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There is no consensus on a definition of complex systems or complex adaptive systems. Both terms are frequently used interchangeably within the literature. Rather, it is much easier to look at the characteristics of complex systems, such as self-organization, information processing, adaptation, resilience, emergence, and cooperation versus competition. Examples of complex adaptive systems include cities, organizations, communities, countries, the economy, ecosystems, technology, the immune system, and ant colonies, among others as these systems exhibit the characteristics noted in the previous sentence. Principles learned from the study of one type of complex system are typically applicable to other complex systems.

To prepare for this Discussion, review the resources and reflect upon complexity theory. Consider how it is applicable to leadership and management and how you may use it within your Final Project organization.

Post an explanation of complexity theory that is applicable to the leadership and management of organizations. Provide a specific example, either from your own experience or from your readings, to support your explanation. Then, explain the theory and evaluate how you might use it to inform your understanding of your own organization.

Resources
Uhl-Bien, M., & Marion, R. (Eds.). (2008). Complexity leadership, part 1: Conceptual foundations. Charlotte, NC: Information Age.
Chapter 1, "Complexity Theory for Organizations and Organizational Leadership" (pp. 1-16)

Management Theories, Management Studies

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