A decision theory perspective on complexity in performance measurement and management

Alexander, Anthony, Kumar, Maneesh and Walker, Helen (2018) A decision theory perspective on complexity in performance measurement and management. International Journal of Operations and Production Management, 38 (11). pp. 2214-2244. ISSN 0144-3577

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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to apply the aspects of decision theory to performance measurement and management (PMM), thereby enabling the theoretical elaboration of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity in the business environment, which are identified as the barriers to effective PMM.

Design/methodology/approach – A review of decision theory and PMM literature establishes the Cynefin framework as the basis for extending the performance alignment matrix. Case research with seven companies explores the relationship between two concepts underexamined in the performance alignment matrix – internal dominant logic (DL) as the attribute of organisational culture affecting decision making, and the external environment – in line with the concept of alignment or fit in PMM. A focus area is PMM related to sustainable operations and supply chain management.

Findings – Alignment between DL, external environment and PMM is found, as are instances of misalignment. The Cynefin framework offers a deeper theoretical explanation about the nature of this alignment. Other findings consider the nature of organisational ownership on DL.

Research limitations/implications – The cases are exploratory not exhaustive, and limited in number. Organisations showing contested logic were excluded.

Practical implications – Some organisations have cultures of predictability and control; others have cultures that recognise their external environment as fundamentally unpredictable, and hence there is a need for responsive, decentralised PMM. Some have sought to change their culture and PMM. Being attentive to how cultural logic affects decision making can help reduce the misalignment in PMM.

Originality/value – A novel contribution is made by applying decision theory to PMM, extending the theoretical depth of the subject.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Performance measurement, sustainability, supply chain management, case study, alignment, decision processes
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > Management
Subjects: H Social Sciences
H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Depositing User: Anthony Alexander
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2018 10:29
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2021 17:22
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/73658

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