First Contact with Dina Mehta

Wednesday, April 02, 2003

I find this syuch a helpful concept – any more thinking like this out there?

Conversations with Dina. Great new weblog from India-based qualitative researcher Dina Mehta. It’s filled with interesting insights and links to unusual sources for understanding cultural and social patterns. Dina has an ability to bridge cultural gaps and put complex patterns into understandable terms. Good stuff. Go grab her RSS feed. You’ll be glad you did.

‘Karass’ or’ Granfalloon’ … you choose.Neat piece by Steven Johnson in the April 2003 issue of Discover.  Talks about two types of networks – the self-organising and social ‘karass’ and the more bureaucratic ‘granfalloons’, drawing examples from personal and corporate life. He goes on to describe the role of emerging social mapping software in detecting and mapping social networks – at the workplace in large organisations and in book-buying patterns at Amazon.    Some excerpts :

“Karass is that group of friends from college who have helped one another’s careers in a hundred subtle ways over the years; the granfalloon is the marketing department at your firm, where everyone has a meticulously defined place on the org chart but nothing ever gets done. When you find yourself in a karass, it’s an intuitive, unplanned experience. Getting into a granfalloon, on the other hand, usually involves showing two forms of ID.” […] [“Conversations” with Dina]

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