Introduction

With the increasingly fiercer competition in the marketplace for industrial product this can be argued to ask for innovative solutions in terms of technologies, practices and products. Manufacturing cladistics sets out to explore available solutions both from literature and through field research. In order to better understand and visualize the levels of relationships cladistic classification is presented, supplemented by a hierarchical or Linnaean classification. This paper takes such an approach. And it means to try and select for the appropriate manufacturing Species that will both sustain in the present environment and be favorable in a rapidly changing market environment.

The paper firstly presents principles of the evolutionary aspects of cladistics and Linnaean classification. And then tries to understand the inherent diversional capacity of a Species through exploring Darwin1 and his idea of natural selection through the preservation of favorable variation and the rejection of injurious variations.

A discussion follows on variation or diversity as a prerequisite for evolution, organizational change2,3 and survival. The variation in behavior amongst players in the environment is then discussed in light of the concept of evolutionary stable strategies4, where interactive dependencies are developing the strategies5.

The paper then discusses how manufacturers can make sense of variety and thus make strategic choices for change. This is followed by the discussion of the evolution of manufacturing Species and the development of its classification system.

Finally, the discrete manufacturing systems is presented. A selection of varieties of the ideal / textbook manufacturing Species are presented and discussed.

Relationships, variations and the evolutionary aspects of cladistics

McCarthy6 points out that understanding and making sense of organizational variety, change and survival has long been a concern to academics involved with the management of change within several field of management.

Campbell7 advocates not to focus on the direction of evolution but rather on the underlying process of variation and selective retention. An explanation of why organizational form may remain separate is required for a more correct classification of organizations. This is referred to by Campbell as the retention process. Following this tradition, Breslin8 based his research on the evolutionary mechanisms of variation, selection and retention. Thus why some Species and Varieties are retained within an environment will be addressed in the paper.

Cladistics is an evolutionary classification scheme that not only describes the attributes of existing entities but also the ancestral characteristics. Cladistics is also distinguished by its emphasis on parsimony and hypothesis testing, particularly falsification, rather than subjective decisions that some other taxonomic systems rely on. The principle of falsification advocated by Popper9 is based on his critical approach to science. This approach proceeds through trial and correction of error10. In other words, for Popper9, truth is understood as an approximation to truth.

Cladistics (ancient Greek, klados = branch) is really an approach to classify in which items are

grouped together based on whether or not they have one or more shared unique characteristics that come from the group’s common ancestor and are not present in more distant ancestors. Therefore, members of the same group are thought to share a common history and are considered to be more closely related. Change in characteristics occurs in lineages over time. It is only when characteristics change that we are able to recognize different lineages or groups.

The outcome of a cladistics analysis is a cladogram, a tree shaped diagram also called a dendrogram that represents a phylogenetic hypothesis on evolutionary relationships.

Erasmus Darwin, the paternal grandfather of Charles Darwin, formulated the first formal theories on evolution in Zoonomia – The laws of organic life11. He was concerned about how a species reproduced itself. His idea was that the strongest and most active animal should propagate the species, which thereby became improved. He thus anticipated natural selection.

The methods of cladistics were originally developed by linguists to classify the evolution of languages. Saphir12 investigated the evolutionary relationships between aboriginal American languages, and Kroeber and Chretien13 classified the relationship between Indo-European languages.

Cladistics was later adapted to biology by the German entomologist Willy Hennig14,15 while he was working on phylogenetic classifications. He referred to it as phylogenetic systematics. The use of the terms cladistics and clade was popularized by other researchers. Cladistics focuses on branching points in phylogenetic lineages16. It is at the branching points where variation and change occurs.

Classification, as a science, essentially began with biologists. Taxonomy and classification have been useful tools in managing the information on living entities, their genetics, form and behavior. The system of hierarchical biological classification was originally described by Carl Linnaeus (later von Linne) in his book, Systema Naturea originally written in 173517. Here von Linne describes systematics as the scientific inquiry into biological differences. The group into which organisms are placed are referred to as taxa (singular: taxon). The taxa are arranged in a hierarchy. He grouped Species according to shared physical characteristics. In Systema Naturea he divided nature into three Kingdoms: Mineral, Vegetable and Animal. His hierarchy of biological classification was limited to Kingdom, Class, Order, Genus, and Variety. The taxa are arranged in a hierarchy.

