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General System Theory: Foundations

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... When L. von Bertalanffy first introduced the General System Theory (GST) [107] in 1968, he intended to provide abstractions and conceptual models which enable interdisciplinary collaboration, helping to approach complex and cross-domain problems. He realized that several research disciplines were facing similar challenges dealing with complex and nonlinear systems. ...
... GST is related to cybernetics. As stated by L. von Bertalanffy, "cybernetics, e.g., proved its impact not only in technology but in basic sciences, yielding models for concrete phenomena and bringing teleological phenomena -previously tabooed -into the range of scientifically legitimate problems" [107], p. 23. But GST chose a different approach. ...
... Some system properties (i.e. behaviors) cannot be deduced from the properties of their components alone [107]. This means that novel properties can emerge due to complexity. ...
Chapter
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Systemic and holistic approaches provide a new way of thinking about, understanding and designing systems. In this chapter we aim to highlight the most significant and influential work in this trend, and in particular the achievements of cybernetics, systemics and coordination modeling. Starting with cybernetics, related topics like cybernetic orders, self-organization, autopoiesis and conversation theory are explained. Systemics, and especially general system theory, provide a general language and terminology to express and model systems independent of any research domain. Together with integral and system thinking, this leads to a paradigm shift in understanding and modeling complex and non-linear systems. Concretely, we introduce the meta model of Schwarz which was the starting point of our own generic system model URANOS. Finally, the coordination theories and models which had a great impact on our research on human-centered design are outlined.
... A common approach is mapping / modelling system components and their causal interrelations in terms of influence processes, flows, feedback, and emergent properties. Rich picture (Checkland & Scholes 1999;Checkland & Winter 2006;Checkland, 1981;Checkland and Holwell, 1998), Cognitive mapping (Eden 1988;Ackermann & Eden 2010;Eden & Ackermann 2001) Decision graph (Friend & Hickling 2012;Friend 2011;Friend and Hickling, 1987) Resource mapping (Kunc & Morecroft 2009; M. H. Kunc & Morecroft 2010) Stakeholder mapping by Stakeholders influence network and management web (Ackermann & Eden 2011) Assessing future configurations of the system (Rosenhead 2001;Rosenhead 1980) Role "hypergame" playing for analysing conflict and cooperation (Bryant, 1997;Howard 1998) Analysing decision alternatives (Phillips, 1987;Phillips & Phillips 1993) (Von Bertalanffy 1968;Forrester 1961) Cognition theory (Kelly 1995;Eden & Huff 2009;Von Foerster 2011;Mingers 1991;Huff 1990;Simon 1955;1976) Ackoff design approach (Ackoff 1979) Resource based theory (Barney 1991;Wernerfeldt 1984); System Dynamics and Systems theory (Forrester 1987;Von Bertalanffy 1968); Stakeholders theory (Mitchell 1997;Carroll, 1989;Donaldson and Preston, 1995;Freeman, 1984) Systems theory (Von Bertalanffy 1968) Game theory (Von Neumann & Morgenstern 1944;Brams 1994) Decision theory (Simon 1965), Requisite modelling (Phillips, 1982(Phillips, , 1984 Viable Systems Model Cybernetic principles for viable organization (Hilder 1995;Beer 1985;Beer 1986) resources and control Systems theory (Von Bertalanffy 1968;Von Foerster 1979) PSMs are inherently dialectic in relation to analysing causal interrelations. However, an important tension in systems theory is between a view of systems in terms of resource feedback structure and in terms of competing agents that adapt and change (Phelan 1999;Scholl 2001;Mingers & Brocklesby 1997). ...
... A common approach is mapping / modelling system components and their causal interrelations in terms of influence processes, flows, feedback, and emergent properties. Rich picture (Checkland & Scholes 1999;Checkland & Winter 2006;Checkland, 1981;Checkland and Holwell, 1998), Cognitive mapping (Eden 1988;Ackermann & Eden 2010;Eden & Ackermann 2001) Decision graph (Friend & Hickling 2012;Friend 2011;Friend and Hickling, 1987) Resource mapping (Kunc & Morecroft 2009; M. H. Kunc & Morecroft 2010) Stakeholder mapping by Stakeholders influence network and management web (Ackermann & Eden 2011) Assessing future configurations of the system (Rosenhead 2001;Rosenhead 1980) Role "hypergame" playing for analysing conflict and cooperation (Bryant, 1997;Howard 1998) Analysing decision alternatives (Phillips, 1987;Phillips & Phillips 1993) (Von Bertalanffy 1968;Forrester 1961) Cognition theory (Kelly 1995;Eden & Huff 2009;Von Foerster 2011;Mingers 1991;Huff 1990;Simon 1955;1976) Ackoff design approach (Ackoff 1979) Resource based theory (Barney 1991;Wernerfeldt 1984); System Dynamics and Systems theory (Forrester 1987;Von Bertalanffy 1968); Stakeholders theory (Mitchell 1997;Carroll, 1989;Donaldson and Preston, 1995;Freeman, 1984) Systems theory (Von Bertalanffy 1968) Game theory (Von Neumann & Morgenstern 1944;Brams 1994) Decision theory (Simon 1965), Requisite modelling (Phillips, 1982(Phillips, , 1984 Viable Systems Model Cybernetic principles for viable organization (Hilder 1995;Beer 1985;Beer 1986) resources and control Systems theory (Von Bertalanffy 1968;Von Foerster 1979) PSMs are inherently dialectic in relation to analysing causal interrelations. However, an important tension in systems theory is between a view of systems in terms of resource feedback structure and in terms of competing agents that adapt and change (Phelan 1999;Scholl 2001;Mingers & Brocklesby 1997). ...
... A common approach is mapping / modelling system components and their causal interrelations in terms of influence processes, flows, feedback, and emergent properties. Rich picture (Checkland & Scholes 1999;Checkland & Winter 2006;Checkland, 1981;Checkland and Holwell, 1998), Cognitive mapping (Eden 1988;Ackermann & Eden 2010;Eden & Ackermann 2001) Decision graph (Friend & Hickling 2012;Friend 2011;Friend and Hickling, 1987) Resource mapping (Kunc & Morecroft 2009; M. H. Kunc & Morecroft 2010) Stakeholder mapping by Stakeholders influence network and management web (Ackermann & Eden 2011) Assessing future configurations of the system (Rosenhead 2001;Rosenhead 1980) Role "hypergame" playing for analysing conflict and cooperation (Bryant, 1997;Howard 1998) Analysing decision alternatives (Phillips, 1987;Phillips & Phillips 1993) (Von Bertalanffy 1968;Forrester 1961) Cognition theory (Kelly 1995;Eden & Huff 2009;Von Foerster 2011;Mingers 1991;Huff 1990;Simon 1955;1976) Ackoff design approach (Ackoff 1979) Resource based theory (Barney 1991;Wernerfeldt 1984); System Dynamics and Systems theory (Forrester 1987;Von Bertalanffy 1968); Stakeholders theory (Mitchell 1997;Carroll, 1989;Donaldson and Preston, 1995;Freeman, 1984) Systems theory (Von Bertalanffy 1968) Game theory (Von Neumann & Morgenstern 1944;Brams 1994) Decision theory (Simon 1965), Requisite modelling (Phillips, 1982(Phillips, , 1984 Viable Systems Model Cybernetic principles for viable organization (Hilder 1995;Beer 1985;Beer 1986) resources and control Systems theory (Von Bertalanffy 1968;Von Foerster 1979) PSMs are inherently dialectic in relation to analysing causal interrelations. However, an important tension in systems theory is between a view of systems in terms of resource feedback structure and in terms of competing agents that adapt and change (Phelan 1999;Scholl 2001;Mingers & Brocklesby 1997). ...
Article
Complex adaptive systems are systems where those managing the system, the agents, interact with other competing agents and key resources available to the system. The behaviour of the agents and the resources are constantly changing over time thus resulting in complex systems of evolving problem configurations. Managing such a system can be very challenging, particularly when attempting to manage rather than simplify complexity. One particular problem is the need to take a comprehensive perspective of the complex system in order to manage it effectively. Resource structure and agent behaviour are interdependent and both interconnected components need to be considered in order to support optimal decision making. Due to the lack of an appropriate technique in the literature to achieve a comprehensive qualitative appreciation of resource/agent complex adaptive system behaviour, this paper describes the development of a novel qualitative modelling tool, a Resource/Agent Map, that aims to map and analyse both resources and agents interactive behaviour. We show how this modelling tool can help achieve a holistic appreciation of the resource/agent perspectives and generate scenario alternatives to inform policy decision making in respect to system management and regulation. A pharmaceutical example is used to demonstrate the modelling tool.
