals each. In digital space, called the Fishbowl, “we showed ourselves to ourselves” [5]. Every individual played an active role when interpreting the subject matter. As active agents (6), we selected symbols and framed interpretations in 10+1 steps from our own standpoint. Both engagement and expression became performances, that is, “interpretive events.”
2. Organizations have learnt that chasing numbers does not translate into productivity and that linear thinking is archaic. Clearly, functioning effectively as a team is far more valuable than any individual achievement. Our paper makes a difference by restructuring the experience away from individual fact acquisition towards team-building experiences.
3. We see our understanding of the subject matter not as radically new but as recognizing kinship within the group, as well as differences between groups.

[1] Bartlett and Ghoshal, “Managing Across Borders,” (1989).
[2] Howard Rheingold, “Net Smart,” (2014)
[3] Mark Allen Peterson, “Anthropology and Mass Communication,” (2005).
[4] William O. Beeman, “Culture, Performance and Communication in Iran,” (1982).
[5] Clifford Geertz, “The Interpretation of Cultures,” (1973).
[6] John Dewey, “How We Think,” (1933).
author = {Dugal, S. and Singh, S. and Troiano, M. and Singh, R. and Chu, S. and Pusateri, J. and Lopes, A. and Rexter, B. and Falaye, M. and Melby, A. and Milich, E. and Coristine, A. and Audate, A. and Barry, M. and Thibodeau, M. and Katchen, N. and Gustafson, N. and Hausherr, J. and Costanzo, P. and Symons, A. and Logan, Q. and Schiffer, B. and Sousa, C. and Rigoliosi, C. and Hernandez, M. and Kertanis, K. and Salvucci, O. and Reynolds, R. and Repoza, J. and Restrepo, M. and Regalbuto, C. and Trovato, J. and Garcia, D. and Farrales, N. and St.Onge, J. and Flynn, E. and Stone, R. and Howe, M. and Underwood, J. and Stephenson, N. and Volpe, M. and Mollicone, N. and Katzen, Z. and Bahre, F. and Waleyko, M. and Rosa, S. and Olczak, I. and Middrup, N. and Halloran, M. and Gibbons, J. and Costello, O. and Capece, P.},
series = {14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2020 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-09-17939-8},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2020.1668},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2020.1668},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {2-4 March, 2020},
year = {2020},
pages = {6156-6157}}
AU - S. Dugal AU - S. Singh AU - M. Troiano AU - R. Singh AU - S. Chu AU - J. Pusateri AU - A. Lopes AU - B. Rexter AU - M. Falaye AU - A. Melby AU - E. Milich AU - A. Coristine AU - A. Audate AU - M. Barry AU - M. Thibodeau AU - N. Katchen AU - N. Gustafson AU - J. Hausherr AU - P. Costanzo AU - A. Symons AU - Q. Logan AU - B. Schiffer AU - C. Sousa AU - C. Rigoliosi AU - M. Hernandez AU - K. Kertanis AU - O. Salvucci AU - R. Reynolds AU - J. Repoza AU - M. Restrepo AU - C. Regalbuto AU - J. Trovato AU - D. Garcia AU - N. Farrales AU - J. St.Onge AU - E. Flynn AU - R. Stone AU - M. Howe AU - J. Underwood AU - N. Stephenson AU - M. Volpe AU - N. Mollicone AU - Z. Katzen AU - F. Bahre AU - M. Waleyko AU - S. Rosa AU - I. Olczak AU - N. Middrup AU - M. Halloran AU - J. Gibbons AU - O. Costello AU - P. Capece
SN - 978-84-09-17939-8/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2020.1668
PY - 2020
Y1 - 2-4 March, 2020
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2020 Proceedings
SP - 6156
EP - 6157
ER -
S. Dugal, S. Singh, M. Troiano, R. Singh, S. Chu, J. Pusateri, A. Lopes, B. Rexter, M. Falaye, A. Melby, E. Milich, A. Coristine, A. Audate, M. Barry, M. Thibodeau, N. Katchen, N. Gustafson, J. Hausherr, P. Costanzo, A. Symons, Q. Logan, B. Schiffer, C. Sousa, C. Rigoliosi, M. Hernandez, K. Kertanis, O. Salvucci, R. Reynolds, J. Repoza, M. Restrepo, C. Regalbuto, J. Trovato, D. Garcia, N. Farrales, J. St.Onge, E. Flynn, R. Stone, M. Howe, J. Underwood, N. Stephenson, M. Volpe, N. Mollicone, Z. Katzen, F. Bahre, M. Waleyko, S. Rosa, I. Olczak, N. Middrup, M. Halloran, J. Gibbons, O. Costello, P. Capece (2020) ENGAGEMENT AND EXPRESSION: CONSTRUCTING MEANINGFUL KNOWLEDGE-CONTENT, INTED2020 Proceedings, pp. 6156-6157.