Review Logical Reasoning with the Eight Categories of Legitimate Reservation

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes.

There are eight Categories of Legitimate Reservation (CLR) and they were created within the Theory of Constraints' Thinking Processes (TP).

The Theory of Constraints (TOC) is a management paradigm that views any manageable system as being limited in achieving more of its goals by a very small number of constraints. Developed by Dr. Eliyahu Goldratt, TOC is a set of problem-solving tools, one of which is the Thinking Processes.

The Thinking Processes are a set of tools to help managers walk through the steps of evaluating a problem, developing a solution, and planning to implement the solution. When constructing a logic tree within the Thinking Processes, these eight categories are used to scrutinize and challenge the logic of the tree's constructs.

  1. Clarity: This category ensures that any word, idea, or causal relationship is entirely understood and unambiguous. It underlines the importance of making any diagrams or trees clearly understandable to all, even those not involved in their creation.
  1. Entity Existence: This reservation is about confirming that the entity in question actually exists within the problem-solving or analysis scope. It helps avoid the pitfall of introducing unproven assumptions while building logical Thinking Processes trees.
  1. Causality Existence: This reservation involves validating whether the cause indeed results in the cited effect. This involves vocalizing the relationship as, for example, "if A exists, then B exists" or "to have B, A must be present".
  1. Cause Sufficiency: This checks whether a cause (or set of causes) is, on its own, enough to produce the effect. In intricate systems, various independent causes may result in an effect, or multiple causes may combine to create an effect. Should a legitimate cause be unknown or overlooked, the proposed solutions might not always prevent the effect, hence the importance of listing all causes.
  1. Additional Cause: This reservation probes for any other cause that could lead to the same effect but hasn't been mentioned yet.
  1. Cause-Effect Reversal: This aims to address any potential mix-up between the cause and its effect.
  1. Predicted Effect Existence: This category explores an additional, expected, and verifiable effect from a specific cause. It supplements the validation of causality existence: if the cause leads to another predictable effect, it is valid; if not, the cause's existence is likely invalid.
  1. Tautology: Also known as circular logic, this checks if the effect is the only and inadequate evidence provided for the existence of a cause. This tends to happen when the cause is less tangible, like in the statement, "I fervently wished for good weather, hence the weather was good because of my fervent wish".

Each category is used as a checkpoint to test the validity and integrity of the logic constructs within the thinking processes. They provide a systematic way to scrutinize and validate the logical structure of a problem and its solution, enhancing decision-making and strategic planning.