... Despite its non-physical connotation, perception of transfer climate is a relevant predictor of the effectiveness of transfer (Rouiller & Goldstein, 1993). The interdependent interaction between objective elements and perceptual experience confirms Meyer's (1988) idea of the learning environment as an integrated system (Von Bertalanffy, 1956). ...
... In light of a psychosocial perspective, the transfer climate can be seen also as a 'perceptual medium' through which the daily-life environment affects behaviors and learning outcomes, given the influence of one's social relations (Kopelman et al., 1990). Coherently with Meyer's (1988) idea of the learning environment as an integrated system (Von Bertalanffy, 1956), it is possible to re-state here that perception (of the transfer climate), despite its nonphysical connotation, can be a relevant predictor of the effectiveness of transfer, and therefore should not be underestimated (Rouiller & Goldstein, 1993). ...
Thesis
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Literacy skills are a prerequisite for building human capital throughout lifetime: participate in the labor market and social activities, acquire skills and perform daily tasks. Low literacy proficiency accompanies vulnerability, predicting social exclusion and poverty. Adult literacy programs give a renewed opportunity to acquire basic skills throughout all phases of someone’s life. The analysis of two Dutch adult literacy programs in 2019 confirm that they increase social inclusion outcomes among participants. However, the broader impact of these types of programs is still inconclusive. This study investigates how participant’s perception of the learning environment affects the effectiveness of adult literacy programs aimed at increasing their social inclusion. Perception is explored as both observable and latent construct with different approaches. First, self-reported responses were cross validated using respondents’ background characteristics as proxy of their perception. Second, structural equation modeling was deployed to test the role of perception as latent construct. Disaggregation analysis and robustness tests confirmed the consistency of estimations. Perception significantly influence participants’ learning outcomes. Drawing from inter-disciplinary research of learning science, economics of human capital, cognitive science and educational psychology, results have contributed to the existing scarce literature on adult education and social inclusion. The findings highlight the relevance of considering psychosocial antecedents in the process of social inclusion to explain improvements of learning outcomes.
... In this literature, innovation is 'systemic' because in the present era most scholars are starting to put more effect in defining 'systemic innovation' procedure or process. It is useful to note that a system was classically characterized in the beginning of systems science as an sort out arrangement of part, distinguished from their condition and environment, giving more focus to emerging phenomena that cannot be credited to anyone section or part or sub-section in isolation (e.g., Angyal, 1941;Bertalanffy, 1956Bertalanffy, , 1968Hall and Fagen, 1956;Marchal, 1975;Bunge, 1977;Flood and Carson, 1993). These emergent phenomena are referred to whole properties of the system. ...
... Apart from society, there is additionally the planetary ecological system, for instance the framework of the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment (2002) in New Zealand, which suggested that all economics and social activity both exist in ecological context. Hence, the concept of systemic hierarchy is critical for this ecologically orientated understanding of innovation (e.g., Bertalanffy, 1956Bertalanffy, , 1968Giampietro, 1994;Wilby, 1994). As per the perspectives of the national and regional governance of innovation, which perceive only two system levels (economic innovation system and governance meta-systems) whereas perspective of sustainability-orientated on systemic innovation think on different levels. ...
Preprint
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The field of entrepreneurial studies has been expanding in the past few years, although critical gaps in entrepreneurial opportunity identification, systemic innovation, and entrepreneurial ecosystem still exist. The research proposed in this paper aims to explain how entrepreneurs identify and create opportunities at the early stages of innovation process by using a systemic innovation approach. The researcher will utilize the concept of the entrepreneurial ecosystem to develop a model suitable for all industries and sectors for systemic innovation that provides a better picture for the systemic innovation procedure. The findings of this research will benefit emerging Estonian entrepreneurs and provide cross-sector innovation framework that can be utilized by other countries.
... Un des problèmes principaux que présentent les méthodes d'optimisation est l'équifinalité, défini pour la première fois par (Von Bertalanffy (1956) Ainsi, il peutêtre nécessaire de finalement proposer l'ensemble des solutionsà une expertise manuelle. ...
Thesis
Le projet informatique (SiSU) de l’Unité Mixe de Recherche CNRS Science pour l’Environnement conçoit des méthodes d’aide à la décision pour aider à une meilleure gestion des systèmes complexes environnementaux. Ces travaux de thèse s’inscrivent dans ce contexte. Ils ont pour objectif d'étudier les apports de plusieurs types de méthodes informatiques afin d'améliorer nos connaissances sur les systèmes complexes et ainsi de fournir une aide à leur gestion en situation de fortes incertitudes. En effet, les systèmes complexes environnementaux ne peuvent pas toujours être connus et modélisés avec précision. C’est par exemple le cas en biologie halieutique où des méthodes de gestion doivent être proposées malgré un manque de connaissances sur le système observé, dans notre cas d’étude : la pêche côtière Corse. Nos premiers travaux ont porté sur la calibration de modèles, c’est-à-dire le recherche de valeurs de paramètres permettant à nos modèles de représenter au mieux la dynamique du système. Ils ont montré les limites des approches habituelles et la nécessité d’utiliser des approches probabilistes basées sur de grandes quantités de simulations. Elles apportent une aide précieuse quant à l’acquisition de connaissances, notamment en délimitant des ensembles de solutions. Ceux-ci peuvent alors être utilisés dans des méthodes d’optimisation robuste, voire d’optimisation robuste ajustable. Ces approches permettent non seulement de prendre en compte les incertitudes, mais également de quantifier la réduction d’incertitude que de nouvelles années de données pourront apporter, afin de proposer des stratégies de plus en plus précises à long terme. L’optimisation est donc utilisable efficacement à l’échelle des décideurs. Cependant, la petite pêche côtière Corse, est un système sur lequel agissent un grand nombre d’acteurs avec des comportements différents et difficilement prévisibles et contrôlables. L’optimisation ne semble pas adaptée à l’étude de cette échelle de par la quantité de paramètres et le nombre infini de transitions stochastiques engendrées. Pour cela, des méthodes basées sur l’apprentissage profond par renforcement ont été proposées. Ces approches nous ont permis dans un premier temps de proposer un modèle gérant à la fois décideurs et pêcheurs, les uns cherchant à réduire l’impact écologique, les autres à maximiser leurs gains. À partir de cela, nous avons pu montrer que de faibles connaissances suffisent pour la maximisation des gains des pêcheurs. De plus, cette approche, couplée à de l’optimisation, a permis d’obtenir des décisions d’instauration de quotas efficaces. Enfin, ce système nous a permis d’étudier l’impact de certains comportements individuels de maximisation des gains au détriment du respect des recommandations des décideurs. Il est alors apparu que des politiques de gestion efficaces et adaptées peuvent permettre de pallier l’impact écologique d’une quantité non négligeable de ces comportements. Ainsi, nous avons pu contribuer de manière théorique à élargir les domaines d’application de la théorie de la modélisation et de la simulation, proposer un ensemble d’outils d’optimisation et d’apprentissage automatique à la gestion de systèmes dynamiques partiellement observables, mais également applicative pour la problématique de la gestion de la pêche en Corse.
... The distinction and differentiation of these various features is, therefore, a matter of central concern for the understanding of the historical, cultural and archaeological development of a given territory. It should be emphasised, moreover, the significant ambiguity/equifinality (Skyttner 2005;von Bertalanffy 1956) that some of these features present in the final state of their morphogenetic paths. ...
... However, for this progress to occur, two issues need to be addressed: first, is the grounding of research in 'general systems theory' (Katina, 2016;Rousseau, 2018;von Bertalanffy, 1956;Whitney et al., 2015) where much of needed conceptualisation rests and can serve as a basis upon which the field can be built. In essence, a criticism of current approaches to blockchain is the absence of a rigorously developed, literature-based and accepted theoretical basis for blockchain and the related technologies, including payment schemes such as bitcoins. ...
