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Framework for the role of self-organization in the handling of adaptive challenges
Volume: 11, Issue 2
This paper extends the concept of self-organization from the natural sciences to management and proposes a framework for the role of self-organization in the handling of adaptive challenges by enterprises. The process of self-organization is a characteristic of those complex adaptive systems that are far-from equilibrium, and results in the creation of order in a system by the internal interactions between agents leading to stronger adaptive capability. This paper presents a synthesis of the concept of self-organization suitable for management with communication as its central focus. Results from an empirical study in three Australian small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) indicate that an adequate level of three key factors—trust level, open communication and strength of the value system in an enterprise—is needed for self-organization to occur.