Managing Organizational Complexity

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Overview

In introducing this first volume of a series exploring issues in managing complexity, Richardson (Institute for the Study of Coherence and Emergence) contends that no one has yet developed a reliable skill set for learning from the "noise" of complex systems. In 30 papers, multidisciplinary international contributors analyze complex organizations, characterized as open systems with nonlinear relationships, from diverse paradigms including evolutionary philosophy and enterprise self-reproduction. Applications, ...
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Overview

In introducing this first volume of a series exploring issues in managing complexity, Richardson (Institute for the Study of Coherence and Emergence) contends that no one has yet developed a reliable skill set for learning from the "noise" of complex systems. In 30 papers, multidisciplinary international contributors analyze complex organizations, characterized as open systems with nonlinear relationships, from diverse paradigms including evolutionary philosophy and enterprise self-reproduction. Applications, illustrated in case studies, include group decision support systems and a transition strategy model. Not indexed. Annotation ©2005 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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Table of Contents

Series introduction
Volume introduction
Section introduction : why philosophy? 3
1 Knowing complex systems 7
2 "To be or not to be? : that is [NOT] the question" : complexity theory and the need for critical thinking 21
3 How can we think complex? 47
4 Emergence, creative process, and self-transcending constructions 63
5 Causality in organized complexity : the role of management 79
6 Advancing complexity theory into the human domain 93
Section introduction : pluralism in management science 109
7 From excellence to emergence : the evolution of management thinking and the influence of complexity 115
8 Unresolved issues in process-centric business analysis : a cathartic role for complexity 133
9 The use of bytes to analyze complex organizations 151
10 Chaos-based principles of forecasting 167
11 Predicting the human weather : how differentiation and contextual complexity affect behavior prediction 183
12 Dealing with complexity in organizational control processes : drawing lessons for the human brain 201
13 Theory of integral complex organization 217
14 Self-reproduction of the enterprise : Von Neumann's model applied 237
15 The observation, inquiry, and measurement challenges surfaced by complexity theory 253
16 An intersubjective measure of organizational complexity : a new approach 269
17 Imaging complex partnerships 301
18 The improvised-orchestration model of organizational evolution 313
19 Storytelling and the complex epistemology of organizations 331
20 Ancient insights into the modern organization 345
21 Machines or gardens ... or both? 361
22 A complexity-based scrutiny of learning from organizational crises 373
Section introduction : applying complexity thinking 391
23 The implications of complexity for business process and strategy 397
24 Agent-based models to manage the complex 419
25 The coherent management of complex project and the potential role of group decision support systems 433
26 The complexity of complex systems conferences : reflexivity and walking the talk 459
27 Parameters for sustained orderly growth in learning organizations 473
28 Complexity and spatiality : regions, networks and fluids in sustainable water management 493
29 Encouraging strategic change by using complexity-based principles : a case study of the Open University, UK 505
30 Provoking chaordic change in a Dutch manufacturing firm 521
Postscript 557
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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 25, 2006

    Excellent Introduction to Complexity

    The wide range of authors contributing to this book makes it an excellent introduction to the study of the field of complexity. The multiple perspectives combine to show the positive and negative aspects of different approaches and theories. In addition, the papers included here are individually referenced - which makes it a treasure trove of information for someone who is interested in this exciting field.

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