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Computational and Mathematical Organization Theory: Perspective and Directions

By Kathleen M. Carley


Computational and mathematical organization theory is an inter-disciplinary scientific area whose research members focus on developing and testing organizational theory using formal models. The community shares a theoretical view of organizations as collections of processes and intelligent adaptive agents that are task oriented, socially situated, technologically bound, and continuously changing. Behavior within the organization is seen to affect and be affected by the organization’s position in the external environment. The community also shares a methodological orientation toward the use of formal models for developing and testing theory. These models are both computational (e.g., simulation, emulation, expert systems, computer-assisted numerical analysis) and mathematical (e.g., formal logic, matrix algebra, network analysis, discrete and continuous equations). Much of the research in this area falls into four areas: organizational design, organizational learning, organizations and information technology, and organizational evolution and change. Historically, much of the work in this area has been focused on the issue how should organizations be designed. The work in this subarea is cumulative and tied to other subfields within organization theory more generally

Topics: Directions
Year: 1995
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