Organization Self-Design of Distributed Production Systems

Toru Ishida, Makoto Yokoo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

76 Citations (Scopus)


Organization has emerged as a key concept for structuring the activities of collections of problem-solvers. Organization self-design (OSD) has been studied as an adaptive approach to long term, strategic work-allocation and load-balancing. In this paper, we introduce two new reorganization primitives, composition and decomposition. They change the population of agents and the distribution of knowledge in an organization. To create these primitives, we formalize organizational knowledge, which represents knowledge of potential and necessary interactions among agents in an organization. We develop computational OSD techniques for agents with architectures based on production systems to take advantage of the well-understood body of theory and practice. We first extend parallel production systems, where global control exists, into distributed production systems, where problems are solved by a society of agents using distributed control. We then introduce OSD into distributed production systems to provide adaptive work allocation. Simulation results demonstrate the effectiveness of our approach in adapting to changing environmental demands. In addition to introducing advanced techniques for flexible OSD, our approach impacts production system design, and improves our ability to build production systems that can adapt to changing real-time constraints.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)123-134
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1992 Apr
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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