Title: Adaptive organisations and environmental change

Authors: Hosein Piranfar

Addresses: Business School, University of East London, Barking Campus, Longbridge Road, Dagenham, Essex RM8 2AS, UK

Abstract: Organisational learning is normally the province of the adaptationist school of evolutionary thought. Considering that the most prominent evolutionary thinkers are gravitating to a synthetic outlook in which adaptation and selection are combined to provide a more practical, environmentally oriented view of learning, the paper makes an attempt to analyse some of the major works in this field, providing more practical examples from industry. The focus is on a particularly new development in organisational learning that seems to move away from March to advocate Simon|s |near decomposability and hierarchy| in order to facilitate |intelligent| adaptation. This kind of adaptation is particularly responsive to the environment, moving between first-order and second-order adaptation as the situation requires. The distinction from contingency school is that in the evolutionary view organisations respond and at the same time transform themselves.

Keywords: organisational learning; epistacy; evolution; core business; environment; adaptive organisations; environmental change; agile systems; agile management; organisational adaptation; selection; synthetic adaptation; corporate spin-offs; intelligent learning; guided adaptation.

DOI: 10.1504/IJASM.2006.010949

International Journal of Agile Systems and Management, 2006 Vol.1 No.2, pp.194 - 209

Published online: 19 Sep 2006 *

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