Article
Blockchain is probably best known as a technology that underpins bitcoin cryptocurrency, taking records (e.g., confirmed financial transactions) and placing them into 'blocks', which are linked to prior blocks - forming a chronological 'chain' of blocks. However, bitcoin blockchain is only one instantiation of blockchain technology and there exist a few qualitative analyses addressing instantiations of blockchain technology. The aim of this study was two-fold: 1) to understand the difference between bitcoin and blockchain; 2) to delineate the need (and role) of governance in blockchain technology. First, fundamental relationships (and differences) between bitcoin and blockchain are presented. Second, drawing on societal blockchain technology concerns, a key element (i.e., governance) and its role in shaping blockchain technology is suggested. This research concludes with possible areas of research (and research questions) that can enable realisation of blockchain governance along the areas philosophical, theoretical, axiological, methodological, axiomatic, method and application dimensions.
... A system has been defined as the totality of elements in interaction with each other (Bertalanffy 1956), the totality of objects together with their mutual interactions (Hall and Fagen 1956), unity consisting in mutually interacting parts (Ackoff 1960) and a recognizably delimited aggregate of dynamic elements that are in some way interconnected and interdependent and that continue to operate together according to certain laws and in such a way as to produce some characteristic total effect (Boguslaw 1965). These definitions in essence agree that a system is a set of units or elements that are actively interrelated and that operate in some sense as a bounded unit. ...
Article
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The address-based population registry system is a vital part of public administration system in Turkey and its services are carried out mainly by a special organization founded with this purpose under the direction of ministry of interior. Its mission is mainly to register residents of Turkey from birth to death and update their data whenever a change occurs. The person identification information is needed by other public systems such as judicial system, electoral system, tax system, and the military service. It also interacts with other social systems such as education system and health care system. The stakeholders of the system differ within a wide range from local administrations to government institutions and private organizations. This paper presents this system and its elements and sheds light to its probable improvement areas.
... However, for this progress to occur, two issues need to be addressed: first, is the grounding of research in 'general systems theory' (Katina, 2016;Rousseau, 2018;von Bertalanffy, 1956;Whitney et al., 2015) where much of needed conceptualisation rests and can serve as a basis upon which the field can be built. In essence, a criticism of current approaches to blockchain is the absence of a rigorously developed, literature-based and accepted theoretical basis for blockchain and the related technologies, including payment schemes such as bitcoins. ...
Article
Blockchain is probably best known as a technology that underpins bitcoin cryptocurrency, taking records (e.g., confirmed financial transactions) and placing them into ‘blocks’, which are linked to prior blocks – forming a chronological ‘chain’ of blocks. However, bitcoin blockchain is only one instantiation of blockchain technology and there exist a few qualitative analyses addressing instantiations of blockchain technology. The aim of this study was two-fold: 1) to understand the difference between bitcoin and blockchain; 2) to delineate the need (and role) of governance in blockchain technology. First, fundamental relationships (and differences) between bitcoin and blockchain are presented. Second, drawing on societal blockchain technology concerns, a key element (i.e., governance) and its role in shaping blockchain technology is suggested. This research concludes with possible areas of research (and research questions) that can enable realisation of blockchain governance along the areas philosophical, theoretical, axiological, methodological, axiomatic, method and application dimensions.
... The Systems Approach Framework (SAF), developed during the EU-funded project SPICOSA (Science and Policy Integration for Coastal Systems Assessment, EU 6th, Nr. 036992), further refined this structured approach to ICM. The Systems Approach, founded on Systems Theory (Von Bertalanffy 1968), acknowledges that systems are highly complex, often behaving in nonlinear fashion and cannot be understood in their entirety by breaking them down into compartments and examining each individually. A systems perspective requires a holistic view and focuses on the relationships between components. ...
Article
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Sustainable management of coastal systems can only be achieved with an effective science-policy interface that integrates the three pillars of sustainable development: environmental protection, social progress and economic growth. The Systems Approach Framework (SAF) provides a structure to guide such a process by embracing the challenge of assessing complex systems for scenario simulations to support potential policy decisions. Based on applications of the SAF in six Baltic Sea case studies within the BONUS BaltCoast project, the SAF was revisited and further developed. Two additional steps were introduced partly to enhance implementation and decision validation and partly to facilitate the reiterative process with the addition of monitoring and evaluation. The SAF now includes six steps (Issue Identification, System Design, System Formulation, System Assessment, Implementation, Monitoring and Evaluation). A list of actions for each step clearly defines what needs to be done before progressing to the next SAF step. Activities within each step were improved to better integrate governance - citizen collaboration and improve the science-policy interface. Three auxiliary tools, developed in the BONUS BaltCoast project to support particular actions, were integrated in the different steps to facilitate application of the SAF by practitioners and scientists alike. The added focus on the stakeholder participation resulted in further actions being listed in the new steps to maintain stakeholder engagement and counteract stakeholder fatigue. The revised SAF is presented and discussed together with lessons learned from the different applications in five Baltic Sea study sites.
... In this paper, we follow the standard state-space representation in system theory [17]. The state-space model is the central topic in system theory. ...
Article
The working of recurrent neural networks has not been well understood to date. The construction of such network models hence largely relies on heuristics and intuition. This paper formalizes the notion of “memory length” for recurrent networks and consequently discovers a generic family of recurrent networks having maximal memory lengths. Stacking such networks into multiple layers is shown to result in powerful models including the Gated Convolutional Networks. We show that the structure of such networks potentially enables a more principled design approach in practice and entails no gradient vanishing or exploding during back-propagation. We also present a new example in this family, termed AARU. Experimentally we demonstrate that the performance of this network family, particularly AARU, is superior to the LSTM and GRU networks.
... The theories under the framework of Systems Thinking have their roots in the 1950s in numerous, seemingly different, disciplines such as biology (Von Bertalanffy, 1956), sociology (Giddens 1985;Luhmann, 1984), economics (Allen 2001; Boulding 1970), ecology (Gunderson and Holling 2002), political science (Kickert, 1991;Vickers 1983;Kemp et al., 2007;Rotmans et al., 2001), and business organization (Beer 1966;Senge 1990). ...
Article
Purpose This paper aims to introduce a new framework that helps to get an overview of contextual factors that influence the ability of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to survive the economic crisis in a business cluster, as parts of a system. Design/methodology/approach The spatial autologistic model and the logit regression tree (RT) were applied to SME manufacturing companies localized in the business clusters of the Italian Marche region to explain interconnection among the actors of the network and their heterogeneous behavior with the environment. Findings The main findings of the application confirm that contextual influences are decisive in the definition of firm’s survival, explained through the presence of spatial dependence in bankruptcy analysis, validating the transmission effects of corporate bankruptcy within the business clusters in the Marche region. Originality/value The estimation of the logistic RT allowed to identify sub-systems, homogeneous with respect to crucial context variables, with different firms’ behaviors in terms of probability to survive in the system and relation to their environment. Therefore, a systemic approach is required to provide a better understanding of such kind of phenomena.
... Sie sollen daher ausgewählt und überblickartig zusammengefasst werden. Die Kybernetik 1. Ordnung, übersetzt auf lebende Systeme (von Bertalanffy 1956(von Bertalanffy , 1962, versteht Menschen als offene und sich im Austausch (Interaktion) mit der Umwelt befindende dynamische soziale Systeme. Soziale Systeme basieren auf zwischenmenschlicher Kommunikation und reziproken Interaktionen (Beavin et al. 1969 The three-level model of family and systems diagnostics. ...
Article
Background Family and systems diagnostics are a fundamental component within society and higher education. Theories and methods which are easy to communicate increasingly are becoming more important. Objective This article presents a rationale for future research and intervention heuristics in the field of family and systems diagnostics based on the three-level model, which encompasses four perspectives on social interactions. Selected questionnaires with good psychometric soundness are presented, as well as a selection of research studies for each of these questionnaires, specifically addressing German-speaking populations. Material and methods The basic concept is presented with the three-level model published by Cierpka (2008a), graphically depicted by the author. The selection of the family and systems diagnostics questionnaires is based on a priori defined criteria, followed by an electronic search (PsycINFO, PSYNDEX, Google Scholar). Results Considering Germany-speaking populations, three of the four perspectives on social interactions provided by the three-level model are well supported by psychometrically sound questionnaires, including retest reliability and norms, though from some years ago. Most questionnaires refer to dyadic relationships and families as a whole. Questionnaires for the assessment of individual experiences in social systems or triadic relationships are less often available. Most questionnaires perform correlation analyses within the social dyad while triadic interactions are not reported. Conclusion German family and systems diagnostics have access to a great variety of well-validated questionnaires to assess social interactions on different levels of complexity. Future research has to consider all perspectives of social interactions, especially taking triadic interactions and the role of adult social interactions for health prevention and clinical treatment processes into account.
