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Computational Models of Human Organization Dynamics

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Contract: N/A
Agency Tracking Number: 25488
Amount: $99,901.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Solicitation Year: N/A
Award Year: 1994
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): N/A
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
3000 Patrick Henry Drive
Santa Clara, CA 95054
United States
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Gregg Courand
 (408) 562-1154
Business Contact
Phone: () -
Research Institution

The importance of modeling organizations and organization dynamics is becoming widely recognized. There is an emerging understanding that individuals do not usually solve large-scale problems, or necessarily even discover their existence (as individuals). Instead, organized groups of individuals embody the concepts, resources, and incentives that lead them to enunciate large-scale problems and opportunities and undertake appropriate large-scale responses. Our objective is to develop a computational model of organizations, suitable for capturing its objectives and structure, interpreting and predicting its behavior at various levels of abstraction, and detecting evolution of the organization's strategies relative to important objectives. Toward this end we have developed an organization model and an associated methodology that guides the acquisition of organization cases, interpretation of organizational data, and prediction of future behavior. We show that the methodology provides strong protection against modeling bias. All of this is illustrated in the context of a real example of organizational decision-making -- the decision by the political, scientific, and military elite to develop nuclear devices in South Africa. Anticipated Benefits: Any applications in which enough individuals are concerned with understanding and/or directing the activties of enough individuals, so that an explicit model of the organization of the latter individuals is required, will benefit. Commerical applications include businesses that need tools and methodologically sound consultancy services to get the right information to the right individuals in the organization at the right time (e.g., competitive edge, handle crisis situations).

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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