Behavior settings are theorized entities that help explain the relationship between individuals and the environment - particularly the social environment. This topic is typically indexed under the larger rubric of 'Ecological (or Environmental) Psychology'. However, the notion of behavior setting is offered here in more detail and with more specificity than is found in the larger entry under 'Ecological Psychology' or 'Environmental Psychology'.

Property Value
dbo:abstract
  • Behavior settings are theorized entities that help explain the relationship between individuals and the environment - particularly the social environment. This topic is typically indexed under the larger rubric of 'Ecological (or Environmental) Psychology'. However, the notion of behavior setting is offered here in more detail and with more specificity than is found in the larger entry under 'Ecological Psychology' or 'Environmental Psychology'. There has been a tendency in the social sciences generally to polarize arguments about consciousness, identity, behavior, and culture around either the mind existing 'in the head' or the mind being an artifact of social interaction. 'Mind'—in the sense used here—is understood as the motivation for behavior. Evidence indicates that both of these 'facts' are accurate. One of the problems social scientists have is understanding this paradox. Behavior settings are mediating structures that help explain the relationship between the dynamic behavior of individuals and stable social structure. Social scientist Roger Barker first developed this theoretical framework in the late 1940s. Behavior settings also may serve as a bridge between the foundational work of Humberto Maturana & Francisco Varela on Autopoiesis and the insights developed in American Pragmatism and Continental Activity Theory. A behavior setting exists at the interface between the standing patterns of behavior and the milieu (environment), wherein the behavior is happening in the 'milieu', and the 'milieu' in some sense "matches" the 'behavior'. In technical parlance, the "behavior-milieu interface" is called the synomorph, and the 'milieu' is said to be circumjacent and 'synomorphic' to the 'behavior'. In a dentist’s office, for example, "patients get their cavities filled". This is the standing pattern (the behavior/milieu part or 'synomorph') because we are in the office (the 'milieu' surrounds us, i.e. 'circumjacent') and the pieces of the 'milieu' 'fit' the standing pattern (the drill is meant to fit in my mouth and drill my tooth, i.e. 'synomorphic' with the 'behavior'). Further, to be considered a 'behavior setting', these 'behavior/milieu parts' or 'synomorphs' must have a specific degree of interdependence that is greater than their interdependence with other parts of other settings. There is an empirical test that can determine the relative robustness of behavior settings, depending on the index of interdependence between and among specific standing patterns of behavior. By itself, a standing pattern of behavior is meaningless; it would be like watching a person pretending to go to the dentist’s office and having a cavity filled. Also, a dentist’s office without patients (or the possibility of patients) would be a meaningless artifact. So, a behavior setting is a self-referenced (internally interdependent and self-defined) entity that consists of one or more standing patterns of behavior. Just as the standing pattern is synomorphic with the artifacts in the milieu, so are standing patterns synomorphic with other standing patterns in the behavior setting. We see in the eminent ecological psychologist, Roger G. Barker’s conception, an elegant and stable view of the nested interrelationships that exist within our common experience. The pieces fit, and in their fitting we see the larger structure-in-a-context that is necessary for making claims about development, causality, or purpose. (en)
dbo:wikiPageID
  • 2512966 (xsd:integer)
dbo:wikiPageRevisionID
  • 582151375 (xsd:integer)
dct:subject
http://purl.org/linguistics/gold/hypernym
rdf:type
rdfs:comment
  • Behavior settings are theorized entities that help explain the relationship between individuals and the environment - particularly the social environment. This topic is typically indexed under the larger rubric of 'Ecological (or Environmental) Psychology'. However, the notion of behavior setting is offered here in more detail and with more specificity than is found in the larger entry under 'Ecological Psychology' or 'Environmental Psychology'. (en)
rdfs:label
  • Behavior settings (en)
owl:sameAs
prov:wasDerivedFrom
foaf:isPrimaryTopicOf
is foaf:primaryTopic of