Problem Recognition, Classification and Appraisal

  • Alec M. Lee
Part of the Studies in Management book series (STMA)


In the two preceding chapters the importance of problem recognition, classification and appraisal has been underlined. By problem recognition we mean the identification of problems that must be solved, threats that must be countered, challenges that must be met and opportunities that may profitably be exploited by an Organisation if its purposes are to be fulfilled and its objectives achieved. These problems, threats and opportunities may be generated from within the Organisation or from without, in its economic, technological, political, competitive or even its natural environments. By problem classification we mean classification by form, not by content. We should ask whether a certain problem that has been identified is unique or one that will recur at regular or irregular intervals. By problem appraisal we mean the assessment of the seriousness of problems, of the adequacy of existing structures, means and methods to resolve them and, if these are inadequate, of possible new ways of disposing of them. A problem, threat or opportunity should be appraised in terms of its impact upon an Organisation’s progress towards the attainment of its objectives or even upon the realism of its objectives. Problems may then be assigned relative, or preferably absolute, measures of importance and be added to the managerial agenda of matters requiring action which place demands upon the resources of the Organisation.


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Notes and References

  1. O. Helmer in his book, Social Technology (Basic Books, New York, 1966).Google Scholar
  2. W. Durant, The Age of Faith (Simon and Schuster, New York, 1950)Google Scholar
  3. S. T. Bindoff, Tudor England (Penguin Books, 1950)Google Scholar
  4. N. Wiener, God and Golem Inc. (MIT Press, Cambridge, Mass., 1964)Google Scholar
  5. R. A. Ackoff, Scientific Method: The Optimisation of Applied Research Decisions (John Wiley, New York, 1962).Google Scholar
  6. B. V. Dean, Operations Research in Research and Development (John Wiley, New York, 1963).Google Scholar
  7. See also E. B. Roberts, The Dynamics of Research and Developmentt (Harper and Row, New York, 1964).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© A. M. Lee 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alec M. Lee

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