Methodological individualism

Methodological individualism was developed in economics and, more specifically, in the economic theory of political decision-making (Van den Doel, 1993). The simple view that a group of people working together form one independent entity is replaced by the view of the group as a collection of individuals (or sub-groups) producing something for another collection of individuals (or sub-groups), who may or may not be working together.

The idea that the group, which produces something together, has its own responsibility for taking (paternalistic) decisions for others is incompatible with methodological individualism. Individuals and sub-groups of individuals working together have special authority that enables them to take decisions for others and renders them accountable .

Methodological individualism is becoming increasingly relevant to team design. The growing complexity of design commissions has made it impossible for professional designers to decide alone what is relevant to achieving the (individual) goals of all the parties involved.

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