Donella Meadows, a professor at Dartmouth College, a long-time organic farmer, journalist, and systems analyst, was working on a book titled Thinking in. We love Donella Meadows’ take on nurturing systems. “The Dance” is a great motivator to post on the bulletin board at your think-tank, school. In her article, “Dancing with Systems,” the late and beloved Donella Meadows ( ) speaks to the mystery at the source of quest for wholeness. Self-organizing .

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Part of it is obvious. And through years of failure, he comes to learn dwncing the good guys are sometimes the bad guys and the bad guys are sometimes the good guys too.

Systems of Collective Wisdom

This page was last edited on 26 Decemberat The far more numerous examples of human goodness are barely noticed. It keeps you from falling too quickly into your own beliefs or misconceptions, or those of others. If these loops are in balance, the fish population will remain stable.

Honor and protect information. I think this book would be better at half the length. The sancing of essays and blog posts records the unfolding of Occupy sysgems the culture from September to the present. Look for the ways the system creates its own behavior. No part of the human race is separate either from other human beings or from the global ecosystem.

And sometimes blaming or trying to control the outside influence blinds one to the easier task of increasing responsibility within the system. In fact it probably makes one dangerously hubristic when it comes to systems thinking. The Limits to Growth Twelve leverage points. Green Party Peace Sign Bumper Sticker The Green Party has continually opposed entry into war and has consistently called for the immediate return of our troops, in stark contrast to the Democratic and Republican parties.

Hold fast to the goal of goodness. They make choices that serve themselves while considering their neighbors. Systems thinking by itself cannot bridge that gap. This rather sums up the difficulty that you face through thinking in systems. There’s the trap of the “drift to low performance. Carter was also trying to deal with a flood of illegal immigrants from Mexico. Public leaders are visibly, unrepentantly, amoral or immoral and are not held to account.


Donella Meadows recommendations for how to dance with and intervene in systems

She came up with the suggested methodology, how to change social systems and this is already quite a lot. Meadows was one of the co-authors of the Club of Rome Report on Limits to Growth which contributed to putting the issue of sustainability on the agenda of business and governments. There’s no one thing in what she says that I could point to and say it was something I wouldn’t have already known computer science definitely puts you in a systems frame of mind but the way she puts them together op This is really two books in one.

And there are a lot of connections and feedbacks. Mar 17, Bill rated it really liked it Shelves: Systems Thinking makes you look at things in a different way and gives you tools to better deal and influence the environment around you. It is, as the title advertises, a “primer,” so anyone can read it, and it is very readable.

Thinking in Systems: A Primer by Donella H. Meadows

What makes a difference is redesigning the system to improve the information, incentives, disincentives, goals, stresses, and constraints that have an effect on specific actors.

They are the least effective in terms lasting impact on the system behaviour. Non controversial examples is a thermostat, or a human body. And that I did not meet it already in my studies years befo I had big expectations and oh wow, this book is so much better than I expected in every imaginable way!

Wilder Create Your Badge. In it Donella makes the crucially important point that the most transformative and effective leverage points are addressed by acting at the level of paradigm-change, by addressing the culture change that would shift the dominant believes about the system. One way of making that system more, rather than less responsible, might have been to let professors keep control of their own thermostats and charge them directly for the amount of energy they use.


Finally the lack of conceptual clarity extends to some of the pivotal notions in the book. To understand that system, you will have to be able to learn from—while not being limited by—economists and chemists and psychologists and theologians.

Paradigm is the highest leverage point. Hold fast to the goal of goodness. These are all subsystems working together to form a larger whole. Mewdows 19, Jonathan Yu rated it really liked it. Dec 10, Philippe rated it it was ok Shelves: Listen to the wisdom of the system. Focus people on the bigger picture. Recommended to anybody, really. D, Carleton College B.

The world is complex and that is why our Hollywood movies have sucky plots, our systema say idiotic things that idiotic people believe, and the word “accurate economist” is an oxymoron. At the same time, pressure from predators and fishermen form negative loops that decrease the size of the school.

You read this book not because you want to learn about “systems” who cares about that?! Intrinsic responsibility means that the system is designed to send feedback about the consequences of decision-making directly and quickly and compellingly to the decision-makers.

Her example is a corporation in theory could be any organisation or institution. To read the rest of this article click here. Chickens making eggs which then make more chickens is an example of reinforcing or positive feedback. After a year-long trip with dith husband, Dennis Meadows, dith England to Sri Lanka and back, she became, along with him, a research fellow at MIT, as a member of a team in the department created by Jay Forrester, the inventor of system dynamics as well as the principle of magnetic data storage for computers.