The essential aspects of cladistics and Linnaean hierarchy
Cladistics Linnaean hierarchy
• A cladogram represents a phylogenetic hypothesis on evolutionary relationships• A group’s common ancestors are not present in more distant ancestors• Items are grouped together based on whether they have one or more shared unique characteristics• It is only when characteristic change that we are able to recognize lineages or groups • Species grouped according to shared physical characteristics• Taxa are arranged in a hierarchy• In this paper hierarchy is represented by Class, Order, Family, Genus and Species

Darwin, variation and the evolution of Species

In his classification, Darwin1 uses a tree of life to explain the evolutionary history of biological Species. The Darwinian approach is about the long-term evolution of Species through variation. These variations are small but significant and result in irreversible changes to a Species. Darwin1 argues that Species are not completely unique, but they share morphological similarities. Species can therefore, he suggests, be classified into a pedigree or evolutionary tree (see Figure 1) based on the similarities between them.

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Fig. 1: Darwin’s (1859) evolutionary tree

In his evolutionary tree, Darwin1 basically illustrates how Species A after a thousand generations has produced two fairly well marked Varieties a1 and m1. They are slightly modified forms of their parent generation. And they have inherited those advantages that made their parent generation more successful than their competing Varieties. In his tree, Darwin1 shows the evolution of Varieties a1 to a2, and m1 to m2 etc., selected by nature through producing advantageous variations that make them sustain. Darwin1 argues that it is never straightforward to ascertain whether two forms should be defined as different Varieties of a Species or simply be ranked as two different Species. More specifically, the degree of difference between Varieties is much less than the difference between Species of the same Genus (hierarchical level above Species). The principle of divergence of character1 happens in the long-term, in thousands of generations, as Varieties become more distinct from each other. From an evolutionary perspective, Darwin1 argues that Varieties are actually Species in the process of formation. The split between Varieties is a major bifurcation of evolution leading to a new Species.

The most severe competition for survival is between members of the same Species and Species of the same Genus, because they frequent the same habitat for the same food1 using the same performance characteristics. Therefore, variability is important for the evolution and the sustainability of Species. For as Darwin1 observes in his chapter on Variation under Nature: ‘These individual differences are highly important for us, as they afford materials for natural selection to accumulate, in the same manner as man can accumulate in any direction individual differences in his domesticated producers’1. Darwin1 defines Natural Selection as the preservation of favourable variations and the rejection of injurious variations. Where many species of a genus have formed, on average many are still forming; and this holds good according to Darwin.

With variation under domestication1 we are not looking at a thousand generation perspective but at a one to maybe just a few generations perspective. Belyaev37 had a 20 year focus on a selective breeding program with the intention of reproducing a single major factor, namely a selection pressure for tame-ability of red foxes18. For the breeding of competitive sport-horses or racing sled dogs, where the major factor would be running performance, there would be 2 or 3 generations perspective only. If favorable results are not obtained within this perspective the experiment is discontinued. If successful a new 2 or 3 year perspective is taken. That is a more rapid change and it is selected for different characteristics than nature would have done. Also he has the opportunity of a greater variety choice. So he inter-breeds between greater Varieties and thus gains a different Variety in the offspring. He has intervened into the natural selection of nature. Belyaev37 argues that varieties or sub-varieties of cultivated or domesticated plants or animals differ more from each other than do individuals of any species or variety in nature. His conclusion to this is that the vast diversity is simply due to the domestic productions having been raised under conditions not so uniform as for the parent species having been exposed to under nature. He then argues that a high degree of variability is favorable as it gives nature more freedom to select from.

Mutation is an important mechanism by which variations arise. A mutation is a change in the chemical constitution of the chromosomes of an organism. This can produce an inherited change to the organisms which develop from them. It is due to the natural selection of strains of organisms which have become better adapted to their environment, as a consequence of genetic mutation, that the evolution of species has taken place. However, natural mutations are rare events, and when they occur they almost always produce injurious characteristics19. And this is about the changes in chromosome numbers that may create the divergence of a Species population, and thus produce a new Species20. Nature therefore favors a mutation that increases the fitness of the individual in its environment, and it culls mutations that decrease the fitness of the individual. In this way nature through natural selection is trying to economize in every part of its organization of a Species1. Dawkins4 argues that for all cases in which natural selection has favored genes for manipulation, those same genes have extended phenotypic effects on the body of the manipulated organism. By that he says that natural selection favors those genes that manipulated the world to ensure their own propagation. He defines the central theorem of extended phenotype as; an animal’s behavior tends to maximize the survival of the genes for that behavior, whether or not those genes happen to be in the body of the particular animal performing it. Dawkins4 argues that the difference between genes emerge only in their effect. That means the effects on the embryonic development and thus on bodily form and behavior. The successful genes are those that have beneficial effects on the adult and are likely to reproduce the same genes on to future generations. The phenotype is used for the bodily manifestation of the gene. Natural selection therefore according to Dawkins favors some genes rather than others because of the consequences they produce, that is their phenotypic effects.

