This article explores how complexity theory can help marketers to understand a market and to operate within it. Essentially, it argues that complexity theory has the potential to provide both global and some local explanations of markets and is complementary to local theories like relationship marketing that may be more familiar to marketing managers. It establishes four types of complex systems that might be used to model social systems. Of these four types, complex adaptive systems seem most appropriate to describe markets. This is illustrated in an investigation of Honda in the global automobile industry. Implications for marketing managers centre on the need to understand feedback loops at many levels of a path‐dependent system that are inherently difficult to predict and control.
Wollin, D. and Perry, C. (2004), "Marketing management in a complex adaptive system: An initial framework", European Journal of Marketing, Vol. 38 No. 5/6, pp. 556-572. https://doi.org/10.1108/03090560410529213Download as .RIS
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