Тарас Плахтій

Динамічні мережі. Теорія та технологія.

Political Organisation as a Result of Development of the Subjectivity of a Large Group

Plakhtiy, Taras, Political Organisation as a Result of Development of the Subjectivity of a Large Group (June 30, 2016). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2892798

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Abstract: Based on Roberto Assagioli’s model of personality, a model of the collective subject in the archetypal dimension was developed, and its basic parameters were determined in the process of its creation. In particular, it was found that the role of the collective conscious for such a subject is performed by a communication platform, where those involved in interaction can focus on objects located there. Important factors that contribute to and restrict the functioning of such a communication platform include the number of participants, intensity and duration of their interaction.

The key factor that determines the direction of the synchronisation processes of mental activity of individual members of the base community is the nature of relationship of their interaction positions resulting from their formal and informal group statuses. The biological nature of people launches and supports the process of their status ranking, which leads to regression of the collective subjectivity of the group to the individual subjectivity of its leader.
This led to the conclusion that a necessary condition for the creation of subject political organizations as a part of larger groups is the availability of safeguards that do not allow them to transform into a crowd. Thus, communication platforms can be seen as an intermediate link that connects a real collective subject and its model developed by us, and makes it possible to modify its qualities by organizational tools and their corresponding social technologies.
To successfully construct subjective political organisations – i.e. social model multi-intelligent systems consisting of large groups of people – based on the presented model and analysis of its basic aspects, we developed the variable structure – dynamic network and a corresponding integral set of social technologies of organisational activity. The dynamic network integrates the method of brainstorming, cross-group method and technologies of project management.

Keywords: archetype, archetypal mechanisms, collective subjectness, political organizations, communication platform, dynamic network, intelligence multiplier.

One of the most important tasks the contemporary Ukrainian society is faced with involves building effective and efficient organisations in all areas of its life because of the imminent transition to the economy of the 4th-6th technological paradigms.

From a systems perspective [1], such organisations should be built as multi-intelligent social model systems that possess collective subjectivity, as opposed to the currently dominant biological model organisations with one mind and still common mechanistic model organisations with external mind. Undoubtedly, the spread of multi-intelligent social model organisations will be rather lengthy and will autogenously take off in high-tech business corporations. However, in our view, a prerequisite for the accelerated development of Ukrainian society involves construction of new subjective political parties or reorganisation of the existing ones so that they attain subjectivity; for these are the institutions that under the Constitution of Ukraine form the elected and executive bodies at all levels.

Creating multi-intelligent social model political organisations with collective subjectivity requires appropriate social technologies, which, in turn, should be based on the results of scientific research into the nature of such systems, revealing the relations among their intelligent elements, mechanisms for harmonisation of interests and positions of these elements, coordination of their further collective movement in an agreed direction.

Interdisciplinary research of collective organisational subjects involves selecting the most suitable model able to integrate disparate ideas about them from the perspective of each individual discipline into a multifaceted holistic image, as well as reveal the totality of the key aspects of such subjects and interdependence between them.

In our previous publication on this subject [2], we resorted to the multi-dimensional model of personality of the Italian doctor and philosopher Roberto Assagioli [3], who summarised much of the earlier research and advances in the area of human psychology from different angles (Figure 1, A). Being far from perfect and complete, it nevertheless provided a more meaningful and realistic a model than previous ones. This model of the structure of the human inner world includes, harmonises and brings together results of various observations and experiments.

One of the first scholars to systemically study collective subjects was Gustave Le Bon [4]. In his view, moral and intellectual characteristics that together express the soul of the people constitute a synthesis of its past, the legacy of its ancestors and motives of its behaviour. In some individuals of the same ethnic group, they seem to be just as volatile as facial features, but more persistent and careful observation reveals that most individuals of the same ethnic group always have a certain number of general psychological characteristics as durable as the anatomical features used to classify species. Just like the latter, such psychological characteristics are reproduced by the mechanisms of heredity with admirable precision and stability. This aggregate of common psychological characteristics constitutes the phenomenon dubbed the national character. According to Le Bon, whatever man does, he is always first and foremost a representative of an ethnic group, i.e. a historical community that did not emerge merely by coincidence. They may also vary in ethnic, religious, linguistic, age and other cultural characteristics. The stock of ideas and feelings brought to the world by all individuals of the same ethnic group makes up the soul of the people. Invisible in its essence, the soul is well visible in its manifestations, for in reality it governs the evolution of the people. According to Le Bon, the unity of feelings, ideas, beliefs and interests created by way of slow hereditary accumulation makes the psychological constitution of a people very similar and very solid, providing it at the same time with a huge force.

