Category: RKC Assignments

Unit 1b: Introduction to Systems Thinking – One Minute Paper

One of the key lessons learnt from this unit is the highlight on the differences between self-regulating systems and self-organizing systems. In a self-regulating system is it seen that the behavior of the system which is the dynamic property of the system is controlled through a feedback mechanism. On the other hand, a self-organizing system becomes more organized as it goes towards equilibrium whereby the interaction between the object and it’s environment changes object in the desired direction.

By looking at the history of systems thinking, it is shown that Darwin’s work gave a notion of natural systems tending towards an equilibrium state – a notion that is later debunked by environmental scientists and a number of other scientists as it became more apparent that man-made scientific systems and natural and social systems are not the same. Natural systems are considered complex and there is no equilibrium state.

The self-regulating or self-organizing nature of man-made systems does not reflect the same complexity observed in natural systems. One question that lingers is if there would be any significant benefits in having man-made systems that mimic the complex behavior of natural systems and what would it take to implement systems that behave like natural systems?