Three physicists from the University of Vienna examines the efficiency of committees in making a decision in terms of the number of people that makes up the committee.
To understand why, Thurner and fellow physicists Peter Klimek and Rudolf Hanel turned to the British historian C Northcote Parkinson, who studied how the British Navy was once administered. Parkinson, who died in 1993, discovered a strong correlation between a committee’s ability to make a good decision, and its size. In particular, Parkinson found that committees with more than about 20 members are much more ineffectual at making decisions than smaller groups — something he dubbed the “coefficient of inefficiency”.
You can read the preprint of the paper from a link given in that article. It is a clever way to quantify and model this problem. Now if only people who form such committees would pay attention to it.