Each gene of an individual has different alleles. An allele may be dominant or recessive to another allele. Where it is dominant, its phenotype may be a typical physical character of the organism. The phenotype of the recessive allele is a hidden physical character. Therefore, Dawkins4 like Darwin1 lays stress on competition as a means of economizing survival in an environment of limited resource. That is less-favored varieties must have become less numerous because of competition, and ultimately many of their lines must have become extinct. Early life was not capable of supporting an infinite number of replicator molecules.

In today’s generalized Darwinian terminology, genotype has been replaced by replicator. The replicator is the information/code/program/meme. The phenotype has been replaced by interactor. The interactor is the expression of the information.

Dawkins argues that at some point a remarkable molecule was formed by accident. This molecule was able to create copies of itself. He calls this the replicator. The becoming of life on Earth started off with populations of stable varieties of molecules. Stable in the sense that lasted a long time, replicated rapidly, or replicated accurately.

Table 1.

Variation and Darwin’s evolution of Species

Species classification Species can be classified into an evolutionary tree based on similarity
Difference between Varieties much less than difference between Species of same Genus
Divergence of character – Long-term development over thousands of generations
Survival of Species Firstly, competition between genes having an effect on embryo development. Secondly, difference between genes emerge only in their effect. Thirdly, successful genes are those that have a beneficial effect on the adult and are likely to reproduce the same genes on to future generations. Fourthly, the interactor is used for the bodily manifestation of the gene. Fifthly, severe competition between members of same Species. Sixthly, competition between different Species of same Genus
Evolution of Species Nature favors a mutation that increases the fitness of an individual in its environment. Mutation – Important mechanism by which variation arises. Dominant or recessive alleles – Recessive alleles are hidden physical characters. Varieties are Species in progress of formation
Natural selection Competition as a means of preservation of favorable variations; rejection of injurious variations
Variation under domestication Human intervention into pure natural selection in the domestic environment resulting in a different three level competition between; a) genes, b) members of same Species within the same household, c) members of the larger and more global domestic environment. Vast diversity of domestic production due to less uniform conditions?Less variety under natural selection due to more uniform conditions.

Variation or diversity as a prerequisite for organizational change and survival

A once sufficient variety of a species may later have become an injurious variation. When this is acknowledged as a fact an organization might try and imitate the closest ideal or typical text-book species. In the real world, however, there might choices between several varieties of this text-book species. Single varieties that might be a better fit into the very specific environment that the organization wants to pursue its existence and sustain.

Kondra and Hining21 say that there has to be some variation and diversity in organizational forms in order for change to occur. And this they argue institutional theory has tended to ignore. In general, diversity is understood as the state or quality of being different or varied22. Similarly, variation is understood as the act, process, condition, or result of changing or varying, i.e. diversity; variety being the quality or condition of being diversified or various. In these senses diversity and variety are synonymous.

Allen and McGlade2 found that variability is necessary for success in a rough and unpredictable environment. The climbing of the hills of a multidimensional performance landscape23,24. See Figure 2 below.

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Fig. 2: Multidimensional performance landscape

2 show that the mechanism of variability could be adjusted by the evolutionary process, itself, leading to the idea that evolution is driven by the noise to which it creates. For 3 the underlying mechanism of evolution involve micro-diversity within a system, and how this drives an evolving, emerging system structure that is characterized by a changing level of structural diversity. 3 says that in Darwinian thinking the micro-diversity that occurs is considered to be “random” and independent of the selection process that follows, while in human innovation we may think that there is intention, calculation and belief that may ‘channel’ diversity into some narrow range.

Darwin1 does take human innovation into consideration in the case of discussing elaborate variation under domestication as shown in the previous section. This is about the human intervention into the otherwise slow natural evolution of species. And this is what we intentionally make available in this paper by offering many variants of Species to strategically select from.

Table 2

Variation and organizational change

Variability Necessary for success in rough and unpredictable environment
Micro diversity Drives evolving, emerging organizational structure
Darwinian micro-diversity Random and independent in the natural selection of Species
Human intervention and innovation in variation under domestication

The struggle for existence within the environment and evolutionary stable strategy

The environment is tough and demanding. Darwin1 observed that a species during its lifetime is constantly suffering from enemies and competitors occupying the same place and searching for the same food. The enemy or competitor having only a slight favorable characteristic fitting a slight change in the environment will prevail. The less favorable species will decrease in number. This is the principle of survival of the fittest.

