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#ISSS2016 USA [clear filter]
Thursday, July 21
 

9:00am

Prospects for a New Systemic Synthesis (Discussion)
2880 In a plenary session before lunch, five experts in different aspects of Systems Science (philosophy, engineering, science, theoretical exploration, methodology) reported on their current work and presented their views on the prospects of a new synthesis that could establish Systemology as a mainstream academic presence. In this break-out session they will answer audience questions about their work and their views, and discuss opportunities and challenges for the maturation and establishment of Systemology is a discipline. All conference attendees are invited to join in this wide-ranging discussion about the prospects and future of Systems Science.

Thursday July 21, 2016 9:00am - 10:00am
Benson 180
 
Monday, July 25
 

1:30pm

The Thinking Space: the Enactment of a Platform for Critical Systems Practice
2799 This paper focuses on describing the process of enactment of a ‘platform’, namely, The Thinking Space (TS), as a device for Critical Systems Practice CSP. This is part of a research project that generated a series of findings contributing to the study of the process whereby different systems methodologies, methods, tools and techniques are used in combination. This process is known as Critical Systems Practice (CSP). The study yielded ‘defensible generalisations’ from a series of research themes explored. These defensible generalisations or contributions relate to three research issues relevant to CSP, namely, (a) pluralism, (b) improvement, and (c) the role of the agent. The learning derived from these research themes led the researcher to formulate the ‘transferable problem solving capability’ of the study: the enactment of ‘platforms’ as devices for operationalising CSP. Platforms are defined as ‘organisational and intellectual spaces’ enacted by actors and evolving with the changing nature of actors’ moment-to-moment interactions, by means of engaging in a continuous mutual research endeavour and of engaging in enhancing collective competence, in order to pursue an informed practice (to pursue CSP). The study is the result of reflection and debate, which was reciprocally enriched by theory and practice. It presents the findings of an organisation-based action research project, where the researcher entered into a real-world situation and aimed both at improving it and acquiring knowledge about the experience. He became, for a period of three years, involved in the flux of ‘real-world problems’ within an engineering company that invited him to do research by using systems ideas in practice. This paper thus recapitulates on the contributions that this research endeavour had on the three research themes focusing on the emergence of a particular ‘platform’, the Thinking Space (TS), as a device for operationalising CSP; the fourth ‘emergent’ research theme. Concerning the ‘transferable problem solving capability’ of the study, the TS is one particular device considered to provide evidence for proposing the research theme of ‘platforms’. Keywords: platforms; Critical Systems Practice; transferable problem solving capability, pluralism; improvement; role of the agent This paper focuses on describing the process of enactment of a ‘platform’, namely, The Thinking Space (TS), as a device for Critical Systems Practice CSP. This is part of a research project that generated a series of findings contributing to the study of the process whereby different systems methodologies, methods, tools and techniques are used in combination. This process is known as Critical Systems Practice (CSP). The study yielded ‘defensible generalisations’ from a series of research themes explored. These defensible generalisations or contributions relate to three research issues relevant to CSP, namely, (a) pluralism, (b) improvement, and (c) the role of the agent. The learning derived from these research themes led the researcher to formulate the ‘transferable problem solving capability’ of the study: the enactment of ‘platforms’ as devices for operationalising CSP. Platforms are defined as ‘organisational and intellectual spaces’ enacted by actors and evolving with the changing nature of actors’ moment-to-moment interactions, by means of engaging in a continuous mutual research endeavour and of engaging in enhancing collective competence, in order to pursue an informed practice (to pursue CSP). The study is the result of reflection and debate, which was reciprocally enriched by theory and practice. It presents the findings of an organisation-based action research project, where the researcher entered into a real-world situation and aimed both at improving it and acquiring knowledge about the experience. He became, for a period of three years, involved in the flux of ‘real-world problems’ within an engineering company that invited him to do research by using systems ideas in practice. This paper thus recapitulates on the contributions that this research endeavour had on the three research themes focusing on the emergence of a particular ‘platform’, the Thinking Space (TS), as a device for operationalising CSP; the fourth ‘emergent’ research theme. Concerning the ‘transferable problem solving capability’ of the study, the TS is one particular device considered to provide evidence for proposing the research theme of ‘platforms’. Keywords: platforms; Critical Systems Practice; transferable problem solving capability, pluralism; improvement; role of the agent

