Exactly what is the "science" of systems has not be defined in a definitive way. The difficulty is that the new science is an inclusive science and thus includes all aspects of the inquiry. The old definition of science does not accomodate this new science of the system. So, it is necessary to revisit our definition of science and philosophy, such that they may complement each other rather than be either/or. This can be done in a rigorous way by using the scientific method of verification, used here in a general way, as one criterion of science. We do this also in a general way, and thus define science as the study of something that can be verified. Philosophy, then, can be defined as the study of general principles which apply to everything. Thus we have the dicotomy of the general and the particular as a complementary. So in our case, philosophy is the study of the general principles while theory is the application of those general principles. Philosophy is not about something in particular, science is not about general principles.


Bela H Banathy

Each scientific discipline in classical science has developed its OWN theoretical scheme. SYSTEMS SCIENCE, on the other hand, transcends those disciplinary boundaries, seeking alikeness (or isomorphy) of principles, concepts and laws that exist in the various realms of experience. We INTEGRATE, within the framework of systems theory, the findings of the various disciplines. That is the unique POWER of systems theory. With this power we can understand and work with the insights and knowledge generated by the disciplines that are relevant to our domain of inquiry The organized arrangement of these "general principles" constitutes a GENERAL THEORY OF SYSTEMS - an exposition applying to all systems. BHB

Evolution of Systemic Inquiry bhb

During the fifties, the basic concepts and principles of a general theory of systems were set forth by such pioneers of the systems movement as Ashby, Bertalanffy, Boulding, Fagen, Gerard, and Rappoport. These scholars represented variety of disciplines and fields of study. They shared and articulated a common conviction: the unified nature of reality. They recognized a compelling need for a unified disciplined inquiry in understanding and dealing with increasing complexities, complexities that are beyond the competence of any single discipline. As a result, they developed a trans-disciplinary perspective that emphasized the intrinsic order and interdependence of the world in all its manifestations.

A Taste of Systemics bhb

Purpose, process, interaction, integration, and emergence are salient markers of understanding systems. Furthermore, we should think about and define human activity systems always at three levels. (1) A system serves the purpose of its collective entity. (2) It serves the purpose of its members. (3) It serves its environment ot the larger system in which it is embedded.

Cybersystemics Gary Boyd

Two decades of teaching "educational Cybernetics" to Concordia University Graduate Students in Educational Technology, has led me to the conclusion that even innovation-oriented students "don't want to know!" new ideas. Totally new (to the students) ideas are not heard, or seen, or they are all too often defensively re-interpreted as something already familiar. Remember that; new ideas are bound to be strongly counter-intuitive, until you re-educate your intuition.

Living Systems Theory Elaine Parent

Living Systems Theory is a general theory about how all living systems "work," about how they maintain themselves and how they develop and change.

Synergy of Complements in Living Systems

A characteristic of a complex system, which appears as opposite in a single dimension, represents only a limited aspect of the entire system and, therefore, is insufficient for the complete classification of the system into categories of opposition. The essence of such a situation is in fact complementarity, which can lead to creative synergy between the participants. It is for this reason that we propose that it is more correct to talk about the "Synergy of Complements", rather than about the "Union of Opposites" (Sabelli, 1989) or about "Complementary Opposition" (Xu & Li, 1989) .

In Search of General Principles Charles Francois

our problem with complex situations is that we have no good understanding, nor models of complex and shifting global interrelations and processes. If we cut the whole into pieces, we suppress its functionality, and also its intelligibility. But, on the other hand, we still lack that good understanding of wholes as wholes, made of co-functional and co-evolving unseparable parts. This is our true challenge.


Earth as a System Jim Miller

The planet Earth is a mixed living and nonliving system. It is the suprasystem of an supranational systems as well as the total ecological system, with all its living and nonliving components. The Earth is studied in this article in terms of a general theory of all concrete systems, with special attention to the important subset of living systems.

Cybernetic Tutorial cf In various forms, such a tutorial has been developed along the last fifteen years by our Argentine Association.

Presently, the tutorial includes two succesive modules.

A. An Introductory Tutorial