... The method of negotiation preparation proposed in this article is related to the general systems theory. This was described by Bertalanffy (1955) and further developed for technical products by Ropohl (1978). The author applied and modified the system theory of technology and the general system theory to the system theory of sales engineering (Schneider-Störmann, 2015b). ...
Article
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Today, buying and selling in B2B needs improved methods. A classical approach is to analyse the so called "Buying Centre". This article shows an improved, more comprehensive approach to be better prepared ahead of a negotiation. This is seen from the sales engineer's viewpoint and should be a helpful tool for anyone involved in sales. In the first paragraph, this article briefly describes the sales/buying process, showing what is happening in the supplying company. Part of the preparation of a sales person is to identify the player in the buying centre. The meaning of these players is described in Section 2. Section 3 of this article focuses on the lack of information if only the buying centre is analysed and gives examples. The 4 th section shows the method of improved analysis of negotiation preparation.
... In this direction one can refer to the works of Leibniz. The works of Bertalanffy and his famous book " General system theory "[2]is the main reference on the foundations of this topic. In mathematical language a system Y on a non-empty set X is a set of relations on X such that each element of X is in the domain of at least one member of Y. ...
Article
In this paper, a general case of information systems containing quantum information systems is considered. By presenting an algorithmic method, a new kind of information topology is defined and considered. Continuous maps between two information topological spaces are studied. Moreover, open and compact information systems are taken into consideration. It is also proved that a finite product of compact information systems is a compact information system. Following that, two methods for constructing new open covers for a class of compact information systems are presented, and information topological entropy for continuous self-maps of an information topological space is considered. We show that information topological entropy is an invariant object under a conjugate relation. Finally, a mathematical model for knowledge spread is introduced.
... operator instructions), facilities, materials and naturally occurring entities";  Software products and services as described in ISO/IEC 12207;  Software-intensive systems as described in IEEE standard 1471:2000: "any system where software contributes essential influences to the design, construction, deployment, and evolution of the system as a whole" to encompass "individual applications, systems in the traditional sense, subsystems, systems of systems, product lines, product families, whole enterprises, and other aggregations of interest" It is obvious that in ISO 42010, it has been attempted to limit the scope of the definition for "systems". However, the original and more generic definition of a system in general system theory as "a set of elements in interaction" [3] may be of more interests, especially within the context of EA. ...
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In this paper, a survey of definitions for Enterprise Architecture (EA) and Enterprise Systems Architecture is proposed and it is discussed how Enterprise Architecture is different from Systems/Software Architecture. Whilst for some, the difference may be obvious; in practice, there are cases where the boundary becomes unclear and vague, resulting in a mix-up that affects the overall outcomes expected from EA. This paper tries to shed some light on the topic that for a CIO or CTO or any ICT Executive could be of interest.
... Its subject matter is the formulation and derivation of those principles which are valid for 'systems' in general". [20] These calls have stimulated recent debate about the nature, role and developmental status of systems principles, and this paper is a contribution to that discussion. In particular, I will here These calls have stimulated recent debate about the nature, role and developmental status of systems principles, and this paper is a contribution to that discussion. ...
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Systems engineering is increasingly challenged by the rising complexity of projects undertaken, resulting in increases in costs, failure rates, and negative unintended consequences. This has resulted in calls for more scientific principles to underpin the methods of systems engineering. In this paper, it is argued that our ability to improve systems Engineering’s methods depends on making the principles of systemology, of which systems engineering is a part, more diverse and more scientific. An architecture for systemology is introduced, which shows how the principles of systemology arise from interdependent processes spanning multiple disciplinary fields, and on this basis a typology is introduced, which can be used to classify systems principles and systems methods. This framework, consisting of an architecture and a typology, can be used to survey and classify the principles and methods currently in use in systemology, map vocabularies referring to them, identify key gaps, and expose opportunities for further development. It may, thus, serve as a tool for coordinating collaborative work towards advancing the scope and depth of systemology.
... In an SoS, the individual system components have managerial and operational independence, whereas the overall purpose of the system is to provide a function or service that cannot be provided by the individual systems independently [52]. The concept of system and system-of-systems is generally applicable to different categories of systems including [53]: ...
... Alternative approach is offered by Hvam (2001) that is later extended by Hvam, Mortensen, and Riis (2008), or the CPM procedure for conceptual modelling of configurators. The approach builds on the concepts of, object-oriented modelling (Bennet, McRobb, and Farmer 1999; Booch, Rumbaugh, and Jacobson 1999; Felfernig, Friedrich, and Jannach 2000), systems theory ( Bertalanffy 1968;Skyttner 2005) and modelling mechanical products ( Hubka and Eder 1988;Schwarze 1996; Jiao, Simpson, and Siddique 2007). To support this method, Haug and Hvam (2007) and Shafiee et al. (2017) proposed IT tools to model, communicate and document product knowledge. ...
Article
This paper aims to increase understanding of the impact of using product-modelling techniques to structure and formalise knowledge in configurator projects. Companies that provide customised products increasingly apply configurators in support of sales and design activities, reaping benefits that include shorter lead times, improved quality of specifications and products, and lower overall product costs. The design and implementation of configurators are a challenging task that calls for scientifically based modelling techniques to support the formal representation of configurator knowledge. Even though extant literature has shown the importance of formal modelling techniques, the impact of utilising these techniques remains relatively unknown. Therefore, this article studies three main areas: (1) the impact of using modelling techniques based on Unified Modelling Language (UML), in which the phenomenon model and information model are considered visually, (2) non-UML-based modelling techniques, in which only the phenomenon model is considered and (3) non-formal modelling techniques. This study analyses the impact to companies from increased availability of product knowledge and improved control of product variants. The methodology employed is an exploratory survey, followed by interviews with 18 manufacturing companies providing customised products. The results indicate that companies using UML-based modelling techniques tend to have improved documentation of their product knowledge and an improved ability to reduce the number of product variants. This paper contributes to an increased understanding of what companies can gain from using more formalised modelling techniques in configurator projects, and under what circumstances they should be used.
... It has been defined as a group of independent but interrelated components comprising a unified whole. Systems thinking flourished following the Second World War, influenced deeply by general systems theory and the concept of the open system (Bertalanffy, 1950(Bertalanffy, , 1962(Bertalanffy, , 1968Von Bertalanffy, 1956). An open system is one that exchanges matter with its environment (Bertalanffy, 1968). ...
Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore the adoption of practices and investigating of commonalities/intensities between the factors for measuring organizational effectiveness (OE) across healthcare supply chains in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Design/methodology/approach System theory coupled with the Supplier-Input-Process-Output-Customer tool was applied to facilitate the linkage between different nodes of the healthcare chain. An exploratory approach was used to explore and measure the importance of various OE factors across various nodes of the healthcare supply chain. Data were collected using a two-stage questionnaire process addressed at personnel in the UAE’s healthcare sector. Findings The study identified that 62 OE factors in the health are supply chain. Of these, 15 are related to suppliers, 14 to the healthcare process, 12 to employees, 8 to patients and the community, 6 to government directives and 7 to branding. In total, 21 common factors were identified and clustered into groups based on commonalities and intensities. Research limitations/implications The study identifies the most important factors for healthcare organizations to achieve OE for different dimensions of operations or performance. These factors will provide valuable insights for decision makers in the sector; it will provide valuable insights to healthcare professionals and academia to investigate more on these factors. Originality/value While there is an increasing research interest in healthcare supply chains, this is the first study to investigate OE across the entire chain while also evaluating the importance of and commonalities in OE-enabling factors.
... The systems theory focuses on the interaction of related parts that together function as an ordered whole-a system. First proposed by Ludwig von Bertalanffy (1968), it is based on a number of straightforward yet important principles that set expectations for how a system functions. The principles are: 1) Systems are interrelated parts of an ordered whole; 2) each part affects the other parts and the whole; 3) the whole is greater than the sum of its parts; 4) systems are defined by their boundaries; 5) systems receive input and feedback from their environment; 6) systems seek to attain goals, and yet 7) systems tend toward equilibrium. ...
