To be more efficient, promote people randomly

The Ig Nobel Prizes honor achievements that first make people laugh, and then make them think. The 2010 Ig Nobel Prize in Management was awarded yesterday to Alessandro Pluchino, Andrea Rapisarda, and Cesare Garofalo of the University of Catania, Italy, for demonstrating mathematically that organizations would become more efficient if they promoted people at random.  I have long suspected this was how some companies did it, I’m glad there is now computational proof that this is the way to go.

The research was originally published as The Peter Principle Revisited: A Computational Study in Physica A, vol. 389, no. 3, February 2010, pp. 467-72.