© 2006

Wisdom, Knowledge, and Management

A Critique and Analysis of Churchman’s Systems Approach

  • John P. van Gigch

Part of the C.West Churchman and Related Works Series book series (CWCL, volume 2)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxxvii
  2. Wisdom, Knowledge and Management

  3. Skepticism, Truth, Certitude and Wicked Problems

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 45-45
    2. Bausch K.
      Pages 47-79
    3. Matthews D.
      Pages 105-137
  4. Setting the Tone: The Importance of Ethics

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 139-139
    2. Van Gigch J., Koenigsberg E., Dean B.
      Pages 141-160
    3. Beer S.
      Pages 169-180
  5. Entrepreneurship

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 181-181
    2. Parra Luna F.
      Pages 205-224
  6. New Paradigms: Applications of the Science of Management to Governance and Managerial Practice

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 225-225
    2. Mcintyre-Mills J.
      Pages 227-268
    3. Hammond D.
      Pages 269-278

About this book


In Wisdom, Knowledge, and Management, the 2nd volume of the series: Churchman’s Legacy and Related Works, the editors draw contributions from leading systems thinkers inspired by the works of C West Churchman.

The Systems Approach and Its Enemies (C. West Churchman, 1979) is one of Churchman’s most significant works. In this particular writing he displayed two main tendencies, that he was a Skeptic and that he showed Socratic Wisdom. In Wisdom, Knowledge, and Management, the editors seeks to follow up on these two themes and reveal how modern authors interpret Churchman’s ideas, apply them to their own line of thinking and develop their own brand of Systemics.

Several authors re-interpret Churchman’s thinking and several others apply this holistic discourse to practical applications. It is very significant that the authors are a very cosmopolitan group: hailing from Sweden, Australia, Spain, South Korea, Argentina and USA. Interestingly, the contribution from the South Korean author, Yu Jae E, applies conceptual tools from the French contemporary writer, Deleuze. Additionally, Darek M. Eriksson’s chapter applies the epistemology of Jean-Louis Le Moigne.

Finally, we would like to note that one theme of this volume is to relate modern authors, and in particular Churchman, to ideas spawned two thousands years ago among the Ancient Greeks.

This effort should show the reach of Churchman’s intellectual power and demonstrates cross-fertilization across borders and continents. It could not have happened without the Internet.


Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurship Manager epistemology idea knowledge management politics

Editors and affiliations

  • John P. van Gigch
    • 1
  1. 1.California State UniversitySacramentoUSA

About the editors

John P. van Gigch is the Series Editor for the Book Series Churchman’s Legacy and Related Works which he was instrumental in getting started. van Gigch knew West Churchman as well as his family personally. Churchman wrote an Introduction for van Gigch’s Applied General System Theory which was published in 1974, with a Second Edition in 1978. van Gigch remained close to West Churchman after the latter retired from the University of California-Berkeley. Right to the end, they celebrated several of West’s birthdays together.


Bibliographic information