AbstractIt is common to define a network organization as one that is fast and flexible in adapting to changes in the underlying environment. But besides the short-run advantages of adaptability, fast changes in the structure of the organization can also be detrimental in the longer run. This happens, in particular, because agents need to depend widely on that structure to channel appropriately (and thus speed up) search. I discuss the trade-off between adaptability and structural stability in a changing environment where, if the structure of the organization adjusts, information on the exact nature of the change becomes known only with some lag. The main conclusion obtained is that, as environment becomes more volatile, the optimal mode of the organization sharply switches from being totally flexible to being completely rigid, i.e. no intermediate configurations are essentially ever optimal. This has stark implications on the dichothomy of stability versus change that has been highlighted by recent organization literature.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by European University Institute in its series Economics Working Papers with number ECO2008/09.
Date of creation: 2008
Date of revision:
Contact details of provider:
Postal: Badia Fiesolana, Via dei Roccettini, 9, 50016 San Domenico di Fiesole (FI) Italy
Web page: http://www.eui.eu/ECO/
More information through EDIRC
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- D20 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - General
- D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search, Learning, and Information
- D85 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Network Formation
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Radner, Roy, 1993. "The Organization of Decentralized Information Processing," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 61(5), pages 1109-46, September.
- Van Zandt, Timothy, 1999. "Real-Time Decentralized Information Processing as a Model of Organizations with Boundedly Rational Agents," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 66(3), pages 633-58, July.
- Mathias Dewatripont & Patrick Bolton, 2004.
"The firm as a communication network,"
ULB Institutional Repository
2013/9599, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
- Mathias Dewatripont & Patrick Bolton, 1994. "The firm as a communication network," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/9595, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
- Mathias Dewatripont & Patrick Bolton, 1996. "The firm as a communication network," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/9597, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
- Luis Garicano, 2000. "Hierarchies and the Organization of Knowledge in Production," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 108(5), pages 874-904, October.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Marcia Gastaldo).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.