Liberating Systems Theory

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Springer US, Aug 31, 1990 - Business & Economics - 248 pages
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Contemporary Systems Thinking is a series of texts, each of which deals comparatively and/or critically with different aspects of holistic thinking at the frontiers of the discipline. Traditionally, writings by systems thinkers have been concerned with single theme propositions such as General Systems Theory, Cybernetics, Operations Research, System Dynamics, Soft Systems Methodology and many others. Recently there have been attempts to fulfil a different yet equally important role by comparative analyses of viewpoints and approaches, each addressing disparate areas of study such as: modeling and simulation, measurement, management, 'problem solving' methods, international relations, social theory and last, but not exhaustively or least, philosophy. In a recent book these were drawn together within a multiform framework as part of an eclectic discussion -a nearly impossible task as I discovered (see Dealing With Complexity -An Introduction to the Theory and Application of Systems Science, R. L. Flood and E. R. Carson, Plenum, New York, 1988). Nevertheless, bringing many sources together led to several achievements, among which was showing a great diversity of approaches, ideas and application areas that systems thinking contributes to (although often with difficulties remaining unresolved). More important, however, while working on that manuscript I became aware of the need for and potential value in a series of books, each focusing in detail on the study areas mentioned above.

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About the author (1990)

About the authors Robert L. Flood, born 1955, is Professor of Management Sciences at the University of Hull, UK. He worked for 8 years in management with Paramount Pictures, National Opinion Polls and the Berkshire Area Health Authority, and actively pursues his management interests through consultancy, mainly in commercial organisations. He has authored 4 books, edited 2 others, is founding editor of the journal Systems Practice and has published in many other learned journals. Professor Flood holds a PhD in Systems Science and is also a Chartered Engineer. Michael C. Jackson, born 1951, is Professor of Management Systems at the University of Hull, UK. Prior to entering academic life he worked for 4 years in the civil service. He enjoys diverse consultancy interests with a particular focus on community projects and non-profit-making organisations. He has authored 2 books, edited 6 others, is deputy editor of the journal Systems Practice and has published in many other learned journals and contributed to several books. Professor Jackson holds a Masters degree in Systems and is currently Chair of the UK Systems Society.