Dialogic Design Science

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The theoretical foundation of the Structured Dialogic Design Process Methodology.


The ultimate objective of this "People Science" is to support people from all walks of life for practicing authentic participative democracy by applying the Co-Laboratories of Democracy approach in designing their social systems.

The Domain of Science Model (DOSM), proposed by Professor John N. Warfield in 1987, is being employed as the contextual typology for assigning the component artifacts of the DDS in the four distinct domains of the DOSM, namely: (A)Foundation, (B)Theory, (C)Methodology, and (D)Applications. To view the assignement of the components of DDS to the four distinct domains, and also the linkages among the principal components of the science click:

FOUNDATION The six foundational axioms for dialogic design science are: 1. The Complexity Axiom: Social systems designing is a multi-dimensional challenge. It demands that observational variety be respected when engaging observers in dialogue, while making sure that their cognitive limitations are not violated in our effort to strive for comprehensiveness (John Warfield). 2. The Engagement Axiom: Designing social systems, such as health care, education, cities, communities, without the authentic engagement of the stakeholders is unethical. It results in inferior plans that are not implementable (Hasan Ozbekhan). 3. The Investment Axiom: Stakeholders engaged in designing their own social systems must make personal investments of trust, committed faith, or sincere hope, in order to be effective in discovering shared understanding and collaborative solutions (Thomas Flanagan). 4. The Logic Axiom: Appreciation of distinctions and complementarities among inductive, deductive and retroductive logics is essential for a futures-creative understanding of the human being. Retroductive logic makes provision for leaps of imagination as part of value-and emotion-laden inquiries by a variety of stakeholders (Norma Romm, 2001; 2010). 5. The Epistemological Axiom: A comprehensive science of the human being should inquire about human life in its totality of thinking, wanting, telling, and feeling, like the indigenous people and the ancient Athenians were capable of doing. It should not be dominated by the traditional Western epistemology that reduced science to only intellectual dimensions (LaDonna Harris). 6. The Boundary-Spanning Axiom: Stakeholders act beyond borders to design social systems that enable people from all walks of life to bond across cultural and religious barriers and boundaries as part of an enrichment of their repertoires for seeing, feeling and acting (loanna Tsivacou, 1997).


1. Variety. The Law of Requisite Variety demands that an appreciation of the diversity of perspectives and stakeholders is essential in managing complex situations. The Law of Requisite Variety is attributed to William Ross Ashby. 2. Parsimony. The Law of Requisite Parsimony states that structured dialogue is needed to avoid the cognitive overload of stakeholder/designers. The Law of Requisite Parsimony is attributed to George Miller and John Warfield. 3. Saliency. The Law of Requisite Saliency states that the relative saliency of observations can only be understood through comparisons within an organized set of observations. The Law of Requisite Saliency is attributed to Kenneth Boulding. 4. Meaning. The Law of Requisite Meaning states that meaning and wisdom are produced in a dialogue only when observers search for relationships of similarity, priority, influence, etc, within a set of observations. The Law of Requisite Meaning is attributed to Charles Sanders Peirce. 5. Autonomy and Authenticity. The Law of Requisite Autonomy and Authenticity in distinction-making demands that during the dialogue it is necessary to protect the autonomy and authenticity of each observer in drawing distinctions. The Law of Requisite Autonomy and Authenticity is attributed to Ioanna Tsivacou. 6. Evolution of Observations. The Law of Requisite Evolution of Observations states that learning occurs in a dialogue as the observers search for influence relationships among members of a set of observations. The Law of Requisite Evolution of Observations is attributed to Kevin Dye. 7. Action. The Law Requisite Action predicts that any action plan to reform complex social systems designed without the authentic and true engagement of those whose futures will be influenced by the change are bound to fail. The Law of Requisite Action is attributed to Yiannis Laouris.