Systems and Systems Thinking|
Characteristics of Systems
- A system's parts must all be present for the system to carry out its purpose optimally.
- A system's parts must be arranged in a specific way for the system to carry out its purpose.
- Systems have specific purposes within larger systems.
- Systems maintain their stability through fluctuations and adjustments.
- Systems have feedback.
The structure of systems is defined by the interrelationships of the parts (subsystems), not the parts themselves.
To define a system you look at
- What happens
- Patterns: trends or changes in events over time
- What happens over time
- Measure or track events
- Learn how to anticipate the events
- Structure: what is causing the patterns
- Why did the events happen
- Look at the causality
- Creative problem solving
- How to shape the events in the future
Principles of Systems Thinking
- Think in the big picture
- Balance short term and long term perspectives
- Recognize the dynamic, complex and interdependent nature of systems
- Take into account both measurable and nonmeasurable factors
- When we study systems, we influence the systems
- Unintended consequences
- Values and beliefs