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Chapter 6 Complexity theory and affect structure: a dynamic approach to modeling emotional changes in organizations

Emotions and Organizational Dynamism

ISBN: 978-0-85724-177-1, eISBN: 978-0-85724-178-8

ISSN: 1746-9791

Publication date: 8 July 2010

Abstract

To reconcile theoretical discrepancies between discrete emotion, dimensional emotion (positive vs. negative affect), and the circumplex model, we propose the bifurcation model of affect structure (BMAS). Based on complexity theory, this model explores how emotion as an adaptive complex system reacts to affective events through negative and positive feedback loops, resulting in self-organizing oscillation and transformations between three states: equilibrium emotion, discrete positive and negative emotion in the near-equilibrium state, and chaotic emotion. We argue that the BMAS is superior to the extant models in revealing the dynamic connections between emotions and the intensity of affective events in organizational settings.

Citation

Li, Y., Ashkanasy, N.M. and Ahlstrom, D. (2010), "Chapter 6 Complexity theory and affect structure: a dynamic approach to modeling emotional changes in organizations", Zerbe, W.J., Charmine E. J., H. and Neal M., A. (Ed.) Emotions and Organizational Dynamism (Research on Emotion in Organizations, Vol. 6), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 139-165. https://doi.org/10.1108/S1746-9791(2010)0000006010

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2010, Emerald Group Publishing Limited