Requisiteagility – Requisite Agility UnSymposium, 9-10 Feb 2019, New York City

Well, I am bemused and mystified how I managed not to see this until a week before the event! And I’m intrigued. The combination of Requisite Organisation, Viable Systems Model, and Agile is a powerful one. And of course each of them is very different, though each has been proven to be valuable in practice, when done well.

A few thoughts:

  • I have wondered for a while about when and how agile would be absorbed into the deeper theoretical tradition of management and systems thinking (in a meaningful/useful way, I don’t mean McKinsey or HBR), but it has largely remained focused on (a) practice and (b) competing brands and commercial offers to date.
  • This is an unconference (plus speakers), but ?every speaker is listed with their own branded ‘offer’, which might rather illustrate the problem.
  • I can’t help thinking that Viable Systems Model might have come in there later because someone said ‘oi! there’s a theory which focuses entirely on viability as requisite agility, you know’. I would have said that the use of ‘requisite’ and the entire thrust of the theories are ‘orthogonal’ between RO and VSM – though I explicitly merge them (or at least learning from Elliot Jacques through various routes), and Luc Hoebeke has done it theoretically as well (shame he’s not speaking!)
  • These kind of blendings can be the most sterile, or the most fertile, depending on how well the incommensurability of different traditions can be addressed!



In the about page, it says:

Provenance of RA

The idea of Requisite Agility (RA) was born in 2009, when Amit Arora was in Russia for a software development project based on the Requisite Organization (RO) theory. This was the first time he was introduced to RO and its concepts, denoting the start of a journey of contextualizing the Requisite Organization concepts with the concepts of agile/agility.
From 2014 onwards, in collaboration with Steve Clement and many other contributors (see the list below), the idea of Requisite Agility has gradually evolved into a coherent conceptual foundation that recasts many RO concepts into today’s complex and agile context, provides a well-founded scaffolding to design and implement business agility, and is agnostic to any best practice method or framework.

As of the end of 2018, the RA concept is ready for a major leap: collaborative elaboration of the theory, tenets and terminology. To this end, an UnSymposium will be held in early 2019 to get together the harbingers, proponents and future practitioners of RA. The results of the RA community will be released as creative commons open content for anyone to apply.



Main page, source: Requisiteagility – Requisite Agility UnSymposium


About RA

Requisite Agility™ (RA) refers to  the organization design principles, patterns and practices that enable the organization to effectively adapt, responsively or preemptively, to changes in its environment. It provides a constructive scaffolding that helps the organization sense these changes, make sense of them, and act accordingly, while learning from the experience.

RA is agnostic to any specific agile methodology, best practice, or framework. Drawing on the systems and complexity theories, it entails theoretically informed and organization-specific diagnosis, analysis, design and implementation of organizational structures, processes and practices that are adaptive in their context.

RA operationalizes key Agile Properties

Driving Questions