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Complexity Theory Framework

Explain and discuss, within a complexity theory framework, how small changes in a system can lead to large, or even radical transformational changes in an organization. You may also wish to show how understanding organizations as complex adaptive systems can affect the innovation process as well as leadership.

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According to Dann, Z. and Barclay, I. "Complexity theory has grown out of systems theory and chaos theory in an attempt to demonstrate why the whole universe is greater than the sum of the parts and how all its components come together to produce overarching patterns as the system learns, evolves and adapts." In complexity theory, the system is described as an integrated whole and its properties cannot be lowered to the sum of its parts. Hence, all of the phenomena are related to each other yet independent and even if a system is a part of a larger system, each of them has its own unique properties. The initial Complexity theory framework was developed from the term used by Santa Fe Institute called Complex Adaptive Systems (CAS) which describes a kind of system that is adaptable through the self-organization process and new behaviors, structures, and patterns. From a theoretical viewpoint, ways were proposed which makes the theory applicable in practice. Hence, the complexity theory was simplified and was handled as a knowledge/cultural/learning process wherein real application potential emerges. The management environment becomes active and dynamic which changes as time goes on, a human system that must learn to adapt, and evolve. It is vital to understand the relationship between the system as a whole and the parts that comprise the whole system as it learns and ...

Solution Summary

The solution explains and discusses how small changes in a system can lead to a large transformation change in organization within a complexity theory framework. References included.