It is natural for interacting organisational actors and environmental agents to experience complexity asymmetries. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the balancing of these complexities at a level of performance that not only maintains the organisation’s viability but also the health of its ecosystem.
Ashby (1964) proposed variety, or the number of possible states of a situation, as a measure of complexity and the Law of Requisite Variety as an ontology and heuristic for complexity management strategies. Following these propositions Beer’s variety engineering (Beer, 1979) is a construct to design these strategies.
This paper offers epistemological and methodological considerations to discuss the viability and performance of organisational systems.
Measuring organisational performance needs powerful methodological support. This paper offers to some extend this support but it needs further development.
Performance is related to the concept of dynamic capabilities, which in recent times has had important practical implications.
Though the concepts of this paper have a long history, their methodological articulation is original.
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