Advertisement

A Complex Adaptive System Framework for Management and Marketing Studies

  • Gianpaolo BasileEmail author
  • Gandolfo Dominici
Part of the Springer Proceedings in Complexity book series (SPCOM)

Abstract

This theoretical work aims to analyze the choice of strategic management activities, taking into account a complex systems perspective. Following this approach, we represent the firm as a complex adaptive system, in which the management must be able to develop and implement different behaviors in order to dynamically ensure the viability of the firm or system. This implies that the management governing the firm or system is capable of choosing, from among a number of heterogeneous entities, the relevant stakeholders within the competitive context and of creating and maintaining significant relationships with them, which are considered to be relevant in a turbulent environment.

As an expression of the relational dynamics between the direct and indirect stakeholders, the firm exchanges energy and information with the reference contexts, in order to survive. As part of these exchanges and adaptations, both the firm and its stakeholders disperse energy, producing a dissipative phenomenon (Prigogine I, Order out of chaos. In: Livingston P (ed) Disorder and order: proceedings of the Stanford international symposium (Sept. 14–16, 1981). Anma Libri, Saratoga, pp 41–60, 1984), which we describe—in an analogy with the second law of thermodynamics and complexity theory—as entropy.

Our research question is thus:

Can complex adaptive systems theory help decision makers to deal with the dynamism of organizations and brand in turbulent environments?

Through a theoretical and descriptive framework, we will draw our conclusions to this research question.

Keywords

Complex adaptive systems Management Marketing Dissipative systems Entropy 

Notes

Acknowledgements

To cope with regulation on Academic publishing we declare that although this study is based on a collaborative effort by all authors, Sects. 9.1 (Introduction), 9.2 (Theoretical Framework) and 9.7 (Conclusions) can be attributed to Gandolfo Dominici; while Sects. 9.3 (The Partially Open Adaptive Systems), 9.4 (The Adaptive Systems Approach in Marketing), 9.5 (Determinism vs. Complexity) and 9.6 (Entropy, Sustainability, and Curative Marketing Management) can be attributed to Gianpaolo Basile.