In fact, we are talking about the societal psyche through which society can identify with itself. It is the object of research of Olena Donchenko and Eduard Afonin – the founders of the Ukrainian school of Archetypal Studies. They see it as a structural model of the historical and cultural complex of societal attitudes and patterns of behaviour and perception of the world that performs the unconsciously regulatory function in the life of society [5, 6, 7].

Studying these processes in sociology, the French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu introduced the notion of habitus as a combination of strong acquired dispositions intended to function as principles that generate and organise practices and representations objectively adapted to achieve certain results, but do not involve a deliberate focus on these results and do not require special skills [8]. Habitus is a holistic system of dispositions of perception, evaluation, classification and action based on experience and individual internalisation of social structures and unconscious in its nature. Habitus is the result of personal history and social experience of the individual. Action develops on the basis of a subjective evaluation of objective opportunities, a combination of the desirable and the possible.

The fundamental point is that the habitus is integral and cannot be decomposed into individual components of its disposition, since it expresses a single general principle that manifests itself in all the practices of the individual and can be transposed from one area to another orchestrating their mutual consistency. The habitus takes shape based on the environment; therefore, similar conditions or positions of the individual generate a similar habitus of group/class members. Thus, a social class is a class of similar conditions as well as a class of individuals with a similar habitus. Consequently, practices of group members are from the start harmonised due to the similarity of the habitus, which acts as a foundation for spontaneous solidarity.

By introducing the concept of habitus, Bourdieu tries to remove the traditional sociological opposition of the social structure and personal individual practices: on the one hand, the habitus includes internal schemes of perception, assessment, classification and activity of an individual; on the other hand, it encompasses internalised social relations learned and adopted by social agents.

Of special importance is the assumption that the habitus ensures reproduction of social institutions: the structure of an institution is embedded in the internal structure of the individual and is subsequently reproduced in his/her future practices. The habitus makes the individual congruent with the existing social structures by generating practices and ideas so that they turn out to be objectively adapted to the social relations that produce them. Not only does the habitus ensure reproduction, but also a variability of the social structure in the individual’s practices, because it determines the practices indirectly, through pre-set coercion, constraints, perceptions of the possible, the probable and the impossible.

The interdisciplinary approach to the issue under discussion gives rise to terminological inconsistencies; the most critical of them being the understanding of the very concept of collective subjectivity.

The Russian social psychologist Igor Sushkov in his book [9] makes a distinction between the objects of two scientific disciplines: general psychology, which considers the person as a subject of activity; and social psychology, focused on the person as a subject of social and psychological relations. According to him, the realisation of human relationships is aimed primarily at creating collective subjects of the social system as a result of human communication and social exchange between people. According to the author, it is due to the ability to self-organise that the subject becoming part of the social system transforms it, sets it apart among the other systems, and gives an impetus to its preservation as well as further development. His approach to the analysis of collective subjectivity is based on the thesis that the basic unit of analysis of the collective subject is activity-mediated interpersonal relationships, and by describing these relations we actually describe the collective subject. From this perspective, any social group studied by a researcher of social processes serves primarily as a collective subject of relationships. The author concludes that the subjectivity of both a social group and an individual consists in the fact that they do not just comply with the demands of the outside world – they in their individual way resolve conflicts arising between the community, the individual and reality.

At the same time, our understanding of the collective political subject stems from another approach based on the definition of subjectivity inherent in economic systems suggested by the Ukrainian scholar Bohdan Miziuk [10]. The organisational political subject is an active multi-intelligent social organism with senses, consciousness and will, able to reproduce itself over a long time, learn and change the world: to adequately perceive information from the internal and external environments; to process and analyse it in a rational plane; to understand its own interests; to cyclically implement regulatory planning for their realisation, consisting in an open choice of means, objectives, goals and ideals; and to deliberately act in accordance with the developed and adopted plans.

Practical approaches to creating subject organisations are considered within the theory of social technologies [11]. According to their position in society, these technologies can be viewed from four angles: as social institutions (i.e. the most rational forms of organisation of people’s joint activity); as social processes (i.e. targeted transformations of social phenomena in space and time); as socially transformative activity aimed at transforming social objects on the part of its subjects; and as social systems (i.e. coherent social structural and functional entities). Thus, any social technology, combining these four aspects, is a kind of a conglomerate of such entities, which means it is simultaneously a social institution with its regulatory system, a social process that unfolds stage-by-stage, socio-transforming activity aimed at the planned transformation of social objects, phenomena and processes, and finally a structurally and functionally distinct social system.

The aim of the publication is to create a model of collective subjectivity of organisations in archetypal terms and to determine its basic aspects that can provide the foundation for constructing a coherent set of social technologies of functioning of political organisation subjects.