Chairs
avatar for Jennifer Wilby

Jennifer Wilby

Vice President Admin, ISSS
From 1978 Jennifer started working in urban planning, followed by database programming and textbook publishing until 1993. In 1989, moving to San Jose, Jennifer graduated in 1992 from the MSc in Cybernetic Systems at San Jose State University. Moving back to the UK in 1993, she worked... Read More →

Monday July 25, 2016 1:30pm - 2:00pm
ECCR 1B55
 
Tuesday, July 26
 

1:30pm

Participatory Action-Research as a Methodology for the Development of Appropriate Technologies by Communities
2760 The social and environmental development potential of countries like Colombia, shows the need to articulate right from the communities, the processes and projects relevant to their territories. Furthermore when vital aspects of human health, such as access to clean water and water consumption, are also opportunities for the development of innovative technological solutions, stemming from the relationship between society and natural systems. In Colombia, for example, 62% of the municipalities have a medium to high risk of water availability vulnerability, and the remaining ones are on areas hard to reach or with a low population density. This amount increases to 80% if only the main cities are taken into account, which points to the importance of an efficient water resources management. In this context, a group of researchers together with a community of about 1,500 children and 15 teachers from schools of several municipalities of Cundinamarca department (Colombia), have been developing a technological platform founded on the community-based action research proposal of Ernest Stringer. This interactive technological platform, based on the use of SMS and the web, is called the “La Liga del Agua”. It is a jointly constructed space where synergies between the different stakeholders around the proper use of water resources can arise, based on the self-recognition of waste water problems on each of the participants’ homes. Thus, the problem is approached from the daily practices and the technological inefficiency, generating an empowerment of the water importance. The main theoretical foundation of this technological co-construction is based on the spirit of participatory and democratic systemic intervention, from the soft systems methodology of Peter Checkland, as well as the socio-cultural vision of the community that, voluntarily, intend to solve a problem collectively, as suggested by Rusell Ackoff. In this participatory co-construction, the following aspects were considered: i) the supply and environmental care systems are mediated by the interaction between the community stakeholders, ii) to develop solutions, it is not enough with the construction of appropriate technologies, research processes aimed at social appropriation of innovation are essential, and finally iii) the knowledge management, the use of technology and the impact of the teachers in the development of socio-environmental skills of the participating students. In this article, we will show the jointly design process of the “La Liga del Agua” platform and the incidence on the increase of the good practices of water resources usage. In addition, the results of the teaching strategies and recreational activities that seek to increase the empowerment by the actors and their interaction with the technology, will be presented. To conclude, all the learnings of the proposal will be introduced, so it can be replicated on other contexts with environmental concerns.

Chairs
avatar for Shankar Sankaran

Shankar Sankaran

Professor, University of Technology Sydney
Vice President Research and Publications, International Society for the Systems Sciences.SIG Chair: Action Research (see below for information)Shankar Sankaran specialises in project management, systems thinking and action research. He is a Core Member of a UTS Research Centre on... Read More →