Article
Increased attention to former foster youth pursuing post-secondary education has resulted in the creation of college campus based support programs to address their need. However, limited empirical evidence and theoretical knowledge exist about these programs. This study seeks to describe the application of systems theory as a framework for examining a college campus based support program for former foster youth. In-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with 32 program stakeholders including students, mentors, collaborative members, and independent living program staff. Using qualitative data analysis software, holistic coding techniques were employed to analyze interview transcripts. Then applying principles of extended case method using systems theory, data were analyzed. Findings suggest systems theory serves as a framework for understanding the functioning of a college campus based support program. The theory’s concepts help delineate program components and roles of stakeholders; outline boundaries between and interactions among stakeholders; and identify program strengths and weakness. Systems theory plays an important role in identifying intervention components and providing a structure through which to identify and understand program elements as a part of the planning process. This study highlights the utility of systems theory as a framework for program planning and evaluation.
... Potential equifinality, as inferred from the use of LR, can be overcome with the use of DCNN. This reinforces von Bertalanffy´s definition of equifinality as only a temporary state 25 . This also shows the superior power of DL methods for correct identification of bone surface modifications over traditional ones. ...
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Accurate identification of bone surface modifications (BSM) is crucial for the taphonomic understanding of archaeological and paleontological sites. Critical interpretations of when humans started eating meat and animal fat or when they started using stone tools, or when they occupied new continents or interacted with predatory guilds impinge on accurate identifications of BSM. Until now, interpretations of Plio-Pleistocene BSM have been contentious because of the high uncertainty in discriminating among taphonomic agents. Recently, the use of machine learning algorithms has yielded high accuracy in the identification of BSM. A branch of machine learning methods based on imaging, computer vision (CV), has opened the door to a more objective and accurate method of BSM identification. The present work has selected two extremely similar types of BSM (cut marks made on fleshed an defleshed bones) to test the immense potential of artificial intelligence methods. This CV approach not only produced the highest accuracy in the classification of these types of BSM until present (95% on complete images of BSM and 88.89% of images of only internal mark features), but it also has enabled a method for determining which inconspicuous microscopic features determine successful BSM discrimination. The potential of this method in other areas of taphonomy and paleobiology is enormous.
... In this way we come to postulate a new discipline, called General System Theory. Its subject matter is the formulation and derivation of those principles which are valid for "systems" in general' [13]. Von Bertalanffy held that General Systems Theory 'is [the] scientific 1 Von Bertalanffy argued that the phenomenological "systemic isomorphisms" signify the existence of general [systems] principles that would form the foundation of a GST [24, p. 33]). ...
Article
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Systems Engineering is currently largely based on heuristics, but it is increasingly recognizing that it needs a scientifically profound systems theoretical underpinning that would enable it to deal with systems in a more holistic manner. Such a scientific general systems theory does not yet exist. The principles-laws-theories model of modern science suggests that such a general systems theory could arise from the discovery of scientific systems laws, whose discovery in turn depends on the formulation of scientific systems principles. In this chapter, I discuss the nature of such principles, show how scientific systems principles could be discovered by applying insights from the philosophy of science and illustrate this approach by deriving three general systems principles that have practical significance for science, design and management.
... Discussions about urban climate phenomena have increased in Brazil since Monteiro's systemic theoretical-methodological proposal [11]. This proposal relied on the general theory of systems [23], providing climatologists with tools to study the urban atmosphere focusing on aspects such as thermal comfort, air quality, and rainfall. Since then, climate studies in Brazilian cities have been carried out focusing on the thermodynamic system and on the human perception of thermal comfort. ...
Article
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Several studies demonstrate the potential of models for the representation of phenomena such as urban heat islands. This article aimed to analyze atmospheric heat islands (UHIucl) by integrating primary air temperature data with spatial information such as land use and relief from a multicriteria model based on multiple linear regression. Furthermore, we compared the measured and estimated air temperature at 11 p.m. with the surface temperature at 10:51 p.m. (local time). These temperatures were obtained through the thermal band of the Landsat 8 satellite considering extraction points of interest in Presidente Prudente city, Brazil. The multicriteria model showed reliability in UHIucl spatialization, reaching the confidence interval (p-value ≤ 0.05). The model proves that urban surface materials are the main energy sources modulating heat transfer to the atmosphere, while vegetation has a temperature-reducing effect. Precise mappings such as the one proposed here are relevant for the formulation of measures that support decision-making by public authorities. These mappings aim at urban planning that is resilient to the effects of urban climate and can be replicated in other realities.
... Diverse examples include dyke building against the intruding sea or behavioral advocacy against dominant values or incentives. While highly undesirable system features such as nepotism, corruption, social exploitation, or pollution might need to be directly addressed, system theory suggests that it is more effective to work with and not against system dynamics (Bertalanffy, 1949;Checkland, 1984). The pursuit of desirable social, biogeophysical, and social-ecological outcomes is thus likely to be more successful if strategies are adopted that rely on working with (rather than against) strategically selected prevalent system dynamics. ...
Chapter
Human–nature interactions are at the root of sustainability problems worldwide. For the Indonesian coastal and marine realm, this chapter asks: How does governance affect, and how might it transform, human, and societal behavior in the coastal and marine realm toward greater ecological and social sustainability? Equipped with definitions of key social science terms (including governance, institutions, social–ecological systems), the reader is introduced to major changes, issues, and sectors in Indonesian coastal governance. Major policy recommendations at the end of subsections on the governance of (1) mangroves, (2) fisheries and aquaculture, (3) watersheds and land use, (4) marine and coastal conservation, (5) coastal livelihoods and social needs, and (6) pollution are presented. In line with the need for integrated planning, overlaps and trade-offs between these sectoral recommendations are identified and, within a theoretical framework of adaptive, evolutionary, and anticipatory governance, a set of generic suggestions for integrated inclusive governance approaches is proposed. Abstrak Interaksi antara manusia dan alam adalah dasar dari masalah keberlanjutan di seluruh dunia. Untuk wilayah pesisir dan laut Indonesia, bab ini bertanya: bagaimana pengaruh tata kelola, dan bagaimana hal itu mengubah perilaku manusia dan masyarakat di wilayah pesisir dan kelautan menuju keberlanjutan ekologis dan sosial yang lebih baik? Dilengkapi dengan definisi istilah utama ilmu sosial (termasuk tata kelola, lembaga, sistem sosial-ekologis), pembaca diperkenalkan dengan perubahan-perubahan, masalah dan sektor utama dalam tata kelola pesisir Indonesia. Di akhir subbagian, disajikan rekomendasi kebijakan utama tentang tata kelola dari 1. Hutan bakau, 2. Perikanan dan akuakultur, 3. Daerah aliran sungai dan penggunaan lahan, 4. Konservasi laut dan pesisir, 5. Mata pencaharian pesisir dan kebutuhan sosial, dan 6. Polusi. Sejalan dengan kebutuhan untuk perencanaan terpadu, tumpang tindih dan trade-off antara rekomendasi sektoral diidentifikasi, dan dalam kerangka teoritis tata kelola adaptif, serta evolusi dan antisipatif, serangkaian saran umum untuk pendekatan tata kelola inklusif terintegrasi ditampilkan dalam bab ini.
... Un des problèmes principaux que présentent les méthodes d'optimisation est l'équifinalité. Elle est définie pour la première fois par Von Bertalanffy (1956). En effet, il est fortement possible qu'un ensemble infini de jeux de paramètres puisse permettre de vérifier les données de référence Aronica et al. (1998). ...
Thesis
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In this document, we detail 15 years of activities; first as a PhD student (2005-2008), then as an assistant professor (2008-2011) and finally as a lecturer (since 2011) at the University of Corsica. We describe our contributions, our research projects, our administrative and teaching activities. The main aim of our thesis work (Bisgambiglia (2008)) was to take into account imprecise data in a modeling and simulation process. They led to a proposal for the integration of the Fuzzy-Set theory, in- troduced by Zadeh (1975), in a Discrete EVent system Specification formalism (DEVS Zeigler (1976)). They continued with the goal of integrating into the modeling and simulation processes other methods of considering the uncertainties (Dubois and Prade (1988b)). Thereafter, we work to the representation of systems from the multi-agent paradigm (Ferber (1995b)) and proposed a formalization of a multi-agent systems from the formalisms PDEVS (parallel version of DEVS allowing to manage simultaneous events Chow and Zeigler (1994)) and DSDE (dynamic version of PDEVS to change structure dynamically Barros (1995)). The aim was to introduce more scientific rigor in multi-agent simulations and to allow their numerical reproducibility (c.f. Dynamic Parallel Discrete Event Multi-Agent Specification : DPDEMAS Franceschini et al. (2017)). Currently, we are working on optimization and machine learning methods to provide agents with the means to check the impact of their actions on the environment (Poiron-Guidoni et al. (2020b)). We wish to propose a complete approach to describe decision processes, from data to the formalization of simulation models adapted to the study domain.
