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Past, Present and Future of Problem Structuring Methods

J. Rosenhead
The Journal of the Operational Research Society
Vol. 57, No. 7, Special Issue: Problem Structuring Methods (Jul., 2006), pp. 759-765
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4102261
Page Count: 7
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Past, Present and Future of Problem Structuring Methods
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Abstract

To be able to exploit the future opportunities for Operational Research (OR), we need to prepare for them now. To conceptualize alternative futures for OR, we need to understand the potentialities of the present. To understand the present, we need to have a grasp of the past history that gave us the OR that we have, rather than some other analytic practice. OR was thrown up by a situation where traditional management methods were proving inadequate to handle the growing complexity of organizational arrangements. Problem structuring methods (PSMs) in turn were generated out of a sense that the trajectory of OR had led it away from important areas of social decision-making. PSMs have made great strides but are still encountering barriers to acceptance. This paper will explore the factors that presently constrain PSMs, and what developments could take them into new fields.

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