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Coordination and Experimentation in M-Form and U-Form Organizations

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  • Yingyi Qian
  • Gerard Roland
  • Chenggang Xu

Abstract

We compare the performance of organizational forms (M-form and U-form) in experimenting with uncertain projects. In our framework, organizational forms affect the information structure of an organization and thus the way to coordinate changes. Compared to the U-form, the M-form organization achieves better coordination in "attribute matching" but suffers from coordination in "attribute compatibility" and less gains in specialization. The distinctive advantage of the M-form is its flexibility in choosing between small-scale and full-scale experimentation.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Chicago Press in its journal Journal of Political Economy.

Volume (Year): 114 (2006)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 366-402

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Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:v:114:y:2006:i:2:p:366-402

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Web page: http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/JPE/

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