Darwin1 has called the principle of struggle for existence where any variation if it be profitable to an individual of any Species in relation other organic beings and to external nature, Natural Selection. Darwin’s idea is that nature tends to the preservation of that individual and in general this is inherited by its offspring.

Viewed from the generalized ‘Darwinian’ principles of variation, selection and retention, the successful variation is retained over time.

Dawkins4 argues that the concept of Evolutionary Stable Strategy (ESS) invented by Maynard Smith25 is one of the most important advances in evolutionary theory since Darwin. ESS is an application of Game Theory to biology.

Game Theory apples to a wide range of behavioral relations. To be fully defined Rasmusen26 refers to four essential elements of the game, namely the players of the game, the information, the actions available to each player at each decision point, and the payoffs for each outcome. Basically, these elements, along with a solution concept of their choosing, to deduce a set of equilibrium strategies for each player such that, when these strategies are employed, no player can profit by unilaterally deviating from their strategy.

The payoff for games in biology are often interpreted as corresponding to fitness. In biology, game theory has been used as a model to understand many phenomena. One such phenomenon is known as biological altruism. This is a situation in which an organism appears to act in a way to benefit other organisms and is injurious to itself.

An ESS is one where most members of a population adapt to it, cannot be bettered by an alternative strategy4. That is; the best strategy for the individual depends on what the majority of the population are doing. Since the rest of the population consists of individuals each trying to maximize his own, the only strategy that persists will be the one which, once evolved, cannot be bettered by any deviant individual. Essentially therefore, an ESS is stable not because it is particularly good for the individuals participating in it, but simply because it is immune to treachery from inside. Following a major environmental change, there will be a brief period of evolutionary instability. But once an ESS is achieved it will stay as selection will penalize deviation.

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Fig. 3: Activity triangle

The elements of game theory and ESS may be presented in Engeström’s27 activity theory model (Figure 3). This illustrates the interactive dependencies of the elements. Each player tries through his actions to maximize his own payoffs. To achieve this he applies his information, solution concepts and language. However, the population of the co-existing players are governed by biological altruism that are immune to strong individual actions that could work against the benefits of population as a whole to sustain in the environment. Similarly, the population takes advantage of the individual expertise that benefits the population.

The individual player has actions for his goals, whilst the population as such can be seen as part of an activity that is characterized by interacting elements directed towards a common more collective object. In that communicative interaction28 through dialogue23 becomes important. As the individual players, and thus their mutual community learn, their information, solution concepts and the ability to communicate through language evolve. The evolution of information and concepts takes place as a transformation of knowledge5. The knowledge transformation takes place in interactive communities through three levels of learning. Adaptive learning happens when people adapt to practices and systems developed by others. Reactive learning occurs when routine practices are applied in solving problems. Reactive learning is therefor about taking corrective action to perceived mistakes and learning from that. Expansive learning takes place as an expansion of the given context27. This form of learning may occur at the boundaries where people meet and interact to form new meanings that go beyond the limits of the individual alone. This multi-voiced interaction goes against the strong individual actions that could work against the benefits of the population. This influences the co-development of their ESS and thus the adaptation to the reality of a changing environment. This object gives a direction for the future. The equilibrium stable strategy slowly evolves. In the case of major environmental change, each individual’s actions become more dynamic until the population has made the ESS adapt to the changes. This ESS is retained over time, until it is subject to new major environmental changes.

Game Theory and Evolutionary Stable Strategy
Game Theory Elements Results
Players; Information; Actions; Payoffs; Solution concept Equilibrium strategy
Biological Altruism Actions beneficial to all involved organisms Injurious to single organism
ESS Immune to treachery from inside Will penalize deviation
Interactive dependencies of elements Benefits of population as a whole sustains
Major environmental change Interactive learning may enhance the evolution of the ESS; ESS evolves until population make ESS adapt to change; Successful ESS is retained over time

Manufacturers sense of variety and the strategic choices for change

Consumer expectations and the demands of mass customization and personalized products mean that manufacturers need to use optimum production layouts and systems, and to continually redesign and reorganize the manufacturing technologies and other resources. Reorganizing factories is expensive, loses valuable production time and it is often necessary to introduce new technologies and systems which are untried. Furthermore, manufacturing organizations form a very diverse population made up of firms with varying sizes, markets, operating methods, manufacturing systems and technologies used. The major challenge is to achieve the integration of this vast and diverse information set and to produce a solution, which is applicable to a wide range of diverse manufacturing organizations.

