Distributed Decisionmaking with Constrained Decision Makers. A Case Study,
MASSACHUSETTS INST OF TECH CAMBRIDGE LAB FOR INFORMATION AND DECISION SYSTEMS
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A specific distributed decisionmaking problem is formulated that includes processing load constraints on team members. Solutions are possible that place remembers in regions where random behavior is required andor where individual errors are likely. The addition of processing time constraints to a team theoretic problem modifies team operation. In particular, partially random behavior by team members can be optimal, either by a members choice, through the selection of an option to guess or by design, through selection of thresholds such that processing time exceeds a deadline, which in turn makes processing errors more likely. Further, the special case considered has demonstrated that a variety of relationships can exist between team performance and member workload. Because of this variability, a general guideline is suggested, whereby a first step toward understanding a particular structure might be to identify which of the possible relationships actually exists. The effects of switching, as seen in the special case, also suggest a principle of general interest. Given that changing tasks or procedures may require processing resources, and that the necessity to switch may be governed by another team member, the recognition of the potential for switching within a team member, the recognition of the potential for switching within a team structure may lead to a better understanding of team behavior.
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