The Virtual Design Team: Designing Project Organizations as Engineers Design Bridges

Journal of Organization Design, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp. 14-41, 2012

28 Pages Posted: 5 Dec 2012 Last revised: 14 Jan 2015

See all articles by Raymond E. Levitt

Raymond E. Levitt

Stanford University, Global Projects Center

Date Written: August 1, 2012

Abstract

This paper reports on a 20-year program of research intended to advance the theory and practice of organization design for projects from its current status as an art practiced by a handful of consultants worldwide, based on their intuition and tacit knowledge, to: an 'organizational engineering' craft, practiced by a new generation of organizational designers; and an attractive and complementary platform for new modes of 'virtual synthetic organization theory research.' The paper begins with a real-life scenario that provided the motivation for developing the Virtual Design Team (VDT), an agent-based project organizational simulation tool to help managers design the work processes and organization of project teams engaged in large, semi-routine but complex and fast-paced projects. The paper sets out the underlying philosophy, representation, reasoning, and validation of VDT, and it concludes with suggestions for future research on computational modeling for organization design to extend the frontiers of organizational micro-contingency theory and expand the range of applicability and usefulness of design tools for project organizations and supply-chain networks based on this theory.

Keywords: virtual design team, designing project organizations, organization design

Suggested Citation

Levitt, Raymond E., The Virtual Design Team: Designing Project Organizations as Engineers Design Bridges (August 1, 2012). Journal of Organization Design, Vol. 1, No. 2, pp. 14-41, 2012, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2183162

Raymond E. Levitt (Contact Author)

Stanford University, Global Projects Center ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

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