It was therefore needed to question the following; how can manufacturers make sense of variety and opportunities available for change and future survival, secondly, how can these change processes be explained in terms of the complexity of the interconnection of systems, processes and technologies. The paper tries to answer these questions.

The text-book species is only the preliminary stage of a human intervention for change starting at the level of the hierarchical and cladistics classification. The real is defined by the present identity and also by the result after exploring and implementing a new species or variety of species.

The mechanism by which variation can be presented as follows; the gene manipulation alias character state (CS) manipulation. From this point of view successful CSs are those that have beneficial effects on a manufacturing system, and that are likely to be reproduced in future generations of a manufacturing Species. CSs that have been tried out without beneficial effect are ignored in the historical account of Species evolution represented by the cladogram. In the real world these CSs can be said to be formed by accident or by trial and error activities. In that sense there is a competition among CSs that will characterize a manufacturing system.

It is not necessarily the CS that is more advanced or superior that wins but rather the CS that fits best with other CSs of the manufacturing system.

At the next level, a Species of manufacturing is represented by a number of slightly different varieties. Only varieties which endured competition sustains in the historical representation of the Species. Only these may produce new varieties themselves.

Changing or developing a manufacturing Species depends highly on the strategic choices being made. However, according to Game Theory, equilibrium strategies are employed that no player can deviate from. The payoff interpreted in biology corresponds to fitness where the best strategy for fitness depends upon what the majority is doing. That is it depends on what environment the majority of Species have created.

The evolution of manufacturing Species and the development of its classification system

To construct the 1st generation (basic) cladogram, the most evolutionary significant characters and states were selected and refined and this continued throughout the paper. These characters are phenotypic in nature. For the initial character search, two types of variables were identified – continuous and discrete. Discrete variables are typically used directly in the cladistic analysis. The coding used was preliminary and was amended when the ‘Determine the characters’ step has been completed.

To explain this further it is necessary to look at the distinction between the phenotypic and genotypic nature of the characters identified in the paper. Basically, the term phenotype is used to describe the observable characteristics or outward physical manifestations of an organism. The term genotype denotes the organism’s genetic make-up29. In terms of evolution, it is interesting to know how the phenotype and the genotype are related. Clearly, the genotype defines the phenotype, but how does the phenotype influence the genotype? In terms of natural selection this acts directly on the phenotype. The differential reproduction and survivorship depend on the phenotype. Therefore the phenotype is the observable expression of the genes and therefore the genotype that affects the traits30.

To figure out the true genotype, the family history can be examined or the organism can be bred and the offspring can show whether or not it had a hidden recessive allele. That is traditionally genes were seen as abstract entities dependent entirely on inferences from the phenotypes of organisms involved in various breeding experiments31. Given a knowledge of the phenotype the underlying causal genotype could be unambiguously inferred and vice versa. However, the actual correspondence between genotype and phenotype is problematic as any given genotype corresponds to many different phenotypes. The ambiguity in the relationship between genotype and phenotype requires special experimental techniques to reveal it31.

As mentioned previously, in today’s generalized Darwinian terminology, genotype has been replaced by replicator. The replicator is the information/code/program/meme. The phenotype has been replaced by interactor. The interactor is the expression of the information.

Similarly, as a cladistics exercise, it is therefore necessary to try and search out the interactor-replicator duality. That is to search out how an interactor manifestation is also represented in the history of a Species. As can be argued it is only when characteristic change and are shared we are able to recognize different lineages or groups. Then the characteristics have become more than an interactor manifestation. In practice, several generations of lineages or groups have to be worked at through testing and refuting in order to approach a more true representation of manufacturing Species relationships.

The observable characteristics from literature and industry are the interactors that have been subject to the selection by academics and the industrial environment respectively. The understanding and knowledge of these characteristics are the replicators that are made available for developing interactors in new situational contexts. This explains the interactor-replicator duality applied to manufacturing change and evolution in practice.

Using the cladistic approach, the evolutionary relationships between fifty-three candidate species manufacturing systems, using ‘descriptors’ drawn from a library of thirteen characters with established themselves a total of eighty-four states (see Table 2), are hypothesized, described and presented diagrammatically. The manufacturing species are then organized in a hierarchical classification with fifteen genera, six families and three orders under one ‘class’ of discrete manufacturing systems (see Figure 4).