To create a model of the collective subject we will make some changes to R. Assagioli’s model of personality (see Fig. 1, B).

Let us assume that the middle unconscious contains two main components. One of them – the individual unconscious – is in direct contact with the field of the conscious and includes unique mental components of an individual (memory, personal experience, acquired set of competencies, etc.), while the other component includes mental constituents that contain concentrated and generalized historical experience of an ethnic group, nation, and civilisation. Therefore, we will assume that for an individual within a given society his/her field of the conscious and the individual unconscious is unique.

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Figure 1. Scheme of personality by Roberto Assagioli (A) and its simplified version (B).

 

All the other components of the unconscious in Roberto Assagioli’s model (including the collective unconscious) will be considered as components of the integral unconscious, which, together with the second part of the middle unconscious (the unconscious of the societal psyche) is identical for all individuals in a society. Thus, a group of individuals of one society of any size are “immersed” in the identical integral unconscious – it covers all its members. This view correlates well both with Le Bon’s concept of the national character and the concepts of the societal psyche and habitus.

This approach makes it possible to create a model of the collective subject by placing the fields of the conscious of its elements – individuals with their individual unconscious – in the common integral unconscious (Figure 2).

 

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Figure 1. Model of the collective subject

 

The community whose members make up a collective subject will be denoted as the base community. In this study, we consider a base community made up by individuals who belong to one ethnic group, nation or civilisation, i.e. they are holders of the same components of the unconscious of the societal psyche of the relevant level.

The proposed model correlates well with the ideas of Le Bon of the psychology of crowds, including his “psychological law of the spiritual unity of the crowd”, which refers to the fact that in certain circumstances gathering of people acquires entirely new features that differ from those that characterise individuals who participate in this gathering [4]. The conscious personality disappears, and the feelings and ideas of the individual units making up the crowd tend to acquire a common direction. Le Bon argued that it was the way of emergence of a collective soul, which is, of course, temporary but has rather distinct features. The gathering in such cases is what he called an organised crowd or animated crowd making up one creature that obeys the law of the spiritual unity of the crowd. Thus, according to Le Bon, an animated crowd is a temporary body that emerged from heterogeneous elements that united for a moment, just like cells in a living body unite and thereby constitute a new creature that has properties that differ from those held by each cell individually. Besides, Le Bon believed that such crowds could consist even of several people who gather together and lose their ability to think critically, which they all possess when alone.

The fields of the conscious of individual members of the base community are united in one way or another within a common communication platform, where they exchange information. The features of this exchange are researched in detail within the general theory of communication and its numerous scholarly disciplines. In this study, we substantiate our assumption that it is the structure of the communication platform that determines the external features of large groups of people united by an arbitrary idea or purpose.

We will identify the key aspects underlying and deploying the essence of the proposed model of the collective subject:

  1. The psyche of individual members of base communities of any size contains the integral unconscious that is identical for all of them. Its presence is a natural feature of all human societies, which makes possible the emergence and existence of collective subjectivity as an emergent property of the life of base communities. Thus, the emergence of a collective subject is a result or a product of the life activity of the basic community. This correlates well with the vision of I. Sushkov [9], who considers the collective subjectivity as a result of establishment of a set of socio-psychological relationships between the elements of a social system, formed during their joint activities.

 

  1. A necessary condition for the emergence and existence of a collective subject is the availability of a regular communication platform as a field of the collective conscious of the base community that brings together some segments of the fields of the conscious of its individual members. Within this platform, the community members periodically focus on the same mental objects (images, ideas), and the level of its organisation depends on the availability, reliability and efficiency of feedback, providing an opportunity for each of its members to moderate its content and get temporary access to the individual unconscious (memory, experience, competence) of other members.

Our simultaneous belonging to many groups of varying size that overlap or comprise each other suggests the imposition or overlapping of subjectnesses, which results in the formation of plural identities of the members of modern society.

 

  1. Collective subjectivity arises from the synchronisation of part of conscious and unconscious mental processes of individual members of the base community. This means that the emergence and existence of a collective subject is due to the ability of individual members of the base community to (independently or under the influence of certain external or internal factors) synchronise the concentration of their attention on certain real or virtual objects within their joint communication platform and change the information content of the platform by broadcasting there perceived objects from their own individual and integral unconscious. In turn, the synchronised fields of the conscious of the base community members trigger synchronisation of the activation processes of the resonant archetypes of the integral unconscious into which all interaction participants are “immersed”, actualisation and realisation of the values corresponding to these archetypes, which together statistically determines their choice of similar behavioural patterns and strategies.

The model and archetypal mechanisms of such synchronisation are presented in our study [2].