References

  1. 1.
    Ashby WR (1956) An introduction to cybernetics. Wiley, New YorkCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Barile S (2009) Management sistemico vitale. Decidere in contesti complessi. Giappichelli Editore, TurinGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Bass FM (1974) Theory of stochastic preference and brand switching. J Mark Res 2:1–20MathSciNetCrossRefADSGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Beer S (1966) Decision and control. Wiley, ChichesterGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Boltzmann L (1964) Lectures on gas theory (Dover Books on Physics). The Regents of the University of CaliforniaGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Boulding KE (1966) The economic of the coming spaceship Earth. In: Daly HE (ed) Toward in steady state economy. WH Freeman and Co, San FranciscoGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Capra F (1997) The web of life. Anchor Books, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Coveney P, Highfield R (1995) Frontiers of complexity: the search for order in a chaotic world. Ballantine Books, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Crane A, Desmond J (2002) Societal marketing and morality. Eur J Mark 36(5/6):548–569CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Czinkota M, Skuba C (2011) Global-the two faces of international marketing-effective marketing and ethical practices must exist together. Mark Manag 20(4):14–25Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Czinkota M, Skuba C (2013) Trade policy and international marketing. Marketing News, pp 22–25, May 2013Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Czinkota M, Kaufmann HR, Basile G (2014) The relationship between legitimacy, reputation, sustainability and branding for companies and their supply chains. Ind Mark Manag 43(1):91–101CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Dixon DF (1984) Makromarketing: a social system perspective. J Macromark 4(fall):1–17Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Dolan P (2002) The sustainability of sustainable consumption. J Macromark 22(2):170–181CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Dominici G, Basile G, Palumbo F (2013) Viable systems approach and consumer culture theory: a conceptual framework. J Organ Transform Soc Chang 10(3):262–285CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Dominici G, Palumbo F (2013) Decoding the Japanese lean production system according to a viable systems perspective. Syst Pract Action Res 26(2):153–171CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Dooley K (1996) A complex adaptive systems model of organizational change. Nonlinear Dynamics Psychol Life Sci 1(1):69–97CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Dowling GR (1983) The application of general systems theory to an analysis of macromarketing systems. J Macromark 3:22–32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Emery AR (1973) Preliminary comparisons of day and night habits of freshwater fish in Ontario lakes. J Fish Res Bd Can 30:761Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Emery FE, Trist EL (1969) The causal texture of organizational environment. In: Emery FE (ed) Systems thinking. Penguin, Harmondsworth, pp 241–257Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Fantappié L (1942) Teoria Unitaria del Mondo Fisico e Biologico. Di Renzo Editore, RomeGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Fantappié L (2011) Che cos’è la Sintropia. Principi di una teoria unitaria del mondo fisico e biologico e conferenze scelte. Di Renzo Editore, RomaGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Georgescu-Roegen N (1971) The entropy law and the economic problem. In: Daly HE (ed) Toward in steady state economy. WH Freeman and Co, San FranciscoGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Golinelli GM (2010) Viable systems approach. Governing business dynamics. CEDAM, PaduaGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Helfat CE (2007) Stylized facts, empirical research and theory development in management. Strateg Organ 5(2):185–192Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Hermiter JD (1974) A comparison of the entropy model and the Hendry model. J Mark Res 2:21–29CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Hibbert B, Wilkinson IF (1994) Chaos in the dynamics of markets. J Acad Mark Sci 22(3):218–233CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Holbrook M (2003) Adventures in complexity: an essay on dynamic open complex adaptive systems, butterfly effects, self-organizing order, coevolution, the ecological perspective, fitness landscapes, market spaces, emergent beauty at the edge of chaos, and all that jazz. Acad Market Sci Rev 1–5Google Scholar
  29. 29.
    Holland J (1999) Emergence: from chaos to order. Helix Books, Cambridge, MassachusettsGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Holland J (1999) Emergence: from chaos to order. Helix Books, Perseus Publishing, Reading, Cambridge, MassachusettsGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Kadirov D (2011) Macro-systems role of marketing: do we trade environment for welfare? J Macromark 31(4):359–375CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Kadirov D, Varey RJ (2011) Symbolism in marketing system. J Macromark 31(2):160–171CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Kangun N (1981) Marketing and entropy process in a new world view. In: Proceedings of the 1981 of American marketing association educators conference, n.47, ChicagoGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Kauffman S (1994) The origins of order: self-organization and selection in evolution. Oxford University Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Kaufmann HR, Loureiro SMC, Basile G, Vrontis D (2012) The increasing dynamics between consumers, social groups and brands. Qual Mark Res Int J 15(4):404–419CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Kelly K (1994) Out of control: the new biology of machines, social systems, and the economic world. Addison-Wesley, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Kelly K (1998) New rules for the new economy. Viking, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  38. 38.
    Kotler P (1980) Strategic planning and the marketing process. Business 30(3):2–9Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    Yolles M (1999) Management systems. A viable approach. Financial Times, LondonGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Layton RA (1989) Measures of structural change in macromarketing systems. J Macromark 9:5–15CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    Langton CG (1992) Artificial life II. Addison-Wesley, Redwood CityGoogle Scholar
  42. 42.
    Martin D, Schouten J (2012) Sustainable marketing. Pearson Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle RiverGoogle Scholar
  43. 43.
    Mason RB (2007) The external environment’s effect on management and strategy. A complexity theory approach. Manag Decis 45(1):10–28CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Maturana HR, Varela FJ (1980) Autopoiesis and cognition. The realization of the living. D. Reidel Publishing Company, Dordrecht, NetherlandsCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    Maturana HR (1975) The organization of the living. A theory of the living organization. Int J Man Mach Stud 7:313–332CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. 46.
    Monieson (1981) Marketing and the theory of dissipative structures. In: Proceedings of the 1981 of American marketing association educators conference, n.47, ChicagoGoogle Scholar
  47. 47.
    Prigogine I (1955) Introduction to thermodynamics of irreversible processes. Charles C.Thomas, SpringfieldsGoogle Scholar
  48. 48.
    Prigogine I, Stengers I (1979) La nouvelle alliance: Les métamorphoses de la science [The new alliance: the metamorphosis of science]. Gallimard, ParisGoogle Scholar
  49. 49.
    Prigogine I (1984) Order out of chaos. In: Livingston P (ed) Disorder and order: proceedings of the stanford international symposium (Sept. 14–16, 1981). Anma Libri, Saratoga, pp 41–60Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    Teece DJ (2009) The (new) nature and essence of the firm (with Christos N. Pitelis). Eur Manage Rev 6(1):5–15Google Scholar
  51. 51.
    Tetenbaum T (1998) Shifting paradigms: from Newton to chaos. Organ Dyn 26(4):21–32CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. 52.
    Reidenbach RE, Oliva TA (1983) Toward a theory of the macro systemic effects of the marketing function. J Macromark 3(2):33–40CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. 53.
    Vorhies DW (1998) An investigation of the factors leading to development of marketing capabilities and organizational effectiveness. J Strateg Mark 6:3–23CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. 54.
    Waldrop M (1992) Complexity. Penguin, LondonGoogle Scholar
  55. 55.
    Wiener N (1954) The human use of human beings. Houghton Mifflin Company, BostonGoogle Scholar
  56. 56.
    Winsor RD (1995) Marketing under conditions of chaos. Percol Metaph Models J Bus Res 34:181–189CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sociology and Political Science DepartmentBusiness Systems LaboratoryRomaItaly
  2. 2.Faculty of Arts and PhilosophyUniversity of SalernoSalernoItaly
  3. 3.Business Systems LaboratoryRomaItaly
  4. 4.Department S.E.A.S., Polytechnic SchoolUniversity of PalermoPalermoItaly

Personalised recommendations