introduction to systems thinking l.
Skip this Video
Loading SlideShow in 5 Seconds..
Introduction to Systems Thinking PowerPoint Presentation
Download Presentation
Introduction to Systems Thinking

Loading in 2 Seconds...

play fullscreen
1 / 25

Introduction to Systems Thinking - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

  • Uploaded on

Introduction to Systems Thinking. By Louis Rowitz, PhD Director Illinois Institute for Maternal and Child Health Leadership.

I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.
Download Presentation

PowerPoint Slideshow about 'Introduction to Systems Thinking' - bernad

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript
introduction to systems thinking

Introduction to Systems Thinking

By Louis Rowitz, PhD


Illinois Institute for Maternal and Child Health Leadership


Systems Thinking is a way of seeing and talking about reality that helps us better understand and work with organization and communities to influx the quality of our lives.

Modified by Kim


A system is any group of interacting, interrelated, or interdependent parts that form a complex and unified whole that has a specific purpose

which are systems and which are collections
Bowl of fruit

Football team



Database of client


Tool in a toolbox


Local public health agency


Which are systems and which are collections
characteristics of a system
Characteristics of a System
  • Systems have a purpose that defines it as a discrete entity that holds it together
    • Purpose of an automobile……

Take you from one place to the other

characteristics of a system7
Characteristics of a System
  • All parts must be present for a system to carry out its purpose optimally
    • Automobile without its spark plugs……

Car doesn’t work

characteristics of a system8
Characteristics of a System
  • The order in which parts are arranged affects the performance of a system

Automobile with the driver in the backseat and the tires in the front seat

systems attempt to maintain stability through feedback
Systems attempt to maintain stability through feedback
  • Feedback provides information to the system that lets it know how it is doing relative to some desired state

Steering car and Feedback

the iceberg



Systemic Structure

Mental Models


The Iceberg
linear perspective
Linear Perspective

AB C DE

Cause = Effect

feedback perspective
Feedback Perspective

AB C DE

thinking in loops
Thinking in Loops

Sales are down

Marketing Promotions

Orders Increase

Sales are up

Sales are Down

Marketing Promotions


Marketing Promotions







Sales are Down/Up


balancing loops seek equilibrium some desired level of performance

Use of meditation

Acceptable stress level


Stress level

Balancing loops seek equilibrium- some desired level of performance



S = Same

O = Opposite


balancing loops
Balancing Loops

Actual Level

Desired Level

Corrective Action


questions these diagrams help answer
Questions these Diagrams help answer
  • Which gaps are driving our system when and by how much?
  • How accurately do we know what each of the gaps is?
  • How are we monitoring the gaps?
  • What are the different ways in which we can close the gaps?
  • How long does it take for perception to catch up to actual quality?
every link in a system contains a delay
Every link in a system contains a delay
  • Physical
  • Transactional
  • Informational
  • Perceptual



Limits to Growth Template

Balancing Loop Target

Limits or constraints

Growing action

Growth Process



Corrective Action

Limting Process

Actual performance

(that you can measure or observe, that you can see growing)