A STUDY OF GROUP DECISION MAKING AND COMMUNICATION PATTERNS UNDER CONDITIONS OF STRESS AND OVERLOAD, WHEN THE PARTICIPANTS ARE PERMITTED TO FUNCTION AS A SELF-ORGANISING SYSTEM.
Final technical rept., 1 Jan-31 Dec 63.
SYSTEM RESEARCH LTD RESEARCH LABS RICHMOND (ENGLAND)
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Experiments on group decision making under conditions tat can be automatically and adaptively controlled are described. Pilot experiments were conducted with three-person groups, in which a trajectory-interception task was split into three sequentially dependent sub-tasks, detection, coding, and decision. The original design was modified to a two-person game consisting of two sub-tasks which could be assigned, jointly or severally to the two players in five different ways. Only three of the sub-task assignments were utilized. A strategy was designed to determine how these might be adaptively varied to counteract the effects of stress and overload. The strategy embodies two decision rules, one specifying the time of reassignment, and one the choice of reassignment. This strategy was tested and compared to weaker strategies embodying just one adaptive decision rule. Statistical analysis of the data showed that the two-rule strategy gives significant increases in efficiency, but weaker strategies are likely to be worse that the maintenance of fixed sub-task assignments. Whenever there is a reliable warming-up or settling-in period after sub-task reassignments, the time-course efficiency can be changed without raising the overall efficiency. See also AD-428 615 Author