Joseph Porter Draper has defended his doctoral dissertation, “Evolving Communities: Adapting Theories of Robert Kegan and Bernard Lonergan to Intentional Groups” at Boston College.

‘This dissertation proposes a theory of group cognitive development by arguing that intentional adult groups are complex and dynamic, and that they have the potential to evolve over time. Groups are complex in that they are made up of individuals within different orders of consciousness (Kegan), and they are dynamic in that different orders of consciousness interact and conflict (Lonergan) during the formation and enactment of group vision, values, and procedures. Dynamic complexity theory of group development as it is referred to in this study is grounded in Robert Kegan’s constructive developmental theory and in Bernard Lonergan’s transcendental method. While both Kegan and Lonergan attend to the growth of individuals, their theories are adapted to groups in order to understand the cognitive complexity of groups, intragroup and intergroup conflict, and the mental complexity of leader curriculum. This theory is applied to two case studies, one from antiquity in the case of the first century Corinthian community engaged in conflict with its founder, St. Paul, and in one contemporary study of American Catholic parishioners engaged in contentious dialogue with diocesan leaders from 1994 to 2004.’ (From the Abstract.)

Doctoral students are invited to advise us of the completion of their work so we can pass along a congratulatory word and notice of their accomplishment. They are also invited to donate a (bound or unbound) copy of their completed doctoral projects to the LRI library.