Systems Oriented Design in a nutshell

Here is a short and superficial presentation of Systems Oriented Design  


The field of systems thinking is populated with a myriad of theories and applications. Most scientific realms and knowledge based professions have managed to situate themselves within this landscape, to relate to the more or less generic theories and to develop specialized applications of those theories to suit their field. Examples are found in creativity research, systems engineering and management.  Some fields have not succeeded in such adaptation processes, one is the realm of design. Though there are a number of people referring to and applying systems theories and practices in design, these approaches are almost with no exception about importing systems thinking from other fields, either those that claim to be generic, like e.g. systems dynamics, or from adjacent fields like systems engineering.

These attempts have been not very successful. Though the need for being able to address greater levels of complexity is pressing, the spread of systems thinking in design has been limited. The reason must be that these imported concepts and methods are not easily combined with the main characteristics of design thinking and design practice. Typically the approaches are too technical and “mechanistic” or too “anthropological” leaving little space for design thinking, design practice and design creativity.

Design thinking and design practice are potentially very powerful approaches to dealing with super complexity.

The main mission of Systems Oriented Design is to build the designers own interpretation and implementation of systems thinking so that systems thinking can fully benefit from design thinking and practice and so that design thinking and practice can fully benefit from systems thinking. 

If you are interested in this building process please don’t hesitate to contact me on

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.