Tuesday July 26, 2016 1:30pm - 2:00pm
ECCR 151

2:00pm

Addressing the Whole Whole
2807 This paper argues the need to develop a comprehensive, coherent, system-oriented description of the universe, and that doing so over time is quite feasible with the right approach. Charles Francois has stated: "We are indeed still - and mostly unconsciously - subservients to the general Cartesian reductionist model, which, after destroying the relationships network for the sake of 'simplicity', does never reconstruct it as an organized whole." This implies that the most important mission of the systems movement is to reconstruct the organized whole. We are deterred from this mission because of its apparent difficulty. It has long been recognized that "the whole" must be addressed to understand a system. But what exactly is "the whole"? The whole includes all of a system's parts. It also includes the relationships and processes of interactions among the objects and with the environment. And it requires addressing all in concert. (Let's call this all of the whole.) Furthermore, since a system's environment consists of other systems, these other systems must be considered part of the whole. This line of thinking expands the scope of the whole and when taken to its logical conclusion encompasses the entire universe. Hence the whole must be interpreted to mean not just a single system but the universal system of systems (the whole whole). While instances of the system pattern are interesting individually, the system pattern is most significant as a key element of the architecture of the universe. Finally, the universe is evolving, not static. The deep hierarchies of systems existing today provide clear evidence of continuing system evolution since the Big Bang. Hence the universal process of system evolution (whole history) must also be included in the whole. The whole means all of the interconnections within the broadest scope of space and time. It means the universe viewed as a system of systems, including all of the whole, the whole whole, and system evolution over the whole history. How can a system so large and complex be addressed? The system pattern, being fundamental to the functioning, structure, and evolution of the universe, provides a basis for organizing a universal description. While we can never describe the universe completely, we can develop and persistently improve and extend a description of the web of interacting systems. To do so we must systematically integrate, unify, and generalize the relevant nuggets filtered out of the existing vast sea of information. With modern tools and techniques the complexity of such an effort can be managed. The dominant approach for centuries has ignored systems in order to avoid complexity. The opposite trade-off is now required: we must embrace complexity so as to understand systems. By embracing and learning to effectively manage complexity, it is possible to describe the whole in the broadest sense and so to develop an unprecedented understanding of the universe as a system of systems. This paper aims to show that doing so is now viable.

Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Tuesday July 26, 2016 2:00pm - 2:30pm
ECCR 265

2:30pm

A Good Approach to Wicked Problems
2774 One of the reasons that systems thinking has developed over the years is to address problems that seemed to be unresolvable; the social equivalent of a Gordian knot. Since the term was first used in 1973 by Rittel and Weber (1973) these difficult problems have become known as “Wicked Problems”. A Wicked Problem is usually a social or cultural problem that is difficult or impossible to solve. Wicked problems become “wicked” not because they are innately evil , but due to the number of stakeholders, resources, lack of knowledge upon the subject, cost involved, the great possibility of unanticipated results and other factors that multiply the complexity of the issue to be addressed.. One of the defining characteristics of a Wicked Problem is that “solutions to wicked problems are not true or false, but good or bad. Ordinary problems have solutions that can be objectively evaluated as right or wrong. Choosing a solution to a wicked problem is largely a matter of judgment” Questions of what is the good and what is the bad are informed by systems of ethics. There are numerous ethical approaches to the ultimate question “what is to be done”? This paper argues that the version of American Pragmatism that has come to be known at Neo‐Pragmatism is a good choice to approach Wicked Problems. Neo‐ Pragmatism is uniquely suited to finding a “good” approach to a Wicked Problem due to the social nature of Wicked Problems. Since a Wicked Problem is fundamentally social it consists of constantly changing and shifting parts. If there is any stability in a Wicked Problem it is the stability of constant change. Neo‐ Pragmatism is founded on the understanding that all elements of human society are fundamentally contingent; that is to say that again the only constant is change. Neo‐ pragmatism is simply the only ethical structure that can readily adapt to the constant flux that is a Wicked Problem.

Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Tuesday July 26, 2016 2:30pm - 3:00pm
ECCR 265

3:30pm

Dynamics as Demarcation
2762 Like science, systems faces a demarcation problem. How might one specify what counts or doesn’t count as systemic thinking and practice? In this exploratory talk, I will review distinctions that others have drawn, and then describe a framework for understanding dynamics as a basis of distinction. This dynamics-as-demarcation approach has several advantages, including: illuminating various ways that systems thinking and practice have been described, historically and currently, and affording a “sweeping in” from across relevant academic fields of study and practice. A particular advantage of a dynamics-as-demarcation approach is the way in which it can be used to inform understandings of purposeful social change.

Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Tuesday July 26, 2016 3:30pm - 4:00pm
ECCR 200
 
Thursday, July 28
 

10:29am

Plenary VIII: Prospects for Scientific Systemic Synthesis
Description: Recent times have seen the emergence of new theoretical insights that may help to establish the frameworks, theories and methodologies we need to understand, design, build, explain, communicate about, utilize or operate, maintain, and evolve resilient and sustainable socio-ecological systems.  In this panel we bring together experts to present on such emerging developments in the areas of engineering, science, research, practice and philosophy, and to reflect on how these different stands can contribute to the formation of a new systemic synthesis that will make the ‘whole systems perspective’ scientific and practical. The panel presentations will be delivered in the last plenary before lunch, and be followed by an open discussion between the panellists and audience in a break-out session immediately after lunch.    

Chair: *David Rousseau

Panelists:


  • Bill Shindel - The S* minimal general systems meta-model, and its prospects as a general modelling foundation for Systems Engineering.

  • Len Troncale - Systems Processes Theory (SPT) , and its prospects as a general theoretical core for a science of systems and sustainability.

  • John Kineman - The PAR/Holon Relational Framework, and its prospects as a general methodology for Systems Research

  • Jennifer Wilby - Systemic methodologies and the prospects for enhancing them on the basis of emerging general systems theories and models.

  • David Rousseau - Systems Philosophy and the prospects for employing scientific general systems principles as the foundation of a systems worldview.


Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for John Kineman

John Kineman

SIG Chair: Relational Science, International Society for the System Sciences
Senior Research Scientist, CIRES, University of Colorado Stellenbosch Research Fellow (2016), Stellenbosch South AfricaAdjunct Professor, Vignan University, Vadlamudi, IndiaPresident (2015-2016), International Society for the Systems Sciences ISSS SIG Chair: Relational ScienceDr... Read More →
avatar for Bill Shindel

Bill Shindel

Co-lead of two global industry teams, System Patterns Challenge Team and INCOSE Agile Systems Engineering Life Cycle Model Project
​William D. (Bill) Schindel is co-lead of two global industry teams: (1) the System Patterns Challenge Team, part of the Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) Initiative of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE), and (2) the INCOSE Agile Systems Engineering Life... Read More →
avatar for Len Troncale

Len Troncale

SIG Chair: Systems Biology and Evolution, SIG Chair: Systems Pathology, California State Polytechnic University
SIG Chair: Joint Session(s): Systems Pathology and Systems Biology & Evolution (see below for information)Dr. Len Troncale is Professor Emeritus of Cell and Molecular Biology, and past Chairman of the Biology Department at California State Polytechnic University. He is also Director... Read More →
avatar for Jennifer Wilby

Jennifer Wilby

Vice President Admin, ISSS
From 1978 Jennifer started working in urban planning, followed by database programming and textbook publishing until 1993. In 1989, moving to San Jose, Jennifer graduated in 1992 from the MSc in Cybernetic Systems at San Jose State University. Moving back to the UK in 1993, she worked... Read More →


Thursday July 28, 2016 10:29am - 10:30am
MATH 100* Math Academic Building, University of Colorado

10:30am

Bill Schindel: The S* minimal general systems meta-model, and its prospects as a general modelling foundation for Systems Engineering.
Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Bill Shindel

Bill Shindel

Co-lead of two global industry teams, System Patterns Challenge Team and INCOSE Agile Systems Engineering Life Cycle Model Project
​William D. (Bill) Schindel is co-lead of two global industry teams: (1) the System Patterns Challenge Team, part of the Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) Initiative of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE), and (2) the INCOSE Agile Systems Engineering Life... Read More →


