Sister of Charity reflects on systemic change thinking

by | May 3, 2012 | Systemic change

The LCWR Global Concerns Committee offers a resource by Sr. Gertrude Foley SC, “An Invitation to Systems Thinking: An Opportunity to Act for Systemic Change.  PDF

Gertrude Foley SC reminds us: “A ‘system’ is an entity that maintains its existence and functions as  a whole through the interaction of its parts. The behavior of a system depends on the total structure.
The interrelationship among the parts of a system, therefore, must be continually sustained for the  system to exist. Systems are purposeful, open, counterintuitive, multidimensional, and have emergent properties not found in any of the parts by themselves. . . . systems thinking will prevent us from  unconsciously employing the same mental models that are causing the problems we want to solve. As  Albert Einstein once said, ‘No problem can be solved from the same consciousness that created it. We  must learn to see the world anew.’”

This tool reflects the developments in our  understanding of critical thinking and the complex nature of our reality. The material is divided into  two main parts: first, a general overview of the nature of systems thinking; second, a practical application of systems thinking to two sample cases. The resource also includes a worksheet to facilitate practice with this approach, as well as bibliographic material.

 

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