Open System Definition of Organization
Organizations are not stable and easily defined, but are shaped and are
porous to their environments. Environments "shape, support, and infiltrate
organizations. In this view, participants do not necessarily hold common
goals or even routinely seek the survival of the organization. Participants
in effect have transitory coalitions (Scott p. 25)
Using a open system perspective, Scott defines organizations as "systems
of independent activities linking shifting coalitions of participants; the
systems are embedded in -- dependent on continuing exchanges with and constituted
by -- the environments in which they operate" (p. 25).
Katz and Kahn add that:
"All social systems, including organizations, consist of the patterned
activities of a number of individuals. Moreover, thesee patterned activities
are complementary or independent with respect to some common output or outcome:
they are repeated, relatively enduring, and bounded in space and time."