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Wiktionary reads:

concinnity: The harmonious reinforcement of the various parts of a work of art.

Call it corporate social responsibility at work if you wish, but we simply think that under Howard Shultz's inspired and inspiring leadership Starbucks is just a damned well-managed company that has achieved the concinnity that distinguishes companies operating under the nontraditional FoE business model. (Google Book's source)

Since I don't have OED access, can anybody say from where this metaphorical usage of the noun 'concinnity' comes? And what is, precisely, its meaning in non-literary contexts?

P.S. Considering the relevance of this word in an economics context, I tagged this question by 'economics' tag.

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Hmm. Is it used metaphorically in that quote? ODO doesn't mention anything about works of art in its primary definition. If anything, applying the word to mean "studied elegance" (and therefore artistry) is metaphorical, I think. –  Andrew Leach Aug 17 '12 at 13:47
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I don't think it's necessarily metaphorical, since the word's meaning includes the more broad definition: "any harmonious adaptation of parts". Merriam-Webster has this nice tidbit about the word, as well. I think it's just the author's apt word choice rather than a particular usage specific to economics. –  Zairja Aug 17 '12 at 14:46
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@XavierVidalHernández Could you please provide some sources that connote this economic meaning (as opposed to the definition itself: harmoniously arranged parts)? I'm not an economist so I'd be curious what this looks like exactly. –  Zairja Aug 17 '12 at 15:18
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@XavierVidalHernández I'm not sure where you're getting the combative attitude from (though I do see it in many of your comments/posts). Why should I have any reason to doubt a claim solely because it's yours? I'm genuinely curious due to my own lack of knowledge. I've searched some prominent publications (WSJ / Economist) and JSTOR, but found nothing. Again, I lack the resources to fully investigate the usage of this term in the context you're asserting. A search in Google Books (your source) shows the term is used by its dictionary definition, nothing more. Just a choice word. :) –  Zairja Aug 17 '12 at 15:46
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FWIW, I totally agree with Zairja: there is nothing about this usage that is specific to economics. –  Marthaª Aug 17 '12 at 16:45
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2 Answers

The author is using concinnity in a way that other writers might use synergy.

Macmillan's definition of synergy is particularly apt in this context:

synergy, n.: the extra energy or effectiveness that people or businesses create when they combine their efforts

To my mind, the concepts mirror each other; synergy is normally thought of as the whole being greater than the sum of the parts, while concinnity is the harmonious melding of parts into an elegant whole.

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At least three dictionaries -- Merriam, the Free Dictionary, and Dictionary.com -- agree with this definition of "concinnity" :

harmony or elegance of design in adaptation of parts to a whole or to each other 

All dictionaries also noted that this word is especially used to talk about literary style, speeches (rhetoric), and music

And so, it will be applied in the context of economics with the same meaning of:

any harmonious adaptation of parts 

In fact, the OP's own source (Wiktionary) already had this to say about usage:

Usage notes: Although the concept of concinnity can apply to any object or situation, it is most commonly used in the discussion of music.

In addition, the same source, Wiktionary, itself already provided the answer to the question of etymology:

Coined 1531 by Sir Thomas Elyot in his treatise, The Boke Named the Governor, from Latin concinnitas ("skillfully put together").

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