Visible Thinking: Unlocking Causal Mapping for Practical Business Results / Edition 1

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Causal mapping is a tool that enables you to make sense of challenging situations so that you can get more out of them. A causal map is a word and arrow diagram in which ideas and actions are causally linked with one another through the use of arrows. Typically, only specialists such as physical or social scientists and operations researchers know about causal mapping and the tool is therefore not widely known or its broad applicability understood. Until now there has been no guidance available on how to make use of the tool for more general purposes. This book lets managers understand the theory and practice of causal mapping in layman's terms for use in both individual and group settings. It shows managers how to develop and use action-oriented strategy maps and logic models in business decision making. The authors show how causal mapping can be used as a tool to make sense of challenging situations and develop effective business responses.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470869154
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 8/23/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 396
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 6.00 (h) x 0.81 (d)

Meet the Author

John M. Bryson is a professor of planning and public affairsat the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, MN (USA), and hasheld visiting appointments at the London Business School,University of Strathclyde, University of Oxford and Oxford BrookesUniversity. His research, teaching and consulting interests focuson leadership, strategic management and the design of participationprocesses. He uses causal mapping in much of this work. ProfessorBryson has published ten books and over 80 scholarly articles andbook chapters. He consults widely in the US and UK.

Fran Ackermann is a professor of strategy and informationsystems at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow (UK). She isinterested in working with groups (public or private,multinationals, or small and medium-sized enterprises) on messy,complex, strategic problems and sees causal mapping as afundamental aspect of this work. She has consulted widely bothwithin the UK and in Europe, Australia and the USA. She isco-developer (with Colin Eden) of causal mapping software –both for individual use and for groups – and continues toexplore means of supporting group working through IT. She haswritten extensively in the area, having published three books andover 70 scholarly articles.

Colin Eden is a professor of strategic management andmanagement science at the University of Strathclyde. His majorinterests are in: (1) the processes of strategy making in seniormanagement teams, and (2) the success and failure of largeprojects. He has consulted with the senior management teams of awide range of public and private organizations in Europe and NorthAmerica. In all of these activities he uses causal mapping as apart of the process. He is the author of seven books and over 150scholarly articles in management science and strategicmanagement.

Charles B. Finn is a management professor at the Collegeof Saint Rose, Albany, New York (USA). He has held teaching andmanagement positions at the University of Minnesota and StateUniversity of New York. He has worked as a consultant to private,public and non-profit organizations at local, state and federallevels within the USA and has taught and consulted internationally.He has two interests in mapping: (1) how large, diffuse systems canorganize for everyday challenges and do the necessary strategicthinking to realize competitive advantages, and (2) how to usemapping to encourage personal and organizational learning anddevelopment.

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Table of Contents

About the Authors.

Preface: Creating the Future You Want – Causal Mapping forIndividuals and Groups.

Part I: What Mapping Is and Why and How It Works.

1. What to Do When Thinking Matters.

2. How and Why Mapping Works.

Part II: What Do I Think? A Guide to CognitiveMapping.

3. How not to Miss the Boat.

4. House of the Rising Fun.

5. It’s a Bummer to Be JB.

Part III: What Do We Think? A Guide to Oval Mapping.

6. To Merge or not to Merge – That Is the Question!

7. Small College Hoping not to Get Smaller!

8. Making the Most of our Assets.

9. A Question of Turning Around.

Part IV: Summary and Conclusions.

10. Learning from the Chapters, or How Does This all Fittogether and How Can I Make Use of It?

11. Benefits, Limitations and the Future of Mapping.

Resource A: Glossary of Terms not Defined in the Text.

Resource B: Analysing Causal Maps.

Resource C: A Brief and Selective History of Causal Mapping forFacilitating Thinking and Other Commonly Used MappingTechniques.

Resource D: Additional Resources.

Resource E: Listing of Process Guidelines.


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