Context Analysis - Survey Method
I have developed a Context Analysis technique using web pages from the internet which collects sample pages from a wide range of companies, agencies, historical and cultural sources, summarising "the Field and the Players". This set of sample pages can then be examined for patterns which are revealed.

I have done a Case Study of food and farming in the UK using this technique - please see the attached food survey pages, which contain 67 pages from a wide range of organisations

Details of the technique
The main technique is to cut and paste information from the websites of numerous representative organisations and businesses. I have taken 'snapshots' of typical web pages from the chosen organisations during the week of 4-11th May, 2002, and a list of the organisations surveyed is given. Each of my own web pages consists of one or more of these snapshots. I have tried to keep each page non-scrolling, but in some instances I have added further text from the original site if it has been cut off by the snapshot process. I have provided a link to each of the original web pages.

Selection Criteria.
I have chosen the snapshots to give a fair idea of the operations of each organisation - for example, Unilever are a major food production and processing company. They have hundreds of pages covering their products and brands, investor information, job vacancies, etc., and I have selected 3 extracts from their site, one about their "Environment and Society" approach, one about their "Sustainability Initiatives", and a short extract about their production of frozen peas. This gives a good idea of the scale of their operations, and of how they present themselves - the 'semiosis' of their style, layout, use of colours and fonts. With my survey, I have chosen "interesting pages" rather than "boring pages", and I also had the idea in mind that I would study UK Government food policy. These may have influenced my choices, but I have tried my best to be impartial. I don't think that either the survey or my interpretation of it are heavily biased.

A potential for a Consensus Reality.
Potentially, further data could be included until all interested parties agreed that this was a valid representation of the context of food and farming in the UK. Admittedly, each of us reads this data and modifies some sort of internal mental map (cognitive context), and none of us think in an identical way. However, I think it is possible to reach some sort of external consensus context as a working basis for future discussions.

Summary
I think this technique has considerable potential to reveal hidden patterns in the context of an organisation's operations, and the results from this are developed on my companion food site.

Please contact me at george@whatever-will.be if you are interested in the above

(0044)(0) 1372-749803

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