... Since human goal-directed behavior is regulated by various factors that work together as a system, the systems approach can be very useful for the better understanding of human social behavior and social interaction (Coey et al., 2012;Luhmann, 1995;Maturana and Varela, 1980;von Bertalanffy, 1968). In the early 1940s, the Russian neurophysiologist Petr K. Anokhin proposed a new conditioning conceptthe theory of functional systemswherein he suggested a concrete and uniform mechanism for the formation and operation of a functional system (Anokhin, 1974). ...
Article
It is now widely accepted that inter-brain synchronization is an important and inevitable mechanism of interpersonal action coordination and social interaction behavior. This review of the current literature focuses first on the forward model for interpersonal action coordination and functional system theory for biological systems, two broadly similar concepts for adaptive system behavior. Further, we review interacting-brain and/or hyper-brain dynamics studies, to show the interplay between intra- and inter-brain connectivity resulting in hyper-brain network structure and network topology dynamics, and consider the functioning of interacting brains as a superordinate system. The concept of a superordinate system, or superorganism, is then evaluated with respect to neuronal and physiological systems group dynamics, which show further accompanying mechanisms of interpersonal interaction. We note that fundamental problems need to be resolved to better understand the neural mechanisms of interpersonal action coordination.
... This perspective is embedded in the ideas of the Russian thinker Alexandr Bogdanov [16], who began writing in 1904 on his empiriomonistic ideas of the philosophy of cognition and being. It resulted (from publications really beginning in 1917) in his universal science of organization (called Tektology) which, according to Bello [17], is equivalent to Bertalanffy's [18] later general systems theory. ...
Article
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Metacybernetics refers to the higher cybernetic orders that arise in living system agencies. Agencies are complex, and for them to be viable and hence survive, they require both stability and uncertainty reduction. Metacybernetics is defined through a metasystem hierarchy, and is mostly known through 1st and 2nd order cybernetics. In this exploratory paper the purpose is to create a framework that can underpin metacybernetics and explain the relationship between different cy-bernetic orders. The framework is built on agency theory which has both substructural and super-structural dimensions. Substructure has an interest in stability, is concerned with the generation of higher cybernetic orders, and is serviced by horizontal recursion. Superstructure is concerned with uncertainty reduction by uncovering hidden material or regulatory relationships, and is serviced by vertical recursion. Philosophical aspects to the framework are discussed, making distinction between global rationality through critical realism, and local rationality that relates to different cyber-netic orders that correspond to bounding paradigms like positivism and constructivism.
... "General systems theory implies that a system is a cohesive conglomeration of interrelated and interdependent parts that is either natural or man-made… Changing one part of the system usually affects other parts and the whole system, with predictable patterns of behavior." [5] To understand systems within the biosphere, we need to think in scales. We must consider systems within ecosystems, systems within organisms within ecosystems, systems within cells within organisms, and so forth. ...
Conference Paper
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This paper is an intermediary between the bio-art sculpture Mycocene (2018) created by the collective somme, and the theory that led us towards creating it. Mycocene is a hybrid work that blends bio-art, sculpture and media art through the methodology of bricolage. It critiques the current human-technological relationship and its subsequent effects on the environment. Humans have created a symbolic bubble around themselves that attempts to separate them from the natural world. Mycocene acts as a conceptual bridge between this anthropocentric bubble and the natural, aiming to exist as the opalescent residue between them and a discussion point around dissolving their membranes.
... The business model may be analysed in a systemic approach: input -transformation -output. The theory of systems shows that the operation of every element of a whole affects the operation of all the other elements (von Bertalanffy, 1956). The systemic approach to the business model makes it possible to analyse every element of the system separately and to analyse the mutual couplings between those elements and their relationships with the environment. ...
Conference Paper
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The article covers important issues related to the business model and resources. The main scientific aim of this paper is to analyze the resource base, in a business model of high-growth enterprises. For this purpose, the theory of systems was used to visualize the resources at the input and output in the business model. The empirical research was carried out among managerial personnel of 150 high-growth enterprises in Poland. The research proves that human capital, organizational capital and intellectual property are crucial for a business model of those enterprises. Moreover, knowledge a resource purchased on the resource market.
... El interés por los procesos de auto-organización viene de diferentes campos de estudio. Von Bertalanffy (1956) se enfocó en el rol de las interacciones internas y en los procesos necesarios para la creación de organización dentro de los sistemas biológicos en su teoría general de sistemas. Algunos otros autores exploraron la auto-organización desde una perspectiva de las comunicaciones y la retroalimentación en el control de los sistemas. ...
Technical Report
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Since the beginning of the last century, the concept of self-organization has been studied in different fields of study. There is a general consensus on its definition and although there are some variations on it, its essence in different fields does not change. Its applications have been more relevant in the area of psychology and recently in medicine, particularly in brain injuries. In marine ecosystems, its applications are not broad and are summarized more towards the conceptual theoretical part, that is, to understand how the interactions among the organisms that provide order to the system take place, and the relevance that this may have in the management of fishery resources. Climate change, understood as long-term climate variability, is mentioned as a preponderant factor to be taken into account in future strategies for fisheries management at the global level. Currently, we are experiencing a period of warming known as the "Recent Warming Period". The global temperature of the planet is unstable and in recent years its behavior has been upward and its consequences on resource management are still unknown. The aim of this paper was to provide a conceptual framework of self-organization, some indicators used to measure it in marine ecosystems, climate change (CC) and how to combine these factors to establish the possible consequences of CC on an exploited aquatic ecosystem. The case study is the southeast ecosystem of the mouth of the Gulf of California, Mexico, and although these results are preliminary, they provide evidence of the effect of CC on the sustainability of fisheries and the need for adaptability to those changes.
... A system consists of interdependent parts (elements or components) which interact with each other to form an integrated whole, in which the whole is greater than the sum of its parts (Von Bertalanffy 1968, Skyttner 2005, Dul, Bruder et al. 2012. General Systems Theory (GST) emerged as the opposition to a reductionist view. ...
Thesis
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The shipping industry is evolving towards an unknown and unpredictable future. There is speculation that in the next two decades the maritime industry will witness changes far exceeding those experienced over the past 100 years. The rapid development of artificial intelligence (AI), big data, automation and their impacts upon fully autonomous ships have the potential to transform the maritime industry. While change is inevitable in the maritime domain, automated solutions do not guarantee navigational safety, efficiency or improved seaway traffic management. Such dramatic change also calls for a more systematic approach to designing, evaluating, and adopting new solutions into a system. Although intended to support operator decision-making needs and reduce operator workload, the outcomes might create unforeseen changes throughout other aspects of the maritime sociotechnical system. In the maritime industry, the human is seldom put first in technology design which paradoxically introduces human-automation challenges related to technology acceptance, use, trust, reliance and risk. The co-existence and challenges of humans and automation, as it pertains to navigation and navigational assistance, are explored throughout this licentiate. This thesis considers the Sea Traffic Management (STM) Validation Project as the context to examine low-level automation functions intended to enhance operator (both Navigators and Vessel Traffic Service Operators) navigational safety and efficiency. The STM functions are designed to improve information sharing between ships and from ship to shore such as route sharing, enhanced monitoring, and route crosschecking. The licentiate is built on two different data collection efforts during 2017-2018 within the STM Validation project. The functions were tested on two user groups: Bridge Officers and Vessel Traffic Service Operators. All testing was completed in high-fidelity bridge simulators using traffic scenarios developed by subject matter experts. The aim of this licentiate is to study the impact of low levels of automation on operator behavior and to explore the broader impact upon the maritime sociotechnical system. A mixed-method approach was selected to address these questions and included the following: observations, questionnaires, the numerical assessment of ship behavior, and post-simulation debrief group sessions. To analyze and discuss the data, grounded theory, subject matter expert consultation, and descriptive statistics were used. The results point towards disruption in current working practices for both ship and shore operators, and uncertainty about the overall impact of low-level automation on operator behavior. Using a sociotechnical systems approach, gaps have been identified related to new technology testing and implementation. These gaps relate to the overall preparedness of the shipping industry to manage the evolution towards smarter ships. The findings discussed in this licentiate aim to promote further discussions about a quickly evolving industry concerning automation integration in shipping and the potential impact on human performance in safety-critical operations.