The discrete manufacturing system

The characters and states describe Species that have been universally accepted text-book interpretations of manufacturing Species. These can be understood as Species that have under natural selection in the world of manufacturing. They are presented in Figures 2 and 3, and in tables 2 and 3.

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Fig. 4: 1st generation factual hierarchical classifications

The greatest innovation of Linnaeus was the general use of binominal nomenclature. That is the combination of a Genus name and a second term to identify the Species. For instance, in the Figure 4 above, Species 1 will be denominated Product Centred Workshop.

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Fig. 5: Primary species-defining characters and states

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Fig. 6: Factual 1st generation cladistics classification

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Fig. 7: 1st generation Variety-Defining and Secondary Product-, Process- and Systems character and states

Examples of favorable varieties of discrete manufacturing Species

McKelvey16 argues that as a consequence of ongoing environmental pressures and ongoing selection and retention of certain varieties, an organization takes on a certain form. That aspects of a given organization’s form which meets adaptive needs tend to be retained by the organization. Thus these forms or Species may be acquired by others facing similar environmental pressures.

In this example, it has been chosen to focus on the Varieties of the Product Centered Genus.

In the following section varieties to the Species shown in Figures 4 and 5 have been included in order to tell the evolutionary history of discrete manufacturing systems more comprehensively.

The suggested varieties are potentially new species in formation if successfully implemented. They may initially be experimented with for adapting a better fit to a different or more rapidly changing environment. Thus they are interventions into the more established and general text-book solutions. As such they are variations under intended domestications.

The out-group

The evolutionary history, depicted in the factual cladistics classification (See Figure 5) must again begin with an Out-Group32, which represents Self-Production (Species 0). This primitive system of manufacturing shares many of the characters to the In-Group or clade passed on from a common ancestor. Self-Production has a multi-product capability (CS 1-1) but manufactures articles for personal use, in a fixed position (CS 2-1), in an undercover site (CS 3-1) and usually in the place of living. Simple, universal, processing techniques and tools are employed, in the form of manual or hand tool manipulation (CS 4-1). All the necessary processes are performed and the full article produced, by the one person (CS5-1) in one go, i.e., without WIP or ‘buffer’ between the processes (CS 6-1). Primary material handling is primarily manual (CS 7-1) and, in some instances, mechanized (primitive pulleys, winches, etc.).

The earliest example of this would be in hunter and gatherer social systems in which clothing, simple tools and weaponry would be made for personal use, e.g., stone cutting tools, spears, dwelling materials, etc.33; more recent examples are craft items for personal use and decoration.

The Self-Production Species is an example of a well-established and primitive ESS. An ESS that through thousands of years has been beneficial to a population that has experienced no environmental change. And this is the reason why this Species has been selectively retained over time.

Multi-family order and fixed position family

The first Species to evolve from the common ancestor starting what is now the Class of Discrete Manufacturing is the Product Centered Workshop (Species 1)33 and belongs to the Multi-Product Order of manufacturing systems. In this Order, state-changes of the majority of the above-mentioned characters are evident (with the exception of material handling) in addition to two new characters to emerge – the style of management and the power over resources that are managed in project-managed products.

Again following Darwin’s idea in his evolutionary tree (Figure 1), the evolution shown in Figure 5, the branching points16 are caused by the changes in characteristics. And this creates varieties or potentially new species in formation.

The most significant CS change in this Order is the General Layout Approach with the fixed position layout (CS 2-1) being the most defining CS for the Fixed-Position Family and the process layout (CS 2-2) the most defining CS for the Process Family (Slack et al. 2006). The Fixed-Position Family comprises three Genera, the Product Centered, Remote, and Organizational.

Product centered genus

This paper proposes offshoots of the three Species Workshop (Species 1), Assembly Plant (Species 2), and Assembly / Fabrication Yard (Species 3). The offshoots or Varieties of the Species will be subject to scrutiny by their internal organizational environment and their external environment.

As mentioned above, the first Species of the Product Centered Genus is the Product CenteredWorkshop34; the primary difference from the Out-Group is that an entrepreneurial spirit (CS 8-1) has emerged where the manufactured products are sold to customers. That is, the multi-product capability is retained but is complemented with a multi-order capability (CS 1-2) and capable of make-to-order, make-to-stock, engineer-to-order, assemble/configure-to-order, and assemble-to-stock. Speculatively, this Species may have evolved thousands, perhaps millions of years ago when one or more people had a particular skill in producing articles, and another, a particular skill in hunting; the former may have agreed with the latter to supply weapons (bow and arrows, spears) in return for a share of the catch (Rose-Anderssen et al.2011). This Species is evident today with, for example, Specimens of jewelry makers, fly-fish makers, carpet weavers, clockmakers, along with a lot of the other handicrafts although the monetary system is now the primary trading mechanism.

