The Emergence of Complex Intelligent Systems - the Future of Management, Nicer


Artificial intelligence (AI) plays an increasingly important role in our society and in our lives. Critical Infrastructures in society, such as healthcare, transportation, energy, finance, are becoming dependent on AI. So far, AI solutions are often stand-alone or address a limited functionality in a larger context of complex systems.

The way we approach complex intelligent systems will have huge impact on our ability to benefit from AI as well as avoiding negative consequences. AI is more than technology and relies on the interaction between individuals, systems and organisations. A new understanding of management in the face of the emergence of complex intelligent systems is required. How can organisations be managed to responsibly contribute to, and benefit from, the emergence of artificial intelligence and complex intelligent systems? This is the overall question we in the research group Nicer address at Linköpings University. 

The aim is to contribute to the management of future organisations. The research provides insights into how safety-criticality and system’s generativity can be combined, how decisions can be made concerning complex intelligent systems, how organisations can be designed, how they can work with others in ecosystems and how they can harness complexity. The research combines technology and management perspectives while considering social aspects. The project’s ecosystem includes management researchers, AI researchers and practitioners. Future scenarios are studied, for example demonstration arenas for technology research and industrial applications. 


Nicer performs relevant research on the management of complex intelligent systems leading to theoretical and practical management insights enabling purposeful use of AI in complex systems and infrastructures.


Identify, execute and disseminate relevant research on future management contexts based on rigorous methods.

Projects and funding

Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation (MMW)/ WASP-HS
Faculty funding

Research themes/Research case contexts

Our research is performed in a wide range of different contexts, including system-building industries and the public sector. Studies are ongoing focusing on cloud computing and cloud engineering, automotive, personalized medicine, and the aviation industry. Common for these are that they represent challenges related to the emergence of complex and increasingly intelligent systems when AI is becoming an integrated part. All these also play a role in infrastructures that fulfill a critical role in society. Our research aims at development of new theory for management and innovation in complex products and systems when AI enters the landscape.Current subproject and research themes include:

- Management of safety-criticality and generativity in complex systems innovation
- Management when complexity is beyond human cognition
- Management decision-making with human authority and system autonomy
- Managing the continuum of tensions in complex systems development
- Management in the context of combined model-based and data-driven approaches
- Purpose-driven management in the context of emerging complex intelligent systems
- Management in ecosystems for complex intelligent systems


The NICER group includes seven researchers performing research on different themes and including four PhD projects. An international advisory board with renowned scholar and experienced industrial representatives supports the research group in regular meetings with comments, ideas and suggestions.

News connected to activities in the project

  • AI for Humanity and Society 2021
  • International Experts Discuss Sweden’s Future Artificial Intelligence Policy
  • Multidisciplinary Approach to Future AI Policies at International WASP-HS Conference 2021



Blog and articles