 

  1. The level of organisational complexity, format and timing parameters of operation of the communication platform as a collective conscious field of the base community determine the effectiveness and efficiency of synchronisation of the mental processes of its individual members and determine the level of development and basic qualities of the collective subject that emerges as a result of operation of this community .

Thus, base communities can generate collective subjects of different levels of development and with different qualities, determined by organisational tools and social technologies used to organise the interaction of individual members of these communities.

 

  1. The key factor that determines the direction of the synchronisation processes of the mental activity of individual members of the base community is the nature of their interaction positions that stems from their formal and informal group status.

We believe that in this context we should focus on two opposite relations: 1) that of the interaction positions of “equal-to-equal”, typical of the pre-conflict stage of group development; 2) and that of the positions of “leader-to-subordinate”, typical of the conflict stage (Figure 3, for a more detailed description see below – in para. 10). Each pair of these positions activates different archetypes of the integral unconscious in the psyche of interaction participants, who, in turn, actualise their corresponding values that significantly affects the probability that these members will opt for certain behavioural patterns and strategies.

 

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Figure. 3. The impact of the group dynamics in a small group on the structure of the communication platform and subjectivity regression

 

The transition from the “equal-to-equal” interaction position to that of “leader-to-subordinate” is a result of the natural group dynamics, it emerges at the conflict stage, firms up at the further stages of group development and leads to regression of its collective subjectivity – i.e. reduction of the subjectivity base from the entire group to one leader. Theoretical, methodological and technological approaches to stabilisation and retention of the interaction of members of large groups in the “equal-to-equal” positions are described in our publications [12, 13, 14].

If the positions of interaction of all community members are identical, their mental activity is synchronised based on the same archetypes, which actualises the same values, based on which during their stay in the community they opt for identical behaviour patterns and strategies.

If the positions of interaction of all community members vary and make up the functional pair of “leader-to-subordinate”, their mental activity is synchronised based on antagonistic pairs of archetypes, which actualises different values, based on which during their stay in the base community they opt for the opposite behaviour patterns and strategies. This triggers cognitive dissonance in the psyche of the collective subject distributed among the members, which in this or that way disrupts its integrity and adequacy.

The above-mentioned archetypal mechanisms of choosing a behavioural response to external challenges were described in more detail in our model of archetypal management of social systems [12].

This view correlates well with the situational approach of social psychology developed by American scholars L. Ross and R. Nisbett in their book [15]. The authors argue that the interaction position of individuals is formed and systematically reproduced in appropriate interaction situations with their contexts that determine their choice of behavioural patterns and strategies that are the most appropriate for these contexts and situations.

 

  1. The integral unconscious of the base community is uninterrupted in time. Meanwhile communication platforms at base communities always exist in a physically discontinuous (discrete) mode, which calls into question the very possibility of existence of collective subjects. For example, the employees of business enterprises and public institutions interact daily during working hours; general meetings of the members of units of political organisations may last for a few hours each month; the crowd is subject to the hypnotic influence of a charismatic leader for an even shorter period; while individuals join in the communication platform of the community, nation, or civilisation only during their “connection” to the mass media of an appropriate type and level. That is why the continuity of existence of the communicative platform of a specific base community stems from the presence in the psyche of the participants of its image maintained there for some time. Obviously, if there is no “connection” to the communication platform for a long time, it in all cases results in a blurring of the virtual image of the community and reduction of its impact on the choice of behavioural patterns and strategies.
  2. Sushkov in his book [9] defines the image as a bridge between the world of the object and the world of the subject that harmonises them with a view to maintaining social cohesion. The image includes not only and not so much the result of appropriate analysers. The image, as a result of perception, includes what became visible and at the same time set by the subject itself. It reflects both the system of relations of the object’s elements and the perceiving subject status in accordance with its needs. It can refer both to the image of the object that appeared just before the subject, and to the product of the past modelling of the world imagined by the subject. The image isolates and integrates all the essential elements realised in the relationship between the subject and the object. Therefore, it becomes a universal basis for harmonisation of human perception of reality with the objective reality. I. Sushkov argues that for the continuity of life of the social subject, the general social content of the image must be present in the form of appropriate structural elements of the relationships of the subject. He offers a three-component approach to the structure, which under such circumstances includes cognitive, emotional and behavioural aspects of human relationships.

Thus, the image of the community moulded and stored in the psyche of community members can actualise and maintain the activity of related archetypes and corresponding values, which can for quite a long time keep up an appropriate framework for the members’ behaviour in between the periods of their collective interaction within the community – for example, during their stay in other groups that activate other sets of archetypes and values in current situations. In this case, the individual’s choice of behavioural patterns and strategies in a particular situation is probabilistic in nature and derives from the level of activation of the corresponding archetypes by the two communities and the combined influence of human relationships associated with images of these communities.

