Dissipative structures in educational change: Prigogine and the academy

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Gilstrap, Donald L.

Gilstrap, Donald L. 2007. Dissipative structures in educational change: Prigogine and the academy. -- International Journal of Leadership in Education: Theory and Practice;v.10 no.1, pp. 49-69


This article is an interpretive study of the theory of irreversible and dissipative systems process transformation of Nobel Prize winning physicist Ilya Prigogine and how it relates to the phenomenological study of leadership and organizational change in educational settings. Background analysis on the works of Prigogine is included as a foundation for human inquiry and metaphor generation for open, dissipative systems in educational settings. International case study research by contemporary systems and leadership theorists on dissipative structures theory has also been included to form the interpretive framework for exploring alternative models of leadership theory in far from equilibrium educational settings. Interpretive analysis explores the metaphorical significance, connectedness, and inference of dissipative systems and helps further our knowledge of human‐centred transformations in schools and colleges.

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