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Functionalist Approach

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Teaching Hospitals in Business


The human body is by definition a complex adaptive system. That is why medical practice can be considered a paradigmatic example of complex problem solving. Therefore, medical education can be used as a benchmark in the education of complex problem solving.

There is also no doubt that businesses, when successful, are intrinsically complex and adaptive. Therefore the management of the complex aspects of businesses is homologous to medical practice and the educational models should be homologous too.

Unicist Teaching Hospitals for Business in the Real World

The activities of Unicist Teaching Hospitals for Business are developed through Business Residencies and need to integrate three roles and one object. The three roles are:

  • The Chief-Resident is the coordinator of a Business Residency that has the full responsibility for the diagnoses and for achieving the results that have been defined as being possible to be achieved. The participants of the residency also have full responsibility for the results after they agreed that such results are possible.

  • The “Fallacy-Shooter” is the person responsible for guiding the action-reflection-action process in order to improve the accuracy of the diagnoses and of the work processes. This guidance is based on the development of destructive tests to confirm the limits of the validity of knowledge and non-destructive tests to validate solutions.

  • The “Ombudsman” is responsible for monitoring that the proposals respond to the functional needs of the solutions that are required; she/he is the business coach. The role represents the client as a “function” that is responsible for generating value to the environment. The responsible officers are the “owners” of the functions.

Learning by Teaching

The learning process of the Business Residencies is based on a “Learning by Teaching” model. This model requires that the roles of fallacy-shooting and ombudsman are exerted by the participants of the residency.

Virtual Collaboration

The residencies are based on virtual collaboration. As conceptual knowledge is cross-cultural, it allows integrating counselors and experts of different parts of the world to ensure effective solutions and provide the necessary learning context and support to drive and catalyze the activity of the learners.

This requires following the technologies to deal with the nature of each problem and using the unicist superior education technology to manage the learning process of the participants.

Seen from the outside, the process appears extremely simple, because concepts are rationally obvious and the nature of a learning process responds to the nature of human evolution. From the inside, it requires following strict steps without making shortcuts.

These residencies are in fact productive business units that foster the learning of the participants. They are solutions and knowledge factories.

Unicist Education

The unicist educational approach has been developed to provide a methodology for superior education.

It is based on the goal of providing a learning process to allow individuals to deal with complex problems in adaptive processes. Adaptiveness is defined as the capacity of an entity to influence an adaptive environment while it is being influenced by it.

The unicist education model is based on five pillars:

  1. A learning context is required before a learning process begins. Learning processes in adults require the existence of a real problem to be solved.
  2. An adaptive learning contract that defines the guiding idea of the learning process and the conditions of the teaching and learning activities.
  3. The development of business residencies, which are homologous to medical residencies, where the unicist reflection methodology is used to develop solutions.
  4. The use of learning objects that allow managing the personalized learning program of participants.
  5. The teacher’s role that is focused on ensuring the development of solutions while driving learning activities.

Difference between Professional and Superior Education

Unicist education is based on learning processes that are analogous to “teaching hospitals” based on real complex problem solving. The unicist educational model is a superior education model that deals with the learning of logical tools and business objects.

A comparison between Superior Education and Professional Education will clarify the guiding idea, and the difference between the Unicist Education and the Professional Education:


Unicist Education

Professional Education

Educational FrameworkTeaching Hospital / ClinicsWorkshops / Seminars / Courses
Educational ModelComplex Problem SolvingSystemic Problem Solving
Learning ApproachAction-Reflection-ActionTheory-Practice
Problem Solving ApproachFocused on ResultsFocused on Objectives
Future ForecastingLogical Inferences / Delphi GroupsProjections / Delphi Groups
KnowledgeLogical & Empirical ApproachEmpirical Approach
Type of ToolsConceptual ToolsAnalytical Tools
Business PlanningStrategic ApproachAnalytic Approach
Dominant type of AnalysisFundamental AnalysisTechnical Analysis
Risk ManagementBased on PossibilitiesBased on Probabilities
Business ProcessesAdaptive SystemsOperational Systems


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