Examining change: Practice as the central unit of enquiry

Examining change: Practice as the central unit of enquiry

This article was first published by Chris McDermott on Medium, 23rd Sept 2019 The book Dynamics of Social Practice puts forward the idea that practice is the integration of meaning, material and competence and that by using practice as the central unit of enquiry, we can better understand adoption, evolution and continued enactment of practices. One of the examples used, when looking at the adoption and circulation of practice, is Nordic Walking, “a form of walking involving the use of two specially designed poles to increase the intensity of the exercise”. The book illustrates, in this example by considering the meaning of practice, how to help a practice being adopted…

Mapping meaning

This article was first published by Chris McDermott on Medium, 14th February 2019 When running Maturity Mapping sessions with teams and in workshops I ask teams to map the practices they use. What I started to see appear on maps were activities that I didn’t recognise as practices, a number of times “Feedback Loops’ appeared. This didn’t, and still doesn’t, strike me as a practice. I tried to work round this by providing a list of practices both as a starting point and as examples to use, this didn’t go well. I had clearly set tight boundaries on what I thought practice was.…