Madsbjerg argues that our culture—especially in the business world—has become to taken with a bias toward scientific or algorithmic thinking. This obsession with data has limited our ability to build deep understanding and intuition about people and culture, which are not so easily quantified. Madsbjerg describes sensemaking, a humanities-based method inspired by phenomenology, as an alternative approach that helps understand not just what people do but helps us understand how people relate to contexts around them through the acquisition of thick data.
What is sensemaking
- Sensemaking articulates new perspectives and frames for understanding the world around us
- Sensemaking produces thick data
- Four types of knowledge (Madsbjerg)
- Different forms of empathy
- Intuition is not innate and may be cultivated
Critique of "algorithmic thinking"
- Cultural bias toward scientific models leaves us less equipped to interpret qualitative information.
- People can't be reduced to computational processes
- Peirce identifies four offences we commit when reasoning
- Only abductive reasoning can produce new ideas (Peirce)
- Four offenses we commit when reasoning (Peirce)
Critique of design thinking
Madsbjerg, Christian. Sensemaking: The Power of the Humanities in the Age of the Algorithm. Hachette Books, 2017.