Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login

A review of the recent contribution of systems thinking to operational research and management science

Contents:

Author Info

  • Mingers, John
  • White, Leroy
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    The systems approach, or systems thinking, has been intimately connected with the development of OR and management science initially through the work of founders such as Churchman and Ackoff and latterly through innovations such as soft systems. In this paper we have undertaken a review of the contribution that systems thinking has been making more recently, especially to the practice of OR. Systems thinking is a discipline in its own right, with many theoretical and methodological developments, but it is also applicable to almost any problem area because of its generality, and so such a review must always be selective. We have looked at the literature from both a theoretical and an applications orientation. In the first part we consider the main systems theories and methodologies in terms of their recent developments and also their applications. This covers: the systems approach, complexity theory, cybernetics, system dynamics, soft OR and PSMs, critical systems and multimethodology. In the second part we review the main domains of application: strategy, information systems, organisations, production and operations, ecology and agriculture, and medicine and health. Our overall conclusion is that while systems may not be well established institutionally, in terms of academic departments, it is incredibly healthy in terms of the quantity and variety of its applications.

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6VCT-4Y0T931-1/2/4fa7f3e431fbc2e1913466ebba409859
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal European Journal of Operational Research.

    Volume (Year): 207 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 3 (December)
    Pages: 1147-1161

    as in new window
    Handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:207:y:2010:i:3:p:1147-1161

    Contact details of provider:
    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/eor

    Related research

    Keywords: Systems thinking Systems approach Complexity theory System dynamics Soft systems methodology Cybernetics Critical systems Multimethodology;

    References

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    Citations

    Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
    as in new window

    Cited by:
    1. Trutnevyte, Evelina & Stauffacher, Michael & Scholz, Roland W., 2012. "Linking stakeholder visions with resource allocation scenarios and multi-criteria assessment," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 219(3), pages 762-772.
    2. Michnik, Jerzy, 2013. "Weighted Influence Non-linear Gauge System (WINGS) – An analysis method for the systems of interrelated components," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 228(3), pages 536-544.
    3. Li, Ya & Zhu, Zhichang, 2014. "Soft OR in China: A critical report," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 232(3), pages 427-434.
    4. Yearworth, Mike & White, Leroy, 2013. "The uses of qualitative data in multimethodology: Developing causal loop diagrams during the coding process," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 231(1), pages 151-161.
    5. Liu, Wenbin B. & Meng, Wei & Mingers, John & Tang, Ning & Wang, Wei, 2012. "Developing a performance management system using soft systems methodology: A Chinese case study," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 223(2), pages 529-540.
    6. Jean-Fabrice Lebraty & Katia Lobre, 2010. "Contrôle de l'information et crowdsourcing," Post-Print halshs-00545788, HAL.
    7. Müller, Matthias Otto & Stämpfli, Adrian & Dold, Ursula & Hammer, Thomas, 2011. "Energy autarky: A conceptual framework for sustainable regional development," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 39(10), pages 5800-5810, October.
    8. Ülengin, Füsun & Önsel, Şule & Aktas, Emel & Kabak, Özgür & Özaydın, Özay, 2014. "A decision support methodology to enhance the competitiveness of the Turkish automotive industry," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 234(3), pages 789-801.
    9. Espinosa, Angela & Walker, J., 2013. "Complexity management in practice: A Viable System Model intervention in an Irish eco-community," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 225(1), pages 118-129.

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:ejores:v:207:y:2010:i:3:p:1147-1161. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.