 

  1. The conscious group “I”, in our opinion, represents a point of self-awareness of the base community as a holistic subject. This point is immersed in the flow of the senses of the communication platform or its virtual image as a collective field of the conscious of the base community. After its appearance, it exists in the members’ psyche for quite a long time; hence, we can identify its perception with the perception of integration in the context of the methodology of I. Adizes [16].

He elaborates on this concept based on the existence of a constant human need of belonging to a community. Adizes argues that such a need is always there; it generates permanent and continuous relationships between people and does not require additional energy. According to him, such interconnectivity, in fact, gives rise to goals, which he describes as the result or the process a person wants to achieve in some time. That is to say, goals are the result or consequence of our interconnectedness that has always existed. The author argues that we live thanks to our consciousness and the way we use our interconnectedness to achieve goals, which makes our lives meaningful.

According to Adizes, the stronger our consciousness and the more we are aware of our interconnectedness with what is happening around us, the more meaning we give to our lives. Moreover, the “around us” can stretch for thousands of miles covering atrocities that take place in far-away countries. According to Adizes, the more aware we are, the more we realise our interconnectedness, the more we understand that we have a common goal in our existence. The more we are integrated with our environment, the more we all feel like an integrated whole with this environment, the more fulfilling our life is. To live is to help others and get help from them, to be consciously independent and to be part of the whole. The author concludes that the larger this general whole is, the “bigger” we are.

 

  1. The higher “I”, in our opinion, is a collective subjectivity as a supra-system entity arising as an emergent property of the life of base communities. This subjectivity is identical to the higher “I” of each member of the community; and according to the vision of Roberto Assagioli [3], it is above the stream of thoughts and the physical position of the communication platform – they cannot affect it. The conscious group “I” as a feeling of interconnectivity and belonging might be viewed as a reflection or projection of the higher “I” onto the collective field of the conscious of the group, i.e. the communication platform. It is practically impossible to directly identify the existence of the higher “I”, just like brain neurons have no idea of its existence, or like an individual ant has no idea about building an ant nest. Each individual in the community seeks to know and to merge with the higher “I”.

Thus, we can assume that the higher “I” of an individual is identical with the higher group “I” of communities of different size, making it an integrating factor of all humankind. The higher “I”, in our opinion, has the holographic ability to be identically reflected both by one man and by human communities of any size, including all humanity.

In this context, solving the above problem of creation of subject organisations involves moulding a conscious group “I” as the clearest and the most distinct possible projection of the higher “I” onto the collective field of the conscious by establishing a communication platform using appropriate organisational tools and social technologies.

 

  1. The image of a particular base community in the psyche of its members typically consists of two rather independent components. The first component is the meaningful and notional content as a single informational logical module [2]; by changing this component one can manage base communities as social systems based on goals [17]. The second component is the organisational culture formed on the basis of the chosen organisational structure, as a set of algorithms and rules of interaction of individual members of the base community. These rules and algorithms determine the nature, the emotional focus, uniformity and orderliness of the socio-psychological relationships formed during the interaction of the members of the base community. Changes of the organisational culture always result from the restructuring of the social system, which can be viewed as its management based on the structure [17], which changes its emergent properties, i.e. the main external qualities.

 

  1. Seizure or usurpation of the communication platform occurs in base communities as a result of the natural process of ranking of the statuses of its members, which determines the location of subjectivity in their leaders. Small groups are the primary platform for status ranking and, respectively, the location of subjectivity in leaders. Ranking of small groups within large groups of any size essentially reproduces the ranking of contenders for leadership in small groups. It, in fact, occurs due to location of subjectivity of the latter in their leaders who identify with these groups [18] and act at the intergroup level in the same way as within their own groups, thus manifesting their biological nature.

The location of subjectivity of the base community in its leader results in a dysfunction of its communicative platform due to the fact that the leader establishes his sole control of the processes of information flow within the group and access to it, which enables him to manipulate alternatives and causes systemic passivation and atomisation of rank-and-file members. Identical processes occur at the intergroup level, and their results (for instance in political parties) are described as the effects of Michels’ “iron” law of oligarchy.

The process of location of the small group subjectivity is presented in Figure 3.

At the short-term introduction stage, group members interact from the “equal-to-equal” position and have the same opportunity to influence the content of the group collective conscious because they all have equal access to the common communication platform.

At the clique formation stage, the candidate for leadership in the group establishes a communication platform for his micro-group – i.e. a clique, which provides the basis the acquisition of its own subjectivity and is under his absolute control, which enables him to form a group framework and manage the other members of the clique. In fact, at this stage the small group communication platform starts developing a dysfunction because its members get to interact in this platform indirectly, through the leaders of the cliques they belong to. At the conflict stage, the winner appears – the informal leader of the group, to whom the majority of its members submit after the recognition of his leadership and destruction of the remaining cliques. The other contenders for the informal leadership in the group who disagree with this result quit it.

