Intelligent Organizations Powerful Models for Systemic Management


ISSN: 0368-492X

Article publication date: 11 April 2008




(2008), "Intelligent Organizations Powerful Models for Systemic Management", Kybernetes, Vol. 37 No. 3/4.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Intelligent Organizations Powerful Models for Systemic Management

Article Type: Book reports From: Kybernetes, Volume 37, Issue 3/4.

Intelligent Organizations Powerful Models for Systemic ManagementMarkus SchwaningerSpringerBerlin, Heidelberg, New York, NY2006i-xi, 240 pp. HardcoverISBN -10 3-540-29876-2/ISBN -13 987-3-540-29876-2Keywords: Cybernetics, Management science

This book has been written by Professor Dr Markus Schwaninger of The University of St Gallen, Institute of Management, Switzerland. The author is very well-known in the field and has published extensively. This text, we are told is:

An innovative book that opens a path to overcoming the crisis of management in the face of complexity. The systems approach on which this work is grounded enables the development of the new kind of intelligent organizations so urgently needed. Powerful models based on organizational cybernetics and system dynamics, are presented in a way that lets the reader immediately apply them in practice. This book will be a source for improvement in any kind of organisation, whether private or public, non-profit, large or small.

The book is made up of 11 chapters:

  1. 1.

    The first introduces the reader to the purpose of the book and to the innovative, systemic approach to cope with complexity.

  2. 2.

    The next three chapters lay out crucial concepts of systemic management.

  3. 3.

    In the fourth chapter a framework for the design of intelligent organizations is presented. This framework is made up of five dimensions.

  4. 4.

    Each of the ensuing chapters is dedicated to one of these dimensions: viz:

    • Activities (What the organization does) Chapter 5.

    • Structure (Preconditions for effective action) Chapter 6.

    • Behavior (The control of cognition-and emotion) Chapter 7.

    • Ethos and identity (Basic parameters of organisations) Chapter 8.

    • Time and organizational dynamics Chapter 9.

Chapter 10 presents an integrative perspective by reviewing the framework presented. Finally, Chapter 11 closes with a very brief synopsis and an outlook into the future.

An Appendix and a comprehensive set of References, together with an Index is included.

A full review of Dr Schwaninger's book is included in the book reviews of this journal.

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