top of page
Desert Highway
Thoughtful writing authored and shared by members of of the Thinking Collaborative community to support others on the journey.

Sustaining the Journey

Change as an Empirical-Rational Process

Authored By:

Thinking Collaborative


August 17, 2015

Last week we introduced Chin and Benne’s framework for three types of change processes. This week we examine some of the assumptions in the Empirical-Rational Process and invite you to consider how it might be productively utilized in your school’s work. This method assumes that, when offered better ways of working, rational people will accept them and make changes. It is relies on fixing the parts of a system and is primarily a technological change. Many reading programs of the last few decades have asked teachers to change how they teach reading based on research.

In this process, the change agent relies on the consulting support function, offering information and disseminating knowledge. For success to occur, the change agent must provide rational benefits and be able to demonstrate them. The focus is on the innovation and on the organization rather than on individuals.

When is a time where you have seen or used this method successfully?

What aspects of Adaptive Schools and Cognitive CoachingSM might increase the success of this type of method?

What have you needed from others when this method has been used in an innovation you have been a part of?

Source: Chin, R., & Benne, K.D. (1969) General strategies for effecting changes in human systems. In W.G. Bennis, K.D. Benne, & R. Chin (Eds), The planning of change (pp. 32-59). New York: Holt, Rinehart & Winston.

bottom of page