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To reify refers to taking the abstract or conceptual, such as the perspective of an organization as a system, and considering it to be real, regarding it as a concrete thing. The notion of reification is at the heart of systems thinking, where the abstract concept of a system applied to organization leads to a plethora of management techniques to shape, design, and control it, as one would a material object.

The alternative to the systemic, reified, approach to viewing and managing organizations is responsive processes.