Organization and Systems Theory Toolset

Joana Geraldi, Josef Oehmen, Christian Thuesen, Pedro Parraguez Ruiz

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook chapterResearchpeer-review


This chapter describes three different facets of complexity: structural complexity, uncertainty and socio-political complexity. It explores five strategies for dealing with project complexity based on streams of work in Organization Theory and the wide field of organizing: network analysis, systems dynamics, modularization, antifragility and mindfulness. Complicated systems have a large number of interdependent elements, yet they are predictable and linear. Complex systems, in turn, cannot be predicted and have a high degree of self-organization. Classic project management would suggest managing complexity by breaking down the system into manageable pieces and integrating different pieces in a coherent way. In a power plant engineering project, the project manager wanted to better understand what the “real” communication pathways between his project organization and to outside suppliers were. System dynamics models can be crucial to gain clarity regarding both the structural complexity and, through simulation runs, the dynamic complexity of a project.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEvolving Toolbox for Complex Project Management
EditorsAlex Gorod, Leonie Hallo, Vernon Ireland, Indra Gunawan
Number of pages19
Place of PublicationBoca Raton, FL
PublisherCRC Press
Publication date2019
ISBN (Electronic)9780429197079
Publication statusPublished - 2019
SeriesComplex and Enterprise Systems Engineering Series

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