Toward a Model of Organizational Problem-Solving

Prabhakar Krishnamurthy, Michael Fehling, Paul D. Collopy, and Gregg Courand

We describe ongoing research to develop a simulation model of organizational behavior. We aim to use this model to test our more general theory of organizational performance, communication, and organizational design. Because organizational phenomena are complex, a simulation-based approach is warranted. As Simon (1981) notes: i) Simulation offers insight into even well understood phenomena. Even with correct premises it may be very difficult to discover what they imply. ii) Simulation is useful even if we know little about the natural laws that govern the system’s inner behavior. Especially for artificial and adaptive systems, we are interested in aspects arising from the organization of the parts, dependent on only a few properties of individual components. So, we can simulate the system by reproducing few details of the actual system being simulated.

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