The course introduces students to the systemic way of thinking with the primary goal of providing theoretical and conceptual tools and applied models of non-reductive approach, study, analysis, description and explantion of systems. Emphasis is placed on the necessity of systems theory and thinking in the design process.
- Introduction to the general concept of system: closed / open systems, supersystem / subsystem
- The 'system' concept and how it relates to the design process.
- Descriptive states and the structure of a system: states, discrete and continuous systems, state spaces, variety and constraint, entropy, information, system dynamics, probability, macro-state, negentropy, causality, circular causality, self-reference, goal-directionality, purpose / goal
- Systemic approach - Analytical / Mechanistic approach [complexity, complication / perplexity, reductionism, repeatability, theory refutation, systemic discrimination], the concept of the observer, First-Order Cybernetics, 2nd-order Cybernetics, Constructivism
- Control, Control Mechanisms, Control Hierarchies, the Law of Requisite Variety
- Organization, self-organization, homeostasis, dynamic self-regulation, non-linearity, principle of selective conservation, principle of auto-catalytic development
- Emergence, downward causation, evolution, adaptation fit
Upon successful completion of the course, students will be able to:
- Understand systems thinking, its concepts and principles especially in the area of Design.
- Know the systems theory, methodologies and tools that can be used in various areas and in particular in the design process.
- Understand the importance of key theoretical and practical concepts related to the course subject.
- Analyze, manage and explain problems and complex phenomena when reductionist practice is proved not sufficient, especially in the design process.
- Recognize, explore, analyze and understand key dimensions of the systems complexity where human interaction prevails, such as in the design process.
- Develop significant theoretical and practical tools and skills that are necessary to support the accommodation of complexity in the design process.
- Jackson M. C. (2019). Critical Systems Thinking and the Management of Complexity. Wiley
- Μαυροφίδης Θ., (2018). Κοινωνία και Σύστημα: Εισαγωγή στη σύγχρονη συστημική θεωρία, Πατάκης: Αθήνα
- Mingers J. 2014. Systems Thinking, Critical Realism and Philosophy: A Confluence of Ideas. Routledge: New York.
- Willke, H. (1997). Εισαγωγή στη συστημική θεωρία. ΚΡΙΤΙΚΗ