Intervention, Change and Consequence

Overview

Trying to change human behaviour seems to have become apandemic of our times. A Change Industry has developed, with beneficial objectives and strong moral standards but which uses processes that are to a large extent accepted as articles of faith. Literature designed to bring about intentional change in people abounds but the actual concept of 'change' has received comparatively little attention. Without definining what we mean by 'change' it is difficult to assess the validity of change processes. Evidence ...
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Overview

Trying to change human behaviour seems to have become apandemic of our times. A Change Industry has developed, with beneficial objectives and strong moral standards but which uses processes that are to a large extent accepted as articles of faith. Literature designed to bring about intentional change in people abounds but the actual concept of 'change' has received comparatively little attention. Without definining what we mean by 'change' it is difficult to assess the validity of change processes. Evidence quoted - except in certainly clearly defined and very limited areas - is based upon subjective opinion and rarely on repeatable forms of measurement. Tom Douglas is one of the world's leading writers on groupwork and processes and has written and taught extensively on changing human behaviour. Here he examines what intentional change processes essentially are and places them in relation to the natural development of human change and to the question of consequences. The most important outcomes of social intervention tend to be those that were never anticipated. His principle theme concerns the ignored peripheral and major consequences of intervention in the lives of people, as individuals or as members of groups or organizations. This will be a controversial but scholarly book, challenging practitioners of change, their approach and their claims. It asks them to be more aware of the limitations that exist in attempting to affect change; to be more precise in their definition of change; to be more realistic about base claims for effectiveness and to be more vigilant about consequences. As Tom Douglas points out, more realism means more effective outcomes.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781853433764
  • Publisher: Free Association Books Limited
  • Publication date: 1/19/1997
  • Pages: 300

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements
1 Introduction: Reasons for Writing this Book - its Structure and Use 1
2 The Universal Nature of Change 15
3 The Concepts and Practice of Intended Change 25
4 The Forms of Intended Change 37
5 Internally and Externally Organised Change 48
6 Issues and Problems 58
7 The Individual: the Essential Target 71
8 Groups, Organisations and Situations as Indirect Approaches 85
9 The 'Agents' of Change 96
10 Issues and Problems 110
11 'Necessary' Intervention 119
12 The Data Bases of Intervention 134
13 The Theoretical Assumptions About the Sources of Behaviour 148
14 Methods of Intervention (1) Individual Focus 165
15 Methods of Intervention (2) Group Focus 176
16 Methods of Intervention (3) Special Groups and Organisations 187
17 Issues and Problems 196
18 Consequences, Probability and Prediction 211
19 The Effects of the Quality of Data 220
20 The Effects of Change Agents 235
21 Unforeseen Developments and Ripple Effect 242
22 Resistance, Reversion Effects and Maintenance Processes 250
23 Issues and Problems 262
24 Conclusions 272
References 283
Index 287
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