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Reviving spirit in corporate systems

Krempl, Sandra (2006) Reviving spirit in corporate systems. Masters by Research thesis, Murdoch University.

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The underlying context of this work is the mismatch between the systems that we need to comply with and what our spirit and intuition wants and needs. The thesis questions the relevance of spiritless corporate systems set up to serve the 'best interest' of human beings and other living things. Corporate systems have been established to comply with governing laws, to facilitate transaction of money and provide financial accountability to stakeholders and clients - spiritless matters. Corporate systems are ill equipped to protect our emotional and spiritual boundaries, our tangible and intangible links to the past and to the future. Spirit, which is the essence of life, is often not understood, discussed or included in the planning, development and implementation of the very systems that govern and impact on our lives and our communities. If spirit is included it is often well intended but rhetorical. Spirit needs to be revived and provided time, place and purpose, not only in our broader lives but also in our work cultures. Without spirit, facts have no meaning or relevance to life.

This thesis searches for solutions to fill this spiritual gap in corporate systems, drawing on the experiences and lessons gained through engaging with communities and corporate systems in Australian and international contexts. The search covers a study of oral tradition(spirit),the impact of the lack of credibility afforded to oral tradition, developing and trialling common-ground terminology and frameworks befitting both corporate and spiritual systems across different industry sectors, the isolation of arts and culture from other sectors, the role of community development arts practices, and aspects of social science and urban development theories.

The research traces the development and implementation of a cultural planning program for Western Australia through policy development at State government level and then framework development undertaken through Community Arts Network WA. The development of this cultural planning program draws on the contribution of diverse industry sector partners and this thesis research explains how their perspectives can contribute to the revival of spirit in corporate systems. The partnerships involved are business planning, town planning, community psychology, vocation, education and training, and sustainability.

Having contributed to the development of the broader frameworks for the implementation of cultural planning across the State and beyond, this research delves further into addressing the issue of reviving spirit in corporate systems through refining the First (spirit) and Third Person (corporate) approach to cultural planning. This method is based on a key Spirit Catalyst called The First and Third Person Systems. This key Spirit Catalyst provides a guide for balance between spirit and corporate systems. There are a total of seven secondary Spirit Catalysts cited. Comparisons and contrasts between First and Third Person cultural planning process and strategic planning are provided. Principles and protocols and tools for evaluating spirit have been developed as part of the process. In keeping with the first person nature of spirit, personal narrative is used wherever possible to give life and meaning to facts and other planning and management processes.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters by Research)
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Institute for Sustainability and Technology Policy
Supervisor(s): Newman, Peter
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