ESMT researchers Maximilian Köhler, PhD, and strategy professor Henry Sauermann see the role of AI not as a “worker” performing specific scientific tasks, but as a “manager” of employees. Algorithmic management (AM) represents a significant shift in the way scientific research is conducted and has the potential to enable this research to operate on a larger scale and more efficiently.

The study, published in the journal Research Policy, shows that AI can not only replicate but also potentially surpass human managers by using its instantaneous, comprehensive and interactive capabilities.

Researchers analyzing algorithmic management in crowdsourcing and citizen science discuss examples of how AI effectively performs five important management functions: task distribution and assignment, direction, coordination, motivation, and learning support.

These patterns point to changing sources of competitive advantage in scientific research and may have important implications for research funders, digital research platforms, and large research organizations such as universities or corporate research laboratories.

Although AI may take over important management functions, this does not mean that project managers or human managers will become obsolete. If AI can take over some of the more algorithmic and mechanical management functions, human leaders will be able to focus their attention on more strategic and social issues.

Source: Ferra

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