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Fisher Jr, William PaulORCID iD
Publications (3 of 3) Show all publications
Fisher Jr, W. P. (2022). Contrasting roles of measurement knowledge systems in confounding or creating sustainable change. Acta IMEKO, 11(4)
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Contrasting roles of measurement knowledge systems in confounding or creating sustainable change
2022 (English)In: Acta IMEKO, ISSN 0237-028X, Vol. 11, no 4Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Sustainable change initiatives are often short-circuited by failures in modelling. Unexamined assumptions about measurement and numbers push modelling into the background as a presupposition rarely articulated as an explicit operation. Even when models of system dynamics are planned components of a sustainable change effort, the key role of measurement is typically overlooked. The crux of the matter concerns the distinction between numeric counts and measured quantities. Mistaking the former for the latter confuses levels of complexity and fundamentally compromises communications. Reconceiving measurement as modelling multilevel distributed decision processes offers new alternatives aligned with historically successful efforts in creating sustainable change. Five conditions for successful sustainable change are contrasted from the perspectives of single-level vs multilevel modelling: vision, plans, skills, resources, and incentives. Omitting any one of these from efforts at creating change result, respectively, in confusion, treadmills, anxiety, frustration, and resistance. The shortcomings of typically implemented single-level approaches to measurement result in the widespread experience of these negative consequences. Results show that new potentials for creating sustainable change can be expected to follow from implementations of multilevel distributed decision processes that effectively counteract organizational amnesia by embedding new learning in an externally materialized knowledge infrastructure incorporating a shared cultural memory. Copyright: © This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
International Measurement Confederation (IMEKO), 2022
complexity, measurement, modelling, sustainability
National Category
Engineering and Technology
urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-64770 (URN)10.21014/ACTAIMEKO.V11I4.1330 (DOI)2-s2.0-85146992997 (Scopus ID)

Correspondence Address: Fisher W.P. Research Institutes of Sweden, Sweden

Available from: 2023-05-15 Created: 2023-05-15 Last updated: 2023-06-08Bibliographically approved
Fisher Jr, W. P., Melin, J. & Möller, C. (2021). Metrology for climate-neutral cities.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Metrology for climate-neutral cities
2021 (English)Report (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

We propose in this report decisive and constructive responses to critical appraisals of the Agenda 2030, the Sustainable Development Goals, and the EU taxonomy. The lack of transparency and accountability plaguing these vitally important efforts can be rectified by means of systematic implementations of the art and science of measurement modelling informed by metrological principles. The aforementioned documents’ vague and all-inclusive language fails to assign responsibilities or aid in goal achievement, but can be replaced with systems of measurements that are effectively and efficiently, meaningfully and usefully, integrated with management objectives. When measurements are welldesigned, managing goals and objectives becomes seamlessly integrated with measurement. Measuring instruments should map the domain of interest, allowing users to locate where they are relative to where they were, where they want to go, and what to do next. But for this to happen, the intention to measure in this way must be acted on. Then, incomparable ordinal ratings and scores must be replaced with qualityassured quantity values. And disconnected reporting systems must be coordinated and aligned. Most importantly, taking the trouble to create fluidly manageable measures makes it possible to identify and harness human-powered energy sources for driving sustainable change, for ramping up efforts to the global scale that must be achieved if we are to succeed in transforming our systems. Entrepreneurs and innovators need scientifically rigorous, meaningful, useful, and convenient tools if they are to succeed in imagining, designing, and deploying effective responses to the pressing challenges we face. Our recommendations are formulated in direct response to criticisms that have been directed at the Agenda 2030 and the EU Taxonomy concerning the transparency, comparability, and accountability of the proposed goals for sustainable development. Neither the goals themselves nor the urgency of the need to address them are at issue. The concern is rather with the means by which those goals may be achieved, and the effectiveness of those means. The solutions we propose in this document are complex but manageable—just as the problems we face are also complex but manageable. We have no intention of providing a panacea, or a one-size-fits-all solution. There is nothing automatic or easy about what needs to be done. This report is only a first step. We provide it in the hope of provoking more of those concerned to take a fresh look at what might be possible. We tap readily available, longstanding, well-established, proven ideas not previously brought together for close consideration. But far from expecting or even hoping that our recommendations will be taken up and followed to the letter, we instead fervently pray for playful experimentation and constructive debate. Our goal, perhaps more than anything else, is to encourage a broader scope for the imagination of possible solutions. Imaginations today seem overly bound within the constraints of assumptions that actually—and perversely—contribute to perpetuating the problems we face. We will count our efforts successful if we manage to shake some minds free from those constraints. In this spirit, we look forward to engaging soon in productive collaborations with any and all who are interested.

p. 79
RISE Rapport ; 2021:84
National Category
Environmental Sciences
urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-57281 (URN)978-91-89385-74-0 (ISBN)
Available from: 2021-12-01 Created: 2021-12-01 Last updated: 2023-06-08Bibliographically approved
Pendrill, L. & Fisher Jr, W. P. (2013). Quantifying Human Response: Linking metrological and psychometric characterisations of Man as a Measurement Instrument (ed.). Journal of Physics, 459(1), Article ID 012057.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Quantifying Human Response: Linking metrological and psychometric characterisations of Man as a Measurement Instrument
2013 (English)In: Journal of Physics, Vol. 459, no 1, article id 012057Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A better understanding of how to characterise human response is essential to improved person-centred care and other situations where human factors are crucial. Challenges to introducing classical metrological concepts such as measurement uncertainty and traceability when characterising Man as a Measurement Instrument include the failure of many statistical tools when applied to ordinal measurement scales and a lack of metrological references in, for instance, healthcare. The present work attempts to link metrological and psychometric (Rasch) characterisation of Man as a Measurement Instrument in a study of elementary tasks, such as counting dots, where one knows independently the expected value because the measurement object (collection of dots) is prepared in advance. The analysis is compared and contrasted with recent approaches to this problem by others, for instance using signal error fidelity.

Expected values, Human response, Measurement instruments, Measurement scale, Measurement uncertainty, Signal errors, Statistical tools
National Category
Natural Sciences
urn:nbn:se:ri:diva-6492 (URN)10.1088/1742-6596/459/1/012057 (DOI)2-s2.0-84889827451 (Scopus ID)15798 (Local ID)15798 (Archive number)15798 (OAI)
Available from: 2016-09-08 Created: 2016-09-08 Last updated: 2023-06-08Bibliographically approved

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