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Graduation thesis at Bocconi University

Complex System Analysis in the firm reality

A predictive and normative model based upon complexity science theory.

Thesis Abstract

Business strategies have recently raised their articulation degree to cope with a growing ambient turbulence. The business strategy theories that have been developed since the 60's seemed to be always a step behind the evolving ambient events, being able to explain what had just happened, but missing (sometimes greatly) to forecast what was about to happen.

Theorists in this field have been inclined to dismiss this phenomenon as turbulence: a random factor built in reality and impossible to manage.

But recently, a new science has tried to deal with all that chaos that reality seems to carry. It has been called the science of complexity; with the effort of various disciplines, as genetics, IT, cybernetics, mathematics, physics, chemistry, philosophy, biology, logic, economics, psychology, neurology and many more, the complexity science has been able to deal with many aspects of reality that we though to be totally random.

My thesis is that the complexity science is the rightful owner of the epistemological instruments capable to explain what is called turbulence by business strategy.

To prove this, I built an analytic structure named Emergence Analysis, or "the analysis of the capabilities emerging from organization of less complex elements in a more complex system", and the relationships between those emerging entities. The result is a model family called Resource Results Relationship Models (to be short, 3R models).

Then, I apply a 3R model to a practical case of a small Italian firm, "living" in a greatly turbulent ambient, showing that the model is able to explain the history of that firm, and that the same model would have forecast the evolution of an initial situation.

Up to date, I hadn't any occasion to apply the 3R model again, nor to develop it further towards a dynamic model, but the evidence of everyday life, and further studies in the field of the complexity science (genetics algorithms, fractals, etc.) confirmed again the argumentation I wrote in my thesis.

More details will be available if you contact me at my e-mail address.