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The current framework for sociotechnical systems (STS) can be traced to the groundbreaking actionscience studies carried out by Fred Emery and Eric Trist. Their revolutionary experiments first took place in Great Britain in 1949 in a South Yorkshire coal mine. Coal being then the primary source of energy, organizational researchers continually monitored and evaluated such factors as operational efficiency, work group productivity, morale, and job satisfaction. At the South Yorkshire mine, Trist observed the emergence of a novel work group phenomenon consisting of highly collaborative and self-regulating work teams. Although the current Ortgeist (spirit of the place) had become progressively more mechanized, conversely these autonomous work groups demonstrated cooperation and commitment, outperforming traditionally managed bureaucratic operations set forth as one-man–one-task roles. Thanks to the studies ...

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