Soft Systems Methodology: Conceptual Model Building and Its Contribution

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9780471894896: Soft Systems Methodology: Conceptual Model Building and Its Contribution

Conceptual model building is accepted as a key phase in Soft Systems Methodology. Despite the recognition of the importance of the SSM, students are still experiencing difficulty with the basic process of conceptual model building. This book addresses that issue.

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From the Back Cover:

"SSM offers an elegantly simple approach that is both powerful, yet non-threatening and one that forces organisations to confront questions essential to their very survival such as, "Are we doing the right thing?"
From the Foreword by Mike Duffy, Operations Director, The Smith Group

Since its inception more than thirty years ago, the benefits of using Soft Systems Methodology for problem solving has gained worldwide recognition. Yet, despite recognising the importance of SSM, students and practitioners still experience considerable difficulty with the intellectual process involved.

Based on a lifetime experience as an academic and consultant, Brian Wilson provides guidance on how to develop a range of conceptual models across a variety of business problems. Building on his earlier work in Systems: Concepts, Methodologies and Applications he takes a practical approach to the topic based on the premise that all organisations are unique. He develops concepts to articulate ways of thinking about complexity. These are an alternative to mathematically-based concepts, and they offer rigorous, and defensible ways of answering the question 'What do we take the organisation to be?' A model of the most appropriate and relevant concept for your own organisation can then be successfully developed and applied.

Of relevance to organisations of any type, or any size, this book shows how model building within SSM can be used to cope with real-life problems. It will be an invaluable resource for students and practitioners in both the public and private sectors.

From the Inside Flap:

  • provides a practical approach to an established and important topic
  • builds on the success of his own and Peter Checkland's work in the area
  • case studies include the Army, the Navy, the Prison Service, Trustee Savings Bank, Morecambe Bay NHS Trust, the Met. Office and a theatre
  • offers a range of illustrative applications

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