After a brief phase of rule-making, group work is stabilised, and the level of dysfunction of its communicative platform depends on the winner’s type of leadership. However, in any case, the subject of a small group at the stage of stabilisation is its leader, who usually exerts his absolute power within the groups through his own clique.

Therefore, the subjectivity of a small group is located in its leader – he “lugs” away the communication platform for himself, moderates its content and sets restrictions for other members with regard to influence on its content, perceiving their unauthorised activity as an encroachment on his leadership status.

This suggests that interpersonal and intergroup conflicts as a tool for ranking candidates for informal leadership constitute the main cause of dysfunction of communication platforms in base communities, which causes narrowing of the range of holders – i.e. regression of the collective subjectivity in the process of operation of the community.

In our publications [12], we demonstrated that the maintenance of group members within the interaction positions of “equal-to-equal” is only possible at the pre-conflict stage of their development, namely as a result of the establishment of their dynamic equilibrium and consequently a quasi-stable state at the clique formation stage.

 

  1. Communities of different size are informally (not in a directive way, without direct coercion, through “soft” power) managed in a different way.

Small groups are managed by informal leaders who have absolute power over all other their members.

Physically grouped crowds numbering from a few individuals are easily managed by charismatic leaders who hypnotise and compel them by expressing controlling ideas.

Large physically dispersed groups are for a long time controlled through complex sets of logically structured ideas based on myths and beliefs that naturally arise from the societal psyche and represent concepts, ideologies, religions, and world-views, and are periodically transmitted in one way or another to the members of these groups by authorised holders of an appropriate institutional status.

In the information society, masses are controlled via the kaleidoscopic change of fleeting virtual images formed and structured in a way that can influence people’s behaviour and ensures a statistically determined outcome of their choice in the given areas of life.

This suggests that political subjects within large groups should be capable of collective critical thinking and have protection mechanisms against usurpation of power by informal leaders in its units within small groups, as well as against conversion into a crowd managed by charismatic leaders or institutionally – by broadcasting ideas. Moreover, these mechanisms should operate automatically, ensuring self-governance and development of such subject and its autopoiesis – i.e. continuous self-reproduction in the environment.

 

  1. By analysing the model of the collective subject (Fig. 2), we can conclude that the communication platform as a field of the collective conscious can safely operate only in small groups of up to 12-15 people. Excessive number of the community members “connected” to the communication platform causes its dysfunction, which manifests itself in the inability to discuss tasks and seek solutions to problems of the community without leaders with their own cliques or external moderators who streamline interaction and can significantly influence jointly produced solutions by manipulating alternatives.

This sets quantitative limits on subject organisations and makes it possible to assume collective subjectivity only for organisations composed of small groups, which is consistent with the concept of the “tragedy of the commons” [19] and results of research into the logic of collective action [20]. Overcoming this limitation will make it possible to build subject political organisations consisting of large groups.

 

 

* * *

The results of analysis of the above model suggest that there are three fundamentally different types of collective subjectivity, whose research is based on various scientific approaches and their formation requires different organisational tools and corresponding social technologies.

The first and the simplest type of collective subjectivity is individual subjectivity; it is this type of subjectivity that Assagioli’s model represents. This subjectivity is formed naturally in all organisations as a result of ranking triggered by the biological nature of their members.

The second type of collective subjectivity is vested in small groups able to form and maintain for quite a long time a sustainable and functional communication platform (Figure 2). The subjectivity of small groups during their operation (its length depends on the type of leadership realised in this group) naturally regresses to the subjectivity of an individual – its informal and/or formal leader (Figure 3).

The third type of subjectivity is inherent in multi-intelligent social model systems [1] that bring together large groups of people. Their basic purpose of existence is to coordinate the interests of large group members and streamline the movement in an agreed direction. This type of subjectivity was implemented in practice only in a small number of business organisations representing economic systems of the 4th-6th technological paradigms.

All attempts to build a political organisation with the third type of collective subjectivity inevitably ended in the natural ranking of the statuses of their members and units in the process of intra-group and intergroup conflicts, which triggered regression of the claimed collective subjectivity of the third type to the collective subjectivity of a small oligarchic group of the second type because of the aggregate impact of interrelated group effects and processes known as Michels’ “iron” law of oligarchy. In turn, in some time, the acquired collective subjectivity of the small group regressed to the individual subjectivity of its leader (see Para. 10 and Figure 3).