... ngineering design projects involve the efforts of many people who collaborate performing multiple activities to reach a common goal, such as the development of a product [271]. Researchers can study products, activities, and people from a systemic perspective where the object of study is considered as a system of related elements [91,102,280,288]. In engineering design, previous researchers have put emphasis on the 'structure' of such systems [91,102]; that is, the object of study is modelled as a network of interconnected elements. ...
Thesis
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This thesis is concerned with improving engineering design projects’ performance in terms of reducing iterations and rework, reducing completion time, and increasing robustness against error propagation and resource unavailability. Applying network science and data science on digital data traces from a real case, this thesis develops a socio-technical system perspective of engineering design projects. Some of the key findings are: 1) design process robustness depends on the way people are allocated to tasks; 2) iterations and rework are mitigated by modularity but increase with the number of stakeholders, the involvement of external partners, the number of task interfaces, and the amount of influence and dependence between teams; and 3) task completion time increases with task size, the number of people allocated to the task, and the number of task interfaces.
... It was explored just before WWII while engineers were struggling with communication and administration problems. Its philosophy is evolved from General System Theory, which is firstly reported by Austrian biologist Karl Ludwig von Bertalanffy (1956), and Norbert Wiener in cybernetics (1948). Since then it has been adopted by many different approaches such as living systems theory, system engineering, hard& soft system principles, complexity theory, emancipatory systems etc. ...
Conference Paper
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Systemic design is an emergent field demanded by the complexity and the scale of 21st-century problems. Its objective is to provide a holistic vision over fragmented entities to design responsibly for incremental change. For addressing the complexity of societal and environmental problems, it is important to equip future designers with a broad systemic design skill set. Industrial design education needs to be restructured and regularly updated to transfer required competencies compatible with the nature of contemporary issues. The Competency Domain Model (CDM) proposed in this paper, lists, and categories the essential designer competencies in four different domains. This classification could serve as a framework for educational reforms in the near future, and facilitate meaningful communication between different design programs. The model is applied to 15 industrial design departments in Turkey in order to understand the current status of design education in the national context and to present its potentials for others. Research results are shared within the context of insider knowledge.
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Despite the rapid growth and uptake of the positive psychological perspective by researchers and general audiences, hype regarding the field’s potential can lead to exaggerated claims, over-inflated expectations, disillusionment, dismissal, and unintentional harms. To help mature the field, we propose Systems Informed Positive Psychology (SIPP), which explicitly incorporates principles and concepts from the systems sciences into positive psychology theory, methodologies, practices, and discourse to optimize human social systems and the individuals within them. We describe historical underpinnings of SIPP, outline the SIPP perspective, clarify epistemological, political, and ethical assumptions, and highlight implications for research and practice. We suggest that SIPP can generate possibilities for creating sustainable unimagined futures.
Thesis
Most scholars in geography and related social sciences have recognized that the locational structure of man's economic, political and cultural activities is not in a static state. Yet, very little attempt has been made to conceptualize the manner by which the spatial arrangement of man's establishments change over time. Many empirical studies have noted the increasing trends towards urbanization and industrialization, the growing significance of tertiary economic activities in developing countries and the functional decline of rural villages. In this study it is maintained that these and other forms of areal reformation are products of a clearly defined process of spatial reorganization. The author's purpose is to identify this process and to investigate the mathematical and conceptual properties of certain "steps" involved. Although the intent of this study is to provide a conceptual foundation and to formulate models for considering the areal development of man's activities, empirical evidence and historical examples are provided to support some of the ideas proposed.The author maintains that the spacing and arrangement of man's functional establishments are products of their travel-time separation; man adapts his areal pat­terns of occupance to changes in travel-time connectivity. Travel-speed is accepted as the surrogate of transport efficiency. As man increases the speed of his transport, it becomes possible for him to market his goods and serv­ices over a larger area and to attain access to more dis­tant resources.As a consequence of increasing accessibility, it is possible to derive certain benefits of spatial reorganiza­tion which may be broadly described as products of centralization (the concentration of activities at a partic­ular place) and specialization (the concentration of effort on a particular activity in a given place or area). The less the expenditure of time (cost or effort) required to obtain man's survival and amenity needs from a given place, the greater is the opportunity for these scale economies to develop at that place. In this context, centralization and specialization are viewed (in part) as forms of spatial adaptations to the changing time-space framework of man's activities.To characterize and to measure the changing time­ space arrangement of these activities, the author has developed a concept of time-space convergence. Conver­gence is expressed as the rate at which the travel-time between places has been declining in response to increasingtransport efficiency. In a basic model indicating the "steps" in the process of spatial reorganization, conver­gence plays a significant role--it is a measure of the impact of transport innovation on the time-space connec­tivity of places and it is an expression of the increased accessibility of given places to other places and to sur­rounding areas. In that man adapts the locational struc­ture of his activities to changes in the time required to travel between them, convergence is also a surrogate of the potential scale economies (centralization and specialization) possible at given places. An expanded model is also proposed--it accounts for forms of areal adaptation not accounted for by the basic model (i.e., decentraliza­tion and decentralized centralization). Spatial reorganization is not operative everywhere to the same degree and it does not occur simultaneously at all places on the earth. Therefore, a complementary concept of relative advantage has been proposed. Essentially, this concept, based on the assumption of rationality and its defined implications (man has complete knowledge, perfect predictability and a desire to maximize his utility of time), implies that man introduces transport innovations between those places which will benefit most from reduced travel- time.Because convergence is operative in the process of spatial reorganization, it is logical that its individual properties must also be expressed in this reformation. For this reason, the author has given considerable atten­tion to the mathematical and conceptual properties of convergence and convergence rates. The mathematical prop­erties account for the manner by which places approach each other in time-space, and the conceptual properties characterize how convergence varies for different times of the day or year, for different economic, political and cultural realms, for different income groups, for commod­ity as opposed to passenger transport and so forth. Examples are used to clarify these considerations. By combining the convergence concept and its manifold mathematical and conceptual properties with the concept of relative advantage, insight into the mechanics of spatial reorganization is provided. The role of con­vergence is indicated and a means of ascertaining the degree of centralization and specialization likely to develop at a given place is made possible. In this manner, the spatial structure of man's functional establishments is viewed as a phenomenon changing in accordance with a clearly defined process of reorganization.
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This paper combines general definitions of innovation applicable in all economic sectors with a systems approach, to develop a conceptual framework for the statistical measurement of innovation. The resulting indicators can be used for monitoring and evaluation of innovation policies that have been implemented, as well as for international comparisons. The extension of harmonised innovation measurement to all economic sectors has implications for innovation research and for policy learning.
Chapter
The world of operational and work systems is changing not only because of increased commercial pressures to cut costs but also because the deployment of new technologies. Digitalization creates opportunities for new ways of organizing and managing existing work systems. Being able to achieve change and to design future systems are the core capabilities to meet future digitalization without compromising sustainable work systems. It is argued that the increase of automation and robots in theses work systems calls for a new approach. Paradoxically with increased automation and more advanced technology it is now more than ever essential to view these operational systems as people systems.
Book
This book focuses on modules and emergence with self-organization in the life sciences. As Aristotle observed so long ago, the whole is more than the sum of its parts. However, contemporary science is dominated by reductionist concepts and tends to neglect the non-reproducible features of complex systems, which emerge from the interaction of the smaller units they are composed of. The book is divided into three major parts; the essays in part A highlight the conceptual basis of emergence, linking it to the philosophy of science, systems biology and sustainability. This is subsequently exemplified in part B by applying the concept of emergence to various biological disciplines, such as genetics, developmental biology, neurobiology, plant physiology and ecology. New aspects of emergence come into play when biology meets the technical sciences, as revealed in a chapter on bionics. In turn, part C adopts a broader view, revealing how the organization of life follows a hierarchical order in terms of scalar dimensions, ranging from the molecular level to the entire biosphere. The idea that life is primarily and exclusively shaped by processes at the molecular level (and, in particular, by the information encoded in the genome) is refuted; rather, there is no hierarchy with respect to the level of causation in the cross-talk between the levels. In the last two chapters, the evolutionary trend toward ever-increasing complexity in living systems is interpreted in terms of the Gaia hypothesis sensu Lovelock: the entire biosphere is viewed as a functional unit (or ‘holobiont-like system’) organized to develop and sustain life on Earth.