The second Species in the Product Centered Genus is the Product Centered Assembly Plant (Species 2)35. In the Product Centered Assembly Plant, products are more complex, require more workers, who still perform significant product tasks, but only produce part of the product (CS 5-2) albeit a significant part. With more workers and more complex products and production sequences, a more centralized management capability is evident where skilled resources are scheduled according to non-routine tasks at hand (CS 8-2). Final assembly of cars around the turn of the twentieth century is a good example Specimen of this Species whereas the final assembly of large aircraft such as the A380 and Boeing 787 are more recent examples24,36.

The third and final Species in the Product Centered Genus is the Product Centered Assembly / Fabrication Yard (Species 3)35. Here, a change in the Location of Production character is evident featuring an on-site but uncovered (or external) dedicated facility (CS 3-2). This also represents a variation in the size and nature of the resource pool. Boat- and shipyards, throughout history, are good Specimens of this Species.

There are thirty Varieties of each of the Species in this Product Centered Genus (see Figure 6). To elaborate, the Workshop, Assembly Plant and the Assembly / Fabrication Yard may exhibit one of all states of the Variety-Defining, Specific Order Type character (see Table 3) such as make-to-order (CS 14-1), make-to-stock (CS 14-2), engineer-to-order (CS 14-3), assemble/configure-to-order (CS 14-4) or assemble-to-stock (CS 14-5). Of the Universal Process Capability, each Species may exhibit just the manual and/or hand/power tool (CS 15-1), but may primarily employ any of the states of the Modular Universal Process Capability character: modular mechanized machine tools (CS 16-1), or modular CNC machine tool/centers (CS 16-2). And finally, the three Species may display one of two Product Centered Layouts – the standalone (CS 17-1) or the parallel production (CS 17-2). As an example, a Variety of the Product Centered Workshop Species, may be identified and named a Parallel, Modular CNC Machine Tool, Engineer-to-Order Product Centered Workshop.

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Fig. 8: The varieties of the species of the Product Centered Genus: Workshop, assembly plant and assembly/fabrication yard

The paper suggests a multi-level approach of variation, selection and retention.

At level 1, a genetic analogy is presented. This is about the phenotypic or interactor manifestations of the character. The concern is about manifestations that have beneficial effects on the manufacturing organization as such. From the position of ESS one should consider the competition versus the adaptation of single characters of a variety. That is the action each of them exerts within the character population of the specific Variety. However, the collective object of the Variety would be to achieve an ESS that makes the Variety sustain into the future. This is valid until the Variety is subject to new and major external environmental change.

The information or solution concept held by the player as a character should not work against the benefits of the character population as a whole for the specific Variety. It must be adapted to the overall functioning of the elements of the internal variety Game. For example, it is a disadvantage if one character of a Variety is about running at high speed when the other characters does not fit high speed and the aim of the Variety is not about high speed. In practice this level is about the fitness of the Variety within itself.

At level 2, the concern is about the fitness of the Variety within the external environment. The variety should be favorable in its intended environment. At the same time it should in the long run have adapted to the other competitors / players in the Game where a mutual ESS assist the larger and interdependent manufacturing community sustain. The idea being that no manufacturing player can profit by unilaterally deviating from a shared ESS.

At level 3, comes the implementation of a new manufacturing Variety through human action. Choosing and implementing an appropriate Variety from the classification may assist a manufacturer moving into the future. The manufacturer is likely to firstly choose a variant that do not deviate much from their present Variety of the text-book manufacturing Species. This is also costly change to embark on. However, to achieve a more successful result, it is necessary to determine which environment they want to exploit for the future. Then they need to try and understand which Variety of their Species could best fit this environment. This is a collective effort where ideally it should involve all the players affected by the changes. Human behavior is always complex. Therefore the collective effort is necessary for achieving benefits for the organization as a whole. The individual player’s hands on expertise, in terms of information and solution concepts, should through communicative interaction be directed towards the object that gives a vision for the future. The individual player’s actions would be governed by biological altruism in terms of social rues they have co-developed in order to successfully collaborate on what is beneficial for their work community and hence their manufacturing organization.

Conclusions

The manufacturing classifications in this paper has been produced in order for manufacturers to explore the opportunities available in way of best practice solutions for their manufacturing systems improvements.

Through a combination of cladistics and Linnaean classifications, the paper explores the Darwinian idea of natural selection through the preservation of favorable variations and the rejection of injurious variations.

