My comments on whether complexity is a fad or a frontier are perhaps going to be somewhat more negative that those in preceding chapters, and I believe somewhat more substantive about what complexity theory is all about. In my opinion, the future of complexity theory’s usefulness as a way of understanding management rests on the following six propositions:
In this chapter Bill Frederick suggests that complexity theory provides a frontier of organizational thought that enables us to understand how businesses are driven by the natural forces described in such fields as physics, evolution, and ecology.
|• Proposition 1: The mechanistic reductionist picture of science drawn by complexity theorists is seriously overdone, exaggerated, and a misleading characterization of science and its accomplishments. It posits a false dichotomy of linear and nonlinear processes in nature. All that is reliably known about the world of nature rests on science as practiced in the West for several hundred years.|
|• Proposition 2: The relational link between complexity theory and Darwinian theory must be maintained rather than weakened or diluted or denied. Emer-|