A novel approach to challenging consensus in evaluations: The Agitation Workshop

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dc.contributor.author McAvoy, John
dc.contributor.author Nagle, Tadhg
dc.contributor.author Sammon, David
dc.contributor.editor Sammon, David
dc.contributor.editor Nagle, Tadhg
dc.date.accessioned 2017-12-05T16:21:03Z
dc.date.available 2017-12-05T16:21:03Z
dc.date.issued 2013-06
dc.identifier.citation McAvoy, J., Nagle, T. and Sammon, D. (2013) 'A novel approach to challenging consensus in evaluations: The Agitation Workshop', Electronic Journal of Information Systems Evaluation 16 (1), pp. 45-55, available online at www.ejise.com en
dc.identifier.volume 16 en
dc.identifier.issued 1 en
dc.identifier.startpage 45 en
dc.identifier.endpage 55 en
dc.identifier.issn 1566-6379
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10468/5119
dc.description.abstract As researchers evaluate organisations, projects, and teams, there is a desire for a consensus from those within the organisations who are participating in the research. A common consensual perspective from a team appears to reflect an optimal state where those being evaluated have a common understanding of the current state of events within the context of their environment. The question arises, though, whether an evaluation finding consensus reflects the reality: there are a variety of reasons why a common understanding may be false consensus. Hidden behind this false consensus may be a variety of unaddressed issues which are actually the core of the problem. This paper proposes an evaluation method incorporating the principles of sensemaking and devil’s advocate, where a consensus of perspectives is challenged before they are considered valid. This is achieved in a workshop where participants reflect on their own perception of reality and represent this reality in a matrix of influencing and relevant factors. The individual matrices are then combined and used to highlight disparities in the participants’ perspectives through a single matrix visualisation. Discussion in the workshop then focusses on the areas, highlighted by the matrix, where differences of perspectives are identified. In effect, the consensus presented by those being evaluated will be challenged, and a new common understanding will have to be created. Problems such as groupthink can create a false consensus, and it is proposed herein that the workshop provides a mechanism for challenging this. The objective of the research herein was to determine the feasibility and potential benefits of the proposed workshop. The workshop itself is evaluated in this paper, to determine if it has value. The benefits of such a workshop are described, showing how an organisation went from a false consensus concerning problems within the organisation, to the start of a process to address the real underlying issues. en
dc.description.abstract Proceedings of the 6th European Conference on Information Management and Evaluation - ECIME 2012 held at the University College Cork. Cork, Ireland on 13-14 September 2012 en
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Academic Publishing International Ltd. en
dc.relation.uri http://www.ejise.com/volume16/issue1
dc.rights © 2013 Academic Publishing International Ltd. This Journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. en
dc.rights.uri https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/4.0/
dc.subject Consensus en
dc.subject False consensus en
dc.subject Workshop en
dc.subject Groupthink en
dc.subject Evaluation en
dc.subject Hidden en
dc.subject Sensemaking en
dc.subject Shared understanding en
dc.title A novel approach to challenging consensus in evaluations: The Agitation Workshop en
dc.type Article (peer-reviewed) en
dc.type Conference item en
dc.internal.authorcontactother Tadhg Nagle, Business Information Systems, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland. +353-21-490-3000 Email: t.nagle@ucc.ie en
dc.internal.availability Full text available en
dc.date.updated 2017-12-05T15:40:41Z
dc.description.version Published Version en
dc.internal.rssid 281186742
dc.description.status Peer reviewed en
dc.identifier.journaltitle Electronic Journal of Information Systems Evaluation (EJISE) en
dc.internal.copyrightchecked No !!CORA!! en
dc.internal.licenseacceptance Yes en
dc.internal.conferencelocation Cork, Ireland en
dc.internal.IRISemailaddress t.nagle@ucc.ie en


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© 2013 Academic Publishing International Ltd. This Journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as © 2013 Academic Publishing International Ltd. This Journal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
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