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A "blueprint" for a new theory of social groups is presented. The theory was built using the following assumptions: (1) cooperation is the basic social interaction; (2) groups are socially real; (3) groups exist because they are necessary for survival, economic and social growth, and functioning of organizations; (4) we must use separate constructs for variables describing individuals and groups; (5) motivation of social behavior does not have to be self-oriented. The theory proposes to analyze groups using the following facets: group activity, social group characteristics, group development, and individuals. Theories and research of Petrovsky (1979), Deutsch (1949b), and Eskola (1988b) were used to develop specific constructs that describe each facet of analysis. Theoretical formulations were made about the relationships between constructs that belong to the same or different facet of analysis. A plan for the validation research of the theory is outlined.
Article
This paper provides a brief overview of Ludwig von Bertalanffy's contributions to the evolution of the fields of biology and systems theory and the significance of his work in relation to contemporary developments across a broad spectrum of disciplines. In documenting some of the ways in which his insights have remained relevant, inspiring scholars and practitioners in a variety of fields, it also addresses the philosophical and ethical implications inherent in Bertalanffy's work. Perhaps one of the most striking dimensions of his writing is his passionate critique of mechanistic science, which he sees as dehumanizing and as responsible for many of the challenges confronting humanity. In contrast, he emphasized the humanistic orientation of his conception of general systems theory as an approach that could provide guidelines and support for addressing these challenges.
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The UN Women Independent Evaluation Office has been promoting the integration of gender equality in evaluations since its inception. However, guidance and practice on how to implement gender-responsive approaches based on local cultural priorities or context has proven challenging. With the advent of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) there is a recognized need for more concrete guidance and tools and the development and testing of different methods and approaches to address this challenge. UN Women Independent Evaluation Office along with Australian and American researchers have responded to this challenge by developing a Guidance for Evaluators for the SDG Era. Introducing the Inclusive Systemic Evaluation for Gender equality, Environments, and Marginalized voices (ISE4GEMs): A New Approach for the SDG Era. Shortened to the #ISE4GEMs, the Guide is an original piece of work that brings together trans-disciplinary evaluation methods through a systemic evaluation approach. The Guide is written in two parts. Important concepts from systems thinking including boundary analysis, emergence, and the difference between systemic and systematic thinking, are introduced in Part A. Also introduced, is the importance of the intersectional relationships between each of the GEMs dimensions: Gender Equality, Environments, and Marginalized voices. The Guide encourages evaluation strategies that can co-account for coupled environmental and social changes. Gender accounts for the more traditional category of ‘man’ and ‘woman’ but opens the meanings to account for transgender and multiple identities. ‘Environments’ captures both human-made and natural socioecological landscapes and systems. The ‘Marginalized voices’ encourages practitioners to look for and include stakeholders (human and non-human) that might not normally be heard (e.g. culture, languages, elders, youth, LGBTQI, ethnic and religious groups, gender, disabled, indigenous, migrant, refugee) who may be pushed to the margins of society and assigned lesser importance, discriminated against or excluded. Part B provides practical steps to walk through the planning, conduct and analysis phases of an evaluation. The process is participatory and contributes to capacity development, learning and empowerment of participants and stakeholders alike to produce outcomes with a lasting impact.
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Engineered systems are facing requirements for increased adaptability, the capacity to cope with change. This includes flexibility to fulfill multiple purposes over long lifespans, robustness to environmental changes, and resilience to system change and damage. This dissertation investigates the use of self-organization as a tool for the design of adaptable systems. Self-organizing systems have no central or outside controller. They are built up from the interactions of autonomous agents, such as a swarm of robots. Because the agents are autonomous and self-interested, they can fulfill complex functional requirements. They are able to grow and rearrange themselves; different segments of the system can adapt locally to nonuniform terrain; if the systems are made of homogeneous agents, they can be resilient to failure of several components as other identical agents can take their place. Moreover, this complex functionality can be found in the interactions of fairly simple agents, decreasing the cost of manufacturing these systems at large scales. The main challenge in the design of self-organizing systems is designing an agent's behavior at a local level such that the system fulfills its function at a higher level. In order to overcome these challenges, this dissertation presents a design ontology and a computational synthesis framework. The design ontology identifies the fundamental elements in the design of self-organizing systems and groups them into a cohesive methodology. This ontology can guide designers at the conceptual design stage to create parametric behavioral models for self-organizing agents. Computational synthesis, based on multi-agent simulation for analysis and a genetic algorithm for optimization, can complete the detail design work. The optimized systems can then be deployed in diverse simulated scenarios. This dissertation presents four case studies on the design of self-organizing systems: a flocking system, a protective convoy, a foraging system, and a box-pushing system. The results of the case studies validate the design approach. They show that there are significant tradeoffs in the design of adaptable systems. Designers must sacrifice some efficiency and repeatability for adaptability. The ability to scale systems with constant conceptual designs was shown to be possible, but scaling with a constant detail design was shown to incur large fitness penalties. These penalties were more severe when systems scaled up in size rather than down.
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Purpose This paper aims to define hybrid reality (HyR) as an ongoing process in which artificial intelligence (AI) technology is gradually introduced as an active stakeholder by using reasoning to execute real-life activities. Also, to examine the implications of social responsibility (SR) concepts as featured in the HyR underlying common framework to progress towards the redefinition of global society. Design/methodology/approach A combination of systemic tools is used to examine and assess the development of HyR. The research is based on evolutionary and learning concepts, leading to the new meta-system development. It also builds upon the viable system model and AI, invoking SR as a conceptual framework. The research is conducted by using a new approach: using system dynamics based interactions modelling, the following two models have been proposed. The state-of-the-art HyR interactions model, examined using SR concepts; and a SR concept-based HyR model, examined using a smart vehicle case. Findings In the HyR model, interaction asymmetry between stakeholders is identified, possibly leading to pathological behaviour and AI technology learning corruption. To resolve these asymmetry issues, an interaction model based on SR concepts is proposed and examined on the example of an autonomous vehicle transport service. The examination results display significant changes in the conceptual understanding of transport services, their utilisation and data-sharing concepts. Research limitations/implications As the research proposal is theoretical in nature, the projection may not display a fully holistic perspective and can/should be complemented with empirical research results. Practical implications For researchers, HyR provides a new paradigm and can thereby articulate potential research frameworks. HyR designers can recognise projected development paths and the resources required for the implication of SR concepts. Individuals and organisations should be aware of their not necessarily passive role in HyR and can therefore use the necessary social force to activate their status. Originality/value For the first time, to the best of the author’s knowledge, the term HyR is openly elaborated and systemically examined by invoking concepts of SR. The proposed model provides an overview of the current and potential states of HyR and examines the gap between them.
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Buildings contribute to significant carbon dioxide emissions over their life cycle. The prefabrication approach has been promoted and increasingly integrated into building engineering and construction, which has attracted increasing research into the life-cycle carbon assessment (LCCA) of prefabricated buildings. However, there exist challenges. This paper examines the challenges and, through rethinking their theoretical fundamentals, proposes solutions with the aim to enhance the reliability and validity of research into the LCCA of prefabricated buildings. The challenges are found to be implicit system boundaries of prefabrication and LCCA: inconsistent methods, models and units of analysis of estimating buildings' life-cycle carbon dioxide emissions and LCCA being a labour-intensive process with limited accountability. The proposed solutions are a regression model of relating buildings' LCCA to 12 system boundaries, expressed by the system boundaries' inconsistency ratio (I R), which shows the level of difference between any two system boundaries; a five-level framework of units of analysis consisting of material, component, assembly, flat and building; and a smart-technology-integrated approach for automatic LCCA. The solutions are important and timely to help reduce buildings' life-cycle carbon dioxide emissions effectively for achieving long-term sustainability of society.
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