I am pleased to announce the Social Ontology PDW, happening shortly in the Swissotel with our honored guest and award-winning author Brian Epstein, along with Teppo Felin, Dimo Dimov, Todd Zenger, Randy Westgren, Robert Wuebker, and Brian Gordon.
The social sciences differ from the physical sciences in at least two ways. First, the social sciences (e.g., economics, strategy, sociology, management, etc.) lack a coherent unified theoretical framework. A physical science (like, e.g., chemistry), by contrast, exists as part of a deeply interlocking, unified framework of other physical sciences (physics, biology, etc.). Social ontology, the study of social reality, is attempting to repair this "framework gap" and achieve what has so far not been achieved-a unified theoretical foundation for all social phenomena. Whether it can achieve that lofty goal is unclear, but what is clear is that it will continue to have an enormous impact on all of the social science fields. Second, unlike the physical entities, social entities exist because of agents' cognition about them. Social ontology is now the preeminent field for the study of the theoretical foundation of social phenomena. There are annual international conferences and an established field led by luminaries like John Searle and Brian Epstein, among others. This year, we have the honor of hosting Brian Epstein, in addition to some of the top scholars in strategy, entrepreneurship, and economics working on social ontology. Many are now applying social ontology to problems like value creation, enrollment, firm boundaries, legitimacy, role specialization, and more. In recent years, the social ontology PDW had to turn away a hundred attendees who couldn't fit in the room. In 2017, even with a 8:30pm Friday time slot, the large room was nearly filled so arrive early!
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