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Models and metaphors: complexity theory and through-life management in the built environment

Rooke, JA, Molloy, EM, Sinclair, M, Koskela, LJ, Siriwardena, ML, Kagioglou, M and Siemieniuch, C 2008, 'Models and metaphors: complexity theory and through-life management in the built environment ' , International Journal of Architectural, Engineering and Design Management, 4 (1) , pp. 47-57.

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    Abstract

    Complexity thinking may have both modelling and metaphorical applications in the through-life management of the built environment. These two distinct approaches are examined and compared. In the first instance, some of the sources of complexity in the design, construction and maintenance of the built environment are identified. The metaphorical use of complexity in management thinking and its application in the built environment are briefly examined. This is followed by an exploration of modelling techniques relevant to built environment concerns. Non-linear and complex mathematical techniques such as fuzzy logic, cellular automata and attractors, may be applicable to their analysis. Existing software tools are identified and examples of successful built environment applications of complexity modelling are given. Some issues that arise include the definition of phenomena in a mathematically usable way, the functionality of available software and the possibility of going beyond representational modelling. Further questions arising from the application of complexity thinking are discussed, including the possibilities for confusion that arise from the use of metaphor. The metaphor of a 'commentary machine' is suggested as a possible way forward and it is suggested that an appropriate linguistic analysis can in certain situations reduce perceived complexity.

    Item Type: Article
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Complexity; metaphor; modelling; production theory; unique adequacy
    Themes: Subjects / Themes > T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
    Built and Human Environment
    Schools: Colleges and Schools > College of Science & Technology > School of the Built Environment
    Colleges and Schools > College of Science & Technology > School of the Built Environment > Centre for Disaster Resilience
    Colleges and Schools > College of Science & Technology > School of the Built Environment > Salford Centre for Research & Innovation (SCRI)
    Journal or Publication Title: International Journal of Architectural, Engineering and Design Management
    Publisher: Earthscan
    Refereed: Yes
    ISSN: 1745-2007
    Depositing User: Users 29196 not found.
    Date Deposited: 26 Nov 2009 14:27
    Last Modified: 30 Jul 2014 13:28
    URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/2566

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