International Society for the Systems Sciences The International Society for the Systems Sciences (ISSS) is a world-wide organization for systems sciences. The overall purpose of the ISSS is: "to promote the development of conceptual frameworks based on general system theory, as well as their implementation in practice. It further seeks to encourage research and facilitate communication between and among scientists and professionals from various disciplines and professions at local, regional, national, and international levels
Glossary of systems theory A glossary of terms as relating to systems theory. A B C Systems - A Journey Along the Way Systems A Journey Along theWay Welcome to a journey in the realm of systems. Closed system The term closed system refers to a physical system which does not allow certain types of transfers (such as transfer of mass) in or out of the system. The specification of what types of transfers are excluded, is different in different contexts. In physics In classical mechanics In nonrelativistic classical mechanics, a closed system is a physical system which doesn't exchange any matter with its surroundings, and isn't subject to any force whose source is external to the system. A closed system in classical mechanics would be considered an isolated system in thermodynamics. In thermodynamics
Systems Theory Systems theory is the interdisciplinary study of systems in general, with the goal of elucidating principles that can be applied to all types of systems at all nesting levels in all fields of research. The term does not yet have a well-established, precise meaning, but systems theory can reasonably be considered a specialization of systems thinking; alternatively as a goal output of systems science and systems engineering, with an emphasis on generality useful across a broad range of systems (versus the particular models of individual fields). A central topic of systems theory is self-regulating systems, i.e. systems self-correcting through feedback. Self-regulating systems are found in nature, including the physiological systems of our body, in local and global ecosystems, and in climate—and in human learning processes (from the individual on up through international organizations like the UN).
Systems Analysis Interesting Web Sites List Systems Analysis Web Sites General Systems Analysis Links Systems and Systems Thinking Hard systems In systems science Hard systems is a title sometimes used to differentiate between different types of systems problems. It is opposing soft systems. Overview While Soft systems thinking treats all problems as ill-defined or not easily quantified, Hard systems approaches (Systems analysis (structured methods), Operations research and so on) assume that: the problems associated with such systems are well-definedthey have a single, optimum solutiona scientific approach to problem-solving will work welltechnical factors will tend to predominate Methodology
Soft systems methodology Overview It is a common misunderstanding that SSM is a methodology for dealing solely with ‘soft problems’ (i.e., problems which involve psychological, social, and cultural elements). SSM does not differentiate between ‘soft’ and ‘hard’ problems, it merely provides a different way of dealing with situations perceived as problematic. The ‘hardness’ or ‘softness’ is not the intrinsic quality of the problem situation to be addressed, it is an aspect of the way those involved address the situation. Each situation perceived as problematic has both ‘hard’ and ‘soft’ elements. The very notion of a problem is contingent on a human being perceiving it as such. e.g. Ludwig von Bertalanffy, General System Theory (1968) The Quest for a General System Theory There exist models, principles, and laws that apply to generalized systems or their subclasses, irrespective of their particular kind, the nature of their component elements, and the relation or 'forces' between them. It seems legitimate to ask for a theory, not of systems of a more or less special kind, but of universal principles applying to systems in general. In this way we 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.