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Title: Applying dynamical systems theory to the understanding of control phenomena in organizations
Author: Tse, Ngai Sang
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1993
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This thesis is concerned with enhancing our understanding, and hence our control over, the apparently random fluctuations of the time series of business variables in a framework of analysis which appeals to management's mental world of 'common sense' and 'causality'. Theoretical models of (i) a cost control system in a standard costing system setting, and (ii) a hypothetical firm and its business environment were proposed. They were constructed by referring to the concept of 'control' in organizations, to business system modelling, and to dynamical systems theory. The respective target variables of the models are the controlled cost item and the cash account balance. Various modes of steady state behaviour of the target variables were obtained by performing simulation experiments. The subsequent data analysis was conducted mainly in the framework of dynamical systems theory. The major findings of this research are consistent with the hypotheses that: 1. there exist deterministic explanations for the apparently random fluctuations in the behaviour of the business variables, 2. these deterministic explanations could enable managers to modify their control systems so as to reduce the apparently random fluctuations in the behaviour of the business variables.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available