Document Type

Conference Paper

Publication Date




Publication Title

Procedia Computer Science





Conference Name

Complex Adaptive Systems, 2016; Los Angeles; United States; 2 November 2016 through 4 November 2016


The introduction of new concepts is a driver of organizational evolution and transformation. A newly introduced concept can introduce new meaning that is disparate to existing understanding. A new concept may also be interpreted in multiple ways, thereby introducing several disparate meanings. The disparity is resolved through adaptation. The disparity introduces complex adaptive behavior to the organization, requiring suitable changes to its management and design. The development of corresponding doctrine for new concepts, and training for the organization's constituents become indispensable. In so doing, constituents can be involved in the adaptation process through direct participation, and thereby include the cognitive dimension. In this paper we present a means by which the complex adaptive behavior exhibited by an organization when new concepts and ideas are introduced can be studied. We apply the Pragmatic Idealism framework, which provides a theoretical construct where the domain of awareness is an abstraction of reality. This framework supports the coexistence of multiple perspectives and understanding. The framework allows for perspectives that are intrinsically correct, yet holistically incomplete. It includes the human cognitive component into cyber physical system providing a bridge between the physical and information dimensions. 2016 The Authors.


This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND:

Original Publication Citation

Canan, M., & Sousa-Poza, A. (2016). Complex adaptive behavior: Pragmatic idealism. Procedia Computer Science, 95, 73-79. doi:10.1016/j.procs.2016.09.295