Sunday, December 19, 2010

Group Intelligence

This is interesting! Groups are smarter than individuals:

Group IQ
The new work is part of a growing body of research that focuses on understanding collective behavior and intelligence — an increasingly relevant topic of research in an age where everything from scientific progress to entrepreneurial success hinges on collaboration. Embedded in a century’s worth of Broadway shows, the interactions of online communities, or the path a ball travels between soccer players, researchers are finding hints about how individual people contribute to make a group creative and successful.
The interest is fueled in part by the Internet, which provides an unprecedented opportunity for people to join and leave groups, unbounded by geography. In the digital age, interactions between people are also creating a huge stream of data, giving scientists new ways to glean precise insights about how complex, aggregated behaviors arise. What they are finding is that groups, as entities, have characteristics that are more than just a summing up or averaging of those of its members.
“Intuitively, we still attribute too much to individuals and not enough to groups. Part of that may just be that it’s simpler; it’s simpler to say the success of a company depended on the CEO for good or bad, but in reality the success of a company depends on a whole lot more,” said Thomas W. Malone, director of the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence and senior author of the recent study, published in the journal Science. “Essentially what’s happening as our society becomes more advanced and more developed is that more things are done by groups of people than by individuals. In a certain sense, our intuitions about how that works haven’t caught up with the reality of modern life.”
 Creating online communities for your organization can tap into this group IQ. I'll keep saying it! We have an enormous amount of untapped knowledge and intelligence within our regions and organizations. Lets start tapping into it! We can't afford not to.

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