 

By applying a systematic approach to the analysis of socio-psychological effects and processes in primary small-group units of socio-political organisations [21], we found the critical point: interpersonal and intergroup conflicts as a point for applying “leverage”, i.e. systemic elimination of their likelihood with a view to long-term maintenance of the interaction of elite environment participants in the “equal-to-equal” position.

On the basis of our model of archetype governance of social systems [12], we developed the concept of such “leverage”, i.e. streamlining the clique creation process in groups so that participants at each stage interact as representatives of various groups in which they worked at the previous stage rather than as individuals and designed a corresponding organisational instrument – dynamic network as a variable structure of socio-political organisations [22]. The dynamic network integrates the method of brainstorming, the method of cross-groups and technologies of project management [23]. It overcomes the quantitative restrictions referred to in para. 12 and makes it possible to construct a subject political organisation consisting of a large group of members.

The proposed concept provides for a dynamic balance and long-term maintenance of a large group in a quasi-stable condition at the clique formation stage as a result of the cyclical course of their establishment and disintegration purposefully streamlined through the algorithm of dynamic network – variable structure of socio-political organisations.

Thus, the variable structure of political institutions – dynamic network is special due to its ability to divide members of a large group into small groups with different functions and cyclically restructure one group into another in an orderly manner following a particular algorithm, thereby maintaining their capacity for critical thinking in the rational plane, which according to Para. 3 is a necessary condition for its acquisition of subjectivity as a result of synchronisation of mental processes of the collective conscious and unconscious of each group. Due to lack of interpersonal and intergroup conflicts in the interaction of the members of a large group structured in such a way, it ensures their long-term stay in the “equal-to-equal” position, synchronises their mental activity using the same archetypes, actualises identical values, encourages to chose the same behavioural patterns and strategies during their stay in the community, prevents location of subjectivity in leaders, which, consequently, precludes its dysfunction and regression.

 

4

Figure 4. Full cycle of change of the communication platforms of variable structure – dynamic network at the stages of decision making and decision taking

 

Figure 4 shows a complete cycle of change of communication platforms during restructuring of a large group into small groups within a variable structure – dynamic network. For a better understanding, members of groups shown in the figure as circles of different colours at all stages of the cycle are in stable positions. At each stage, only communication platforms change – they are depicted as various geometric shapes of different colours. The algorithm of restructuring is described in detail in [22, 23]. Here, we will only note that the organisation of activity of a large group by periodically uniting its members in various small groups helps constantly maintain the functional ability to think critically in the communication platforms of such groups. The multitudes of parallel channels for information communication among such groups (realised through the inter-transition of its members streamlined via the algorithm of operation of the dynamic network) ensure the integrity of the collective subject consisting of a large group and its ability to think critically, as well as blocks the processes of its transformation into a crowd.

The proposed variable structure of subjective political organisations meets all the principles of the metaphor of the organisation as holographic brain outlined by Gareth Morgan in his book [24]: it can be displayed in each of its parts through the appropriate organisational culture – similar to the DNA of biological systems; it has excess capacity for processing information and planning its activities; its internal complexity corresponds to the complexity of the environment – it can effectively reconstruct and reproduce itself, adapting to new challenges; it provides minimum conditions and requirements to the process of collective action; and, most importantly, it is able to effectively learn and therefore multiply its own intelligence. [25]

To represent the principle of multiplication of collective intelligence in an organisation with the variable structure – dynamic network at the stage of discussion and decision-making, we will use graphical dependence of the competence of participants of specialised and cross-group of its units at each of the steps of its operation within the general meeting on the inventory of relevant knowledge (e.g., political, legal, economic, infrastructural, social, cultural, organisational, etc.) on the outlook scale that covers their entire available spectrum. A prototype of such dependence has been developed and introduced by Russian researcher Igor Boshchenko [26]

 

5

Figure 5. Dynamic network as an intelligence multiplier in subjective political organisations with variable structure

 

The red line in the top graph in Figure 5 shows the integrated competence of the specialised group resulting from the integration of personal competencies of each of the five (in this case) participants. It was formed when working out possible solutions to the task the group is dealing with. This competence is located within a narrow range of a particular profile (e.g. economical) on the outlook axis, so one can assume that the specialised group carries out its work in the mode of a narrow-band information filter that allows passage and processes only the relevant range of the external information flow. Obviously, the level of integrated competences (and, therefore, sensitivity) of the group is high only within the range of its own profile on the outlook scale. That is, we can assume that when working such groups construct their common cognitive model of solving problems with high integrated competence within the range of their own profile; while each member of the specialised group becomes a carrier of the integrated competence within the cognitive model produced by the group to solve the set problem.

