SIGIA-L Mail Archives: RE: cost justifying therapy (was SIGIA-L
RE: cost justifying therapy (was SIGIA-L: does it have to depend?)
From: Louis Rosenfeld (lou_at_louisrosenfeld.com)
Date: Wed Oct 17 2001 - 14:10:02 EDT
Christopher Fahey [askrom] wrote:
> [stuff deleted]
> But as far as ROI goes, today's psychologists and psychiatrists have,
> AFAIK, plenty of hard numbers to prove how their work makes people more
> productive, less prone to violence, able to control addiction, etc. The
> field has come a long way, and yes it is rooted in quackery, but then
> again Pythagoras was a cult leader and Isaac Newton practiced astrology.
That's great news; that's what I get for not taking those psych classes in
college... More importantly, can you (or anyone) point to some of that hard
> > Dell or anyone else: is there a useful analogy here that
> > might help IAs better justify their value? Or must we await
> > the appearance of a Freud or some other charismatic figure to
> > educate the world for us?
> I think the analogy between psychology (a therapeutic tool) and IA (a
> design tool) is kinda poor in the first place. It's valid insofar as
> psychology spent many many years as a pseudo-science before finally
> graduating into becoming, for the most part, a recognized scientific
> practice. But must we see IA as a tool for fixing problems, or can we
> simply see it as a tool for building effective things?
Why not both? My feeling that IA as a form of organizational therapy comes
from two things: 1) Years of being approached by clients who have presented
me with frustrating problems, often emotionally tinged; and 2) my own
personality lends itself to a therapeutic approach to consulting. Because
#2 has to do with my personal consultative style, I wouldn't recommend it
for all IAs, but it is potentially a useful and certainly valid approach
> Wasn't it you, Louis, who discouraged metaphor as an IA tool? Perhaps IA
> isn't exactly 'like' anything.
Not exactly. I've discouraged the use of metaphor as the basis of an
information architecture, especially back in the mid-'90s when metaphors
seemed to be the rage. (Although good metaphors have their place in IA
design.) Here I'm looking for a metaphor that will help us *sell*, not
perform, IA. In other words, if a client is already shelling out for
consulting in "fuzzy" areas like organizational dynamics, better
interpersonal communications, Meyers-Briggs testing, and other approaches
intended to address organizational maladies, why not IA?
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: Sun Nov 23 2003 - 22:54:50 EST