Thursday July 28, 2016 10:30am - 10:55am
MATH 100* Math Academic Building, University of Colorado

10:55am

Len Troncale: Systems Processes Theory (SPT) and its prospects as a general theoretical core for a science of systems and sustainability.
Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Thursday July 28, 2016 10:55am - 11:20am
MATH 100* Math Academic Building, University of Colorado

11:20am

John Kineman: The PAR/Holon Relational Framework and its prospects as a general methodology for Systems Research
Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for John Kineman

John Kineman

SIG Chair: Relational Science, International Society for the System Sciences
Senior Research Scientist, CIRES, University of Colorado Stellenbosch Research Fellow (2016), Stellenbosch South AfricaAdjunct Professor, Vignan University, Vadlamudi, IndiaPresident (2015-2016), International Society for the Systems Sciences ISSS SIG Chair: Relational ScienceDr... Read More →


Thursday July 28, 2016 11:20am - 11:45am
MATH 100* Math Academic Building, University of Colorado

11:45am

Jennifer Wilby: Systemic methodologies and the prospects for enhancing them on the basis of emerging general systems theories and models.
Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Speakers
avatar for Jennifer Wilby

Jennifer Wilby

Vice President Admin, ISSS
From 1978 Jennifer started working in urban planning, followed by database programming and textbook publishing until 1993. In 1989, moving to San Jose, Jennifer graduated in 1992 from the MSc in Cybernetic Systems at San Jose State University. Moving back to the UK in 1993, she worked... Read More →


Thursday July 28, 2016 11:45am - 11:55am
MATH 100* Math Academic Building, University of Colorado

11:55am

David Rousseau: Systems Philosophy and the prospects for employing scientific general systems principles as the foundation of a systems worldview.
Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Thursday July 28, 2016 11:55am - 12:10pm
MATH 100* Math Academic Building, University of Colorado

12:10pm

Plenary VIII: Q & A
Chairs
avatar for David Rousseau

David Rousseau

Founder & Managing Director, Centre for Systems Philosophy
SIG Chair: Research Towards a General Theory of SystemsSIG Chair: Systems Philosophy Dr. David Rousseau is the Founder and Managing Director of the Centre for Systems Philosophy, which promotes the use of Systems Philosophy as a methodology for addressing problems that require both... Read More →

Thursday July 28, 2016 12:10pm - 12:15pm
MATH 100* Math Academic Building, University of Colorado

2:30pm

Homeostats, Recursions and Time Scales: A Viable System Model Enquiry
2827 The Viable System Model is a broadly applicable organizational model originally developed by Stafford Beer in the steel industry and includes a number of homeostats, including the one between the attention to the present and to the future (the three/four homeostat monitored by System Five), the vertical authority/horizontal autonomy homeostat and the homeostat between the system (systems one/two and three). Also important are the many homeostats that connect the system with its present contractual and contextual environments and the ones oriented toward varying aspects of future time. The Viable System Model is recursive: that is that each system is embedded in a number of other more comprehensive subsystems ranging from authority relationships to community and regulatory ones. These are not authority relations in the strict sense as, although a community has standards and norms, and a regulatory body its rules, these apply primarily within strict boundaries or parameters. These homeostats and recursive relationships do not follow a normal ordinal pattern or straightforward time scale. A lower level of recursion may be (e.g. the ‘grass roots’ where the most far reaching potential innovations are explored while the more comprehensive level may be constrained to pursue mainly those ‘possible futures’ that are acceptable to the full range of their members. They may have shorter or longer feedback cycles and they may be working within frameworks that are anywhere from hundreds of years old to yesterday. This can and sometimes does lead to systems pathologies as well as new opportunities for integrated approaches. In this presentation, I will illustrate some of these homeostats and their implications for progress on environmental, social and organizational fronts. Keywords: Viable System Model, homeostasis, recursion, time scale

Chairs
Paper-Wshop

Thursday July 28, 2016 2:30pm - 3:00pm
ECCR 245