The Intelligent Organisation: Realising the value of information, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Intelligent Organisation

Realising the value of information, 1st Edition

By John Beckford


218 pages | 76 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2015-10-02
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The Intelligent Organisation offers a radical model of organisation based on the integration of structure, individuals and information. In this game-changing book, leading consultant John Beckford proposes a different way of designing organisations in order to transform their performance and capitalise on the potential offered by contemporary information capability. This book demonstrates how an organisation designed backwards from its customers provides optimised autonomy for individuals and integrated, coherent information.

Drawing on ideas from management science, business information management, organisation theory and extensive professional practice, Beckford argues that organisations have not evolved to process and derive meaning from exponentially increasing availability of data, and that the use of data for optimum performance requires fundamental organisational changes, not incremental improvement. Beckford demonstrates how to effect these changes in real practice and the positive results these changes can yield, as well as the challenges in implementation and how to work around them.Beckford’s style is lively and direct, but his arguments are academically rigorous, striking a persuasive balance between accessibility and authority. The text is supported by case studies throughout and a dedicated website,, with support materials for lecturers.

The Intelligent Organisation will be of significance to Masters and Undergraduate students reading Business Studies, Information Systems, Business Information Systems, Computer Science, Business Management and Management Science.


‘This book goes beyond traditional thinking as often found in Operational Excellence and provides great insights to make organizations more viable. By adopting this fashion, organizations can engage the next level of business performance that we could call Viability Excellence’. - Joep Lauret, Senior Manager Performance Management at Wärtsilä

‘This book will become an inspirational and essential source for both teachers and students. The careful attention to theory, method and context is richly illustrated with useful real world case studies. Comprehensive in its scope and scale, and rigorously argued, it offers a provocative and masterful assessment of a wide range of issues confronting the modern organization as the relentless drive for technological supremacy marches on.’ - Dr Louise Cooke, Loughborough University, UK

‘With thirty years of practical systems thinking science put into one essential toolkit, The Intelligent Organization must have over £50k worth of consulting in one handy manual.’ - James Robbins, CIO Northumbrian Water, UK

‘Provides great insight on how we can get far more value out of the information we have around us.’ - Jonathan Randall, Rolls-Royce plc, UK

‘This book challenges current beliefs and organizational thinking. The aim is to make profits more sustainable. Beckford has a simple and direct style, presenting an honest and open-minded approach to tackling head-on some of the experiences and misconceptions of how organizations work (or not!).’ - Dr W Moore MRSC CChem, Managing Director of drbm Consultancy Limited

Table of Contents

1. The Information Challenge 2. The Value of Information 3. Generating Value 4. Generating Value: Cases 5. Enabling Value 6. Enabling Value: Cases 7. Managing Autonomy 8. Managing Autonomy: Cases 9. The Information Factory 10. The Information Factory: Cases 11. Managing Performance 12. Managing Performance: Cases 13. The Intelligent Organization and Public Services 14. Dissolving the Challenge: Diagnosis, Prognosis, Treatment

About the Author

John Beckford is an independent consultant and Visiting Professor in the Department of Science, Technology, Engineering and Public Policy at University College London and in the Centre for Information Management at Loughborough University, UK

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Information Management
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Knowledge Capital
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Organizational Development