In the paper the focus is on the underlying evolutionary processes of variation and selective retention. The evolutionary aspects of cladistics and Linnaean classification is explored in order to better understand and visualize the levels of relationships between species.

Organizational variety is presented in the evolutionary classification scheme of cladistics, where both the attributes of existing entities and also the ancestral characteristics are described. The cladogram represents a phylogenetic hypothesis on evolutionary relationships.

The Linnaean classification is a hierarchical supplement to the cladistics. The scientific inquiry is into biological differences arranged in a hierarchy. Species are grouped according to shared physical characteristics.

Darwin1 is concerned about the long-term evolution of species through variation. The idea being that variations are small but significant and may result in irreversible changes to a species.

Specie can be arranged into an evolutionary tree based on similarity. There the difference between varieties are much less than between species of the same Genus.

The survival of species may be characterized by the following; (1) the competition between genes will have an effect on embryo development, (2) the difference between genes emerge only in their effect, (3) successful genes are those that have a beneficial effect on the adult and that are likely to reproduce the same genes on to future generations, (4) the interactor is used for the bodily manifestation of the gene, (5) there is severe competition between members of the same species, and (6) there is competition between species of the same genus.

The evolution of species is about variation. Mutation is the important mechanism by which variation arises. Nature favors a mutation that increases the fitness of an individual in its environment. Varieties are species in formation.

Natural selection is characterized by competition as a means of preservation of favorable variations and the rejection of injurious variations.

In variation under domestication, human selection intervention into pure natural selection in the domestic environment result in competition; (a) between genes, (b) between members of the same species within the same household, and (c) between members of the larger and more global domestic environment. There is a vast diversity of domestic production due to less uniform environmental conditions than is the case in the nature.

Variability is necessary for success in a rough and unpredictable environment. It is micro-diversity that drives evolving, emerging organizational structures. Darwinian micro-diversity is characterized by random and independent natural selection of species. It is present through human intervention and innovation under domestication.

The struggle for existence has been viewed from the position of Game Theory and Evolutionary Stable Strategy (ESS). In Game Theory the elements of players, information, actions, payoffs and solution concept come together resulting in equilibrium strategies.

The population of co-existing players are governed by biological altruism were actions are beneficial to all players but is injurious to the single player.’

The ESS is immune to treachery from inside and will penalize deviation. There is thus an interactive dependency of the elements, and the benefits of the population as a whole to sustain.

In the case of major environmental change, interactive learning may enhance the evolution of the ESS.

The paper has tried to answer; (1) how manufacturers can make sense of variety and opportunities for future survival, (2) how can these processes be explained in terms of the complexity of interconnected systems. Character states that have had beneficial effects on various manufacturing systems are represented within the text-book species. Only varieties which endured competition have sustained in the historical representation of species.

The observable characteristics from literature are the interactors that have been selected. The knowledge and understanding of those characteristics are the replicators that are made available for developing interactors in new situational contexts.

The discrete manufacturing system was presented in terms of a factual hierarchical classification, primary species defining characters and states, factual cladistics classification and variety-defining characters and states. This was the basis for the discussion in the rest of the paper.

The paper has chosen to demonstrate the theories discussed through the examples on the Varieties of the Product Centered Genus. The idea is that aspects of a given organizational form meeting adaptive needs tend to be retained by the organization.

The factual cladistics classification had to start off with an out-group. Here the Self-Production Species. And this species shows many characters with the In-group.

The Self-Production Species is the result of a well-established ESS. An ESS that has become beneficial to the population of this Species, and has thus been selectively retained.

The paper presents three Species of the Product Centered Genus; Product Centered Workshop, Product Centered Assembly Plant, and Product Centered Assembly / Fabrication Yard. There are thirty Varieties of these Species in the Product Centered Genus.

The paper suggests a three-level approach to variation, selection and retention:

  • At level 1, a genetic analogy is presented. That is, the phenotypic or interactor manifestations is taken. The collective object of the Variety would be to achieve an ESS that can make the Variety sustain in the future.

  • At level 2, the concern is about the fitness of the Variety within the external environment. Here the competitors / players have achieved a mutual ESS to assist the interdependent manufacturing community sustainability.

  • At level 3, this is about the implementation of a new manufacturing Variety through human action. This is a collective effort where all the players affected by the changes should be involved. The individual player’s hands-on expertise are directed towards the object that gives a vision for the future. This is governed by biological altruism in order to successfully collaborate on what is beneficial to their work community.