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Organizations and organisms -- organizations are often compared to organisms. Though this analogy can provide some insights, it can also be very misleading. Here are Carroll and Hannan's (2000, p 40) eight differences:
1. The greater variety of types of events that define organizational births and deaths.
2. The potential immortality of formal organizations.
3. The lack of clear parentage for organizations.
4. The absence of genetic transmission of information in the organizational world.
5. The multilayered, partly decomposable structure of formal organizations.
6. The great heterogeneity found within organizational populations.
7. The ability of organizations to transform themselves and change populations.
8. The potentially high levels of endogeneity in the environments of organizations (that is, an organization's capacity to shape its own environments)

It is important to keep these differences in mind as one studies the works of organizational ecologists, with their populations of organizations, evolutionary economics, and organization evolution -- which gain resonance from the analogy to biological evolution, the evolution of organisms vs. organizations.