An essential task of groups is to provide efficient solutions for the complex problems they face. Indeed, considerable efforts have been devoted to the question of collective decision-making related to problems involving a single dominant feature. Here we introduce a quantitative formalism for finding the optimal distribution of the group membersâ€™ competences in the more typical case when the underlying problem is complex, i.e., multidimensional. Thus, we consider teams that are aiming at obtaining the best possible answer to a problem having a number of independent sub-problems. Our approach is based on a generic scheme for the process of evaluating the proposed solutions (i.e., negotiation). We demonstrate that the best performing groups have at least one specialist for each sub-problem â€” but a far less intuitive result is that finding the optimal solution by the interacting group members requires that the specialists also have some insight into the sub-problems beyond their unique field(s). We present empirical results obtained by using a large-scale database of citations being in good agreement with the above theory. The framework we have developed can easily be adapted to a variety of realistic situations since taking into account the weights of the sub-problems, the opinions or the relations of the group is straightforward. Consequently, our method can be used in several contexts, especially when the optimal composition of a group of decision-makers is designed.
|Journal||Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications|
|Publication status||Published - 2017|
- Collective behavior
- Interdisciplinary research
- Optimal decisions