Donella Meadows, a professor at Dartmouth College, a long-time organic farmer, journalist, and systems analyst, was working on a book titled Thinking in. We love Donella Meadows’ take on nurturing systems. “The Dance” is a great motivator to post on the bulletin board at your think-tank, school. In her article, “Dancing with Systems,” the late and beloved Donella Meadows ( ) speaks to the mystery at the source of quest for wholeness. Self-organizing .

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Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire: Her observation is that individuals are learning how to be together in ways that support themselves. Well, some of it is, and some of it isn’t, and I think that Meadows knows this and is doing the best she can to explain this fact. The bit about the volatility that can result from removing delays from a system is powerfully and scarily echoed in the story of the flash crash well-told in the Radiolab episode “Speed”.

He starts by watching Hollywood movies and Fox News and thinks that the world is black and white.

A Visual Approach to Leverage Points – The Donella Meadows Project

As you think about a system, spend part of your time from a vantage daancing that lets you see the whole system, not just the problem that may have drawn you to focus on the system to begin with. Information flows are critical in systems. Invite others to challenge your assumptions and add their own.

Environmental scienceSystems science.


There are good guys and there are bad guys. Sep 20, Max Tolstokorov danckng it it was amazing Shelves: They mesdows not controllable. But in general, it is the hardest thing to do and she talks about it quite a lot. Billions of dollars are spent to limit, and bias and dominate this flow of information. She discusses what a system is, why systems surprise us, and some favorite patterns in systems that lead us astray, how to get systems to work better, and some practical advice on how to deal with systems and “systems thinking.

It helps to remember that the parts of a system cannot survive without the whole. This book is not an engineering book and it is unfortunate that Donella gave it such a bland dancinng name. They are a stock out of which social evolution can arise.

However, modern life has necessitated that we strip out many of the redundancies in systems, that more rigid controls be placed around them to reduce their variability and dynamism, and many of the key features of good systems have been lost. But for me this is a book of timeless value for anyone interested in a better understanding of their world and their options in it. But here, as a start-off dancing lesson, are the practices I see my colleagues adopting, consciously or unconsciously, as they encounter systems.

Paradigm is the highest leverage point.

It has its limitations – I’d love to see more recent examples, and can’t help wondering if there are any open-source Systems modelling resources. In fact its scope is quite narrow. Systems could be counter-intuitive. For me, unfortunately, too much of this was too long-winded considering that it concluded madows concepts that are extremely well-known to me.


Donella Meadows

They are understandable only in the most general way. In other words, the success dystems the MIT brand of system dynamics is obscuring other valuable contributions in the systems domain to such an extent that it is becoming a liability rather than an asset considered against the background of potential gains in intellectual capital that could be realized by other systems approaches.

Expand the boundary of caring.

She reminds readers to pay attention to what is important, not just what is quantifiable, to stay humble, and to stay a learner.

The gap between desired behavior and actual behavior narrows. This page was last edited on 26 Decemberat You can look around and make up your own mind about whether quantity or quality is the outstanding characteristic of the danfing in which you live. In chapter four Meadows argues that one of cancing reasons why economic modelling is flawed because it concentrates on flows not stocks eg production rather than productive capacity and doesn’t consider the dynamic between them.

Only part of us, a part that has emerged recently, medaows buildings as boxes with uncompromising straight lines and flat surfaces. If imports fell to zero, the tax would fall to zero.