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The Herd Moves? Emergence and Self-Organization in Collective Actors

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Type: Working Paper
Author: Beckenkamp, Martin
Date: 2006
Agency: Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, Bonn, Germany
Series: Preprints of the Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods, 2006/14
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/10535/6332
Sector: Social Organization
Subject(s): collective action
Abstract: "The perplexity about collective actors is part of the focus of this paper. This is why some of the relevant literature about self-organization will be largely ignored, especially literature that discusses the role of self-organization in the context of the mind-brain debate. The consideration of this debate would becloud the line of arguments of greater pertinence to corporate actors, because besides the interesting questions about 'how emergence comes about' and 'how a whole can be more than its parts' the mind-brain debate concentrates on the seemingly irreconcilable gap between the phenomenological mind and the brain, i.e. the relationship between our firstperson view of our feelings, thoughts, etc. and our third-person (natural scientific) view of the processes in our brain (cf. Roth 1987). Philosophers in this context further develop the notion of 'emergence', for instance, by distinguishing between emergence and supervenience. For the sake of clarity and the conclusiveness of the arguments affecting collective actors, this debate is ignored here (an excellent overview of different fundamental philosophical positions and the respective aporia is given in Wiesendanger, 1987)."

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