Will systems thinking help our political leaders?

Has our new administration embraced systems thinking?

By systems thinking, I mean the holistic perspective – systems thinking attempts to illustrate that events are separated by distance and time and that small catalytic events can cause large changes in complex systems. Acknowledging that an improvement in one area of a system can adversely affect another area of the system, it promotes organizational communication at all levels in order to avoid “stovepipe thinking”.

Systems thinking techniques may be used to study any kind of system — natural, scientific, engineered, human, or conceptual.

Several people, including Charles Brown, LJ Furman, and Linda Booth Sweeney all have commented on President Obama’s tendency to think this way.

Can we build models and find a path out of the multiple dilemmas we face?


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