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OFAI-TR-2012-01 ( 399kB PDF file)

Towards the development of a conceptual framework for an applied theory of problem structuring for complex agents: Questions to Luhmann's Social System Theory

Karl Neumayer, Paolo Petta

This extended abstract provides a snapshot of the current status of our efforts aimed at the development of a principled approach to corporate strategy consulting. This research is motivated by the need to improve the quality of strategic decision making of enterprises as complex agents. To this end, we take a step back and propose a paradigmatic reconceptualisation of the foundations of decision making in terms of processes underlying Problem Structuring, with implications in particular for the identity of complex agents, the notion of rationality, as well as the shaping of decision processes. The two interrelated main components are the transpersonal Weinhaus conceptual modelling framework and a structured method for the development, implementation, and verification of sound interventions. A key guideline is our aim to enable the identification of relevant, practical, and verifiable interventions. Against this body of work, we can formulate a number of candidate questions to Social Systems Theory to discuss at the Symposium, so as to: critically review our achievements and ascertain the scope of applicability of our model, identify directions and means of improvements, look for answers to open challenges, and understand the potential for a reformulation in Social Systems Theory terms.

Keywords: Corporate strategy consulting, Enterprise modelling, Transpersonal modelling, Action theory, Theory of social systems, Agent-based modelling, Business modelling,

Citation: Neumayer K., Petta P.: Towards the development of a conceptual framework for an applied theory of problem structuring for complex agents: Questions to Luhmann's Social System Theory. Technical Report, Österreichisches Forschungsinstitut für Artificial Intelligence, Wien, TR-2012-01.
(Extended version of the extended abstract appearing in the proceedings of the 21st European Meeting on Cybernetics and Systems Research (EMCSR 2012), April 10-13, Vienna, Austria (EU), BCSSS Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science, Vienna, Austria (EU))