2015 January

Building theory about evolution of organizational change patterns – Emergence: Complexity & Organization

Rogers et al. (2005: 20) supported Ross Ashby’s (1956) notion of a law of requisite variety which “posits that system variation needs to match the corresponding features of environmental demands if organization and collective action are to be effective” (Rogers et al., 2005: 20).

Elliott mention this law of requisite variety anywhere?


7 replies on “Building theory about evolution of organizational change patterns – Emergence: Complexity & Organization”

Mike –

I assume you ask this because of the word “requisite” being in the name of the law and the name of his model. I believe that’s just coincidence. The “requisite” in “Requisite Organization” refers to what is required by the nature of things, in particular, human nature. The “requisite” in Ashby’s law refers to the requirement that the number of states of a control mechanism must be greater than or equal to the number of states in the system being controlled. Elliott was certainly familiar with the system theory literature, but cannot recall anything he wrote that refers to that law.


Actually I was interested in Ashby’s idea of what was requisite which I think he captured well at the metalevel:)


You guys are making this way too complicated. I am sure by “requisite” he means, is that complex environments, require by the nature of things complex systems to adapt to those environments….or is that overly simplistic?


Mike, this is being overly simplistic, but is this article saying that an organization’s capability to adapt to change, is a function of its diversity (ideas, age, skill sets, gender, backgrounds, etc.)? A more complex internal system (heterogeneous) is better equipped than a more fixed, homogeneous internal system to deal with a complex set of external forces?/


Don’t know as I didn’t read all of it yet, but I do agree with you, about being overlysimplistic:)


Quit activating my high acceptance will you, and making fun of my struggle to stretch his F that is trying hard to develop his flex around T, with integrity!


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