The two-dimensional dynamic network includes several specialised groups that sort out and process the entire flow of information from the environment within the range of their profiles, analyse it in the context of the set task, and produce a list of alternatives or components of its solution. At the next step, after these groups restructure into cross-groups, its members alternately present the list for collective discussion.

After the discussion, the speaker and all other participants of the cross-group become carriers of the integrated competence within the represented and collectively discussed cognitive model of resolution of the specialised task of his/her group, which is enriched and perfected due to  the approaches suggested by representatives of related knowledge profiles. Graph 5 in the middle also shows this integrated competence with a red line. Thus, after the presentation and discussion of all reports in cross-groups, each member of the unit of the political organisation with the variable structure – dynamic network becomes a carrier of all integrated competencies that were developed by cross-groups within the cognitive models for solving all tasks that were on the agenda of the general meeting of the unit.

After the work in cross-groups is over, their participants return to their own specialised groups where they generalise and harmonise the cognitive models of solving their specialised problem improved and enriched during the previous step. In the process of collective work, member of the specialised group produce and become carriers of the general integrated competence within a coherent cognitive model for solving the task set before the group shown with a bold red line in the bottom graph of Figure 5.

Thus, each unit member has a dot competence within their own cognitive models for solving their specialised task, but after a two or three hour general meeting they become carriers of both a common integrated competence within a harmonised cognitive model for solving the problem of their of own profile, and a set of integrated competencies within the cognitive models of solving the tasks of other specialised groups, which together make up the agenda of the general meeting of the unit.

Thus, the proposed work format of the general meeting of units of a political organisation with the variable structure – dynamic network ensures effective multiplication of its collective intelligence, and the level of this intelligence grows rapidly with each successive cycle of their interaction in this format.

The key points discussed in this publication were elaborated on in our article [27] and presented in a video-report at the VII International Theoretical and Methodological Seminar ‘Archetype Study and State Governance: Challenges and Risks of Social Transformation’ of the Ukrainian School of Archetype Study, May 28 – June 3, 2016

 

Resume.

  1. The model of collective subjectivity of organisations consists of two interconnected elements – the collective field of the conscious arising in the process of operation of the group communication platform, and the integrated unconscious identical for all members of the base community that encompasses their individual fields of the conscious, which, in turn, are to some extent included in the collective field of the conscious.
  2. The level of organisational complexity, format and timing parameters of the communication platform functioning as a collective field of the conscious of the base community determine the effectiveness and efficiency of synchronisation of the mental processes of its individual members and determine the level of development and key qualities of the collective subject formed as a result of operation of this community.
  3. The key factor that determines the direction of the synchronisation processes of mental activity of individual members of the base community is the nature of relationship of their interaction positions resulting from their formal and informal group statuses. The biological nature of people launches and supports the process of their status ranking, which leads to regression of the collective subjectivity of the group to the individual subjectivity of its leader.
  4. The image of the community generated and stored in the psyche of community members can actualise and maintain the activity of related archetypes and corresponding values, which can keep the behaviour of its members within the appropriate framework for quite a long time in between the periods of their collective interaction within this community, for example, during their stay in other groups that activate other sets of archetypes and values in current situations.

 

  1. The communicative platform as the field of the collective conscious can safely operate only consisting of small groups of up to 12-15 people. Excessive number of the community members “connected” to the communication platform causes its dysfunction, which manifests itself in the inability to discuss tasks and seek solutions to the community problems without leaders with their own cliques or external moderators who streamline interaction and may significantly influence jointly produced solutions by manipulating alternatives.
  2. All attempts to build political organisations with the third type collective subjectivity characteristic of communities composed of large groups of people inevitably ended in the natural ranking of the statuses of their members and units in intragroup and intergroup conflicts, which resulted in regression of the claimed third type collective subjectivity to the collective subjectivity of a small oligarchic group of the second type as a result of the combined impact of interrelated effects and group processes known as Michels’ “iron” law of oligarchy. In turn, the acquired collective subjectivity of the small group in some time regressed to the individual subjectivity of its leader.
  3. To successfully construct subjective political organisations – i.e. social model multi-intelligent systems consisting of large groups of people – based on the presented model and analysis of its basic aspects, we developed the variable structure – dynamic network and a corresponding integral set of social technologies of organisational activity. The dynamic network integrates the method of brainstorming, cross-group method and technologies of project management.
  4. The proposed variable structure – dynamic network will enable political organisations consisting of large groups to acquire collective subjectivity, which will make it possible for them to be reflected in every part through the appropriate organisational culture; provide excess capacity to process information and plan its activities; bring internal complexity in line with the complexity of the environment; introduce the minimum conditions and requirements to the process of collective activity; and provide the opportunity for effective learning and, therefore, multiplication of their own intelligence.

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