詹姆斯·格黑爾·米勒

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詹姆斯·格黑尔·米勒(James Grier Miller)
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詹姆斯·格黑爾·米勒(James Grier Miller)
詹姆斯·格黑爾·米勒(James Grier Miller,1916-2002)系統管理學派主要代表人物之一

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詹姆斯·格黑爾·米勒簡介

  詹姆斯·格黑爾·米勒 (James Grier Miller)是實用系統理論的代表人;其生物學系統觀一把系統及其部分劃分為有機確定的子系統,被稱為"生命系統論"。

James Grier Miller

  James Grier Miller (1916 - 7 Nov 2002) was an American biologist, a pioneer of systems science, who originated the modern use of the term "behavioral science", and founded and directed the multi-disciplinary Mental Health Research Institute at the University of Michigan.

Biography

  Miller received his A.B. summa cum laude in 1937, an A.M. in psychology in 1938, an M.D. cum laude in 1942, and Ph.D. in psychology in 1943 all from Harvard University, where he was also a junior fellow of the Society of Fellows. Following military service in World War II, he served as Chief of the newly formed Clinical Psychology section of the Veteran's Administration central office in Washington.

  He has served on the faculty at Harvard. In 1948, he accepted the position of Chairman of the Department of Psychology at the University of Chicago, which he held until 1955. From 1955 to 1967 he directed the multi-disciplinary Mental Health Research Institute At Michigan. In 1967 to pursue an administrative career, first as provost of the newly founded Cleveland State University, and then in 1973 as president of the University of Louisville, from which position he retired in 1980.

  He is a fellow or member of numerous scientific and professional societies. He served as president of the Society for General Systems Research (SGSR) succeeding Margaret Mead in 1973. He was a founder and the first head of EDUCOM (the Interuniversity Communications Council). He also has been a fellow of the "International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis" (IIASA) in Vienna. For more than 30 years Miller was editor of the Journal "Behavioral Science".

Work

  The Multi-disciplinary scope

  Miller traced his interests in the merging of biological and social sciences to his undergraduate days as a member of the Harvard Society of Fellows, and to the influence of Alfred Whitehead. Whitehead became his particular mentor as well as personal friend and strongly influenced his future intellectual interests. He suggested that Miller makes a serious attempt to develop a theoretical integration of the biological and social sciences dealing with mankind and other living beings, comparable to the general cosmological theories about the physical universe developed by Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington and Sir James H. Jeans, who were at Cambridge while Whitehead was teaching there. At Chicago, Miller was also stimulated to integrate the biological and social sciences through discussions with nuclear physicist Enrico Fermi, who felt that such advances were important for the survival of the human race in view of the development of the destructive force of nuclear explosions.

  Mental Health Research Institute

  In 1955, Miller, who was then chairman of the Department of Psychology at the University of Chicago, accepted the invitation of Dr. Raymond Waggoner, chairman of the U-M Medical School Department of Psychiatry, to establish the Mental Health Research Institute (MHRI): an interdisciplinary institute dedicated to the behavioral sciences, an advanced concept for the time.

  Miller’s ultimate, ambitious goal was to bring a variety of scientists to freely exchange ideas, and to reveal commonalities in the function and information processing of cells, organs, individuals, and societal groups and organizations. Miller brought with him from the University of Chicago the eminent Ralph W. Gerard, a neurophysiologist, and Anatol Rapoport, a mathematical biologist. Later, Robert I. Crane and Richard L. Meier, also from Chicago, joined the group. The broad interdisciplinary nature of the institute was reflected in the areas of expertise of its members, who also were appointed in diverse University units, including the Law School and the departments of political science, psychology, biological chemistry, sociology, urban planning and psychiatry.

  Miller was in 1967 succeeded at the MHRI by the late Gardner Quarton, then by the undersigned, and since 1995, by co-directors Stanley Watson and Huda Akil. Over the years, the institute has remained interdisciplinary but in a more restricted way, emphasizing neuroscience.

  Living systems

  In 1978, together with his wife and collaborator Jessie, Miller made the case for a unified approach to the biological, psychological and social sciences in the book "Living Systems" a compilation and synthesis that he regarded as the capstone of his career, 25 years in the making which founded the field of Living systems theory.

  University of the World

  In 1982, Miller created a concept named the "University of the World". His purpose was to create an organization that would link educational institutions in all countries, and serve the educational needs of students of all countries. The premise behind the University of the World is that a better educated world will yield improved international understanding and offer all people a better chance for peace and prosperity. The University of the World has been designed to use electronic telecommunications to disseminate educational resources to students and faculty in all countries.

Publications

  Miller has written or co-authored nine books and published more than 100 scientific and scholarly articles.

  • 1942. Unconsciousness. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
  • 1948. OSS Assessment Staff. Assessment of men. New York: Rinehart & Company.
  • 1950. Experiments in social process. (Ed.) New York: Mc Graw-Hill.
  • 1959. The pharmacology and clinical usefulness of carisoprodol. (Ed.) Detroit: Wayne State University Press.
  • 1960. Drugs and behavior. (Ed.) with L. Uhr. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
  • 1978. Living systems. New York: Mc Graw-Hill.
  • 1989. Measurement and interpretations in accounting: a living systems theory approach. With G.A. Swanson, New York: Quorum Books.
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