This pioneering text provides a comprehensive introduction to systems structure, function, and modeling as applied in all fields of science and engineering. Systems understanding is increasingly recognized as a key to a more holistic education and greater problem solving skills, and is also reflected in the trend toward interdisciplinary approaches to research on complex phenomena. While the concepts and components of systems science will continue to be distributed throughout the various disciplines, undergraduate degree programs in systems science are also being developed, including at the authors’ own institutions. However, the subject is approached, systems science as a basis for understanding the components and drivers of phenomena at all scales should be viewed with the same importance as a traditional liberal arts education. Principles of Systems Science contains many graphs, illustrations, side bars, examples, and problems to enhance understanding. From basic principles of organization, complexity, abstract representations, and behavior (dynamics) to deeper aspects such as the relations between information, knowledge, computation, and system control, to higher order aspects such as auto-organization, emergence and evolution, the book provides an integrated perspective on the comprehensive nature of systems. It ends with practical aspects such as systems analysis, computer modeling, and systems engineering that demonstrate how the knowledge of systems can be used to solve problems in the real world. Each chapter is broken into parts beginning with qualitative descriptions that stand alone for students who have taken intermediate algebra. The second part presents quantitative descriptions that are based on pre-calculus and advanced algebra, providing a more formal treatment for students who have the necessary mathematical background. Numerous examples of systems from every realm of life, including the physical and biological sciences, humanities, social sciences, engineering, pre-med and pre-law, are based on the fundamental systems concepts of boundaries, components as subsystems, processes as flows of materials, energy, and messages, work accomplished, functions performed, hierarchical structures, and more. Understanding these basics enables further understanding both of how systems endure and how they may become increasingly complex and exhibit new properties or characteristics.
A solid foundation to the field, both for the reality that systems are everywhere and the method on how to tackle this
My initial interest in the book and this field came from reading Ludwig von Bertalanffy's General System Theory. Although in retrospect, reading Principles of Systems Science first would have been better.
The authors of Principles of Systems Science practice what they teach, often switch between fields, effectively showing how economics, biology, business, and myriad other subjects can all be seen through the lenses of Systems Science. This is part and parcel of Systems Science. Bertalanffy does the same thing in General System Theory. I personally like that, it's the way I think, so it's quite natural to me even though I'm not well versed in some of these subjects (notably biology), but to some it might be off-putting.
While the book does not require any specific advanced math, any math is well identified in the Quant boxes, there is frequent use of Graph Theory. Also a number of chapters rely heavily on Evolution, while again no preexisting knowledge is required to understand the book, already knowing of the concept of natural selection goes a long way in keeping up.
In its aspect as an introduction to the field the book is successful. As the title indicates, it's a textbook for the principles of Systems Science. Each Chapter has a reasonably sized, but always effectively curated bibliography pointing the way to learn more about a specific topic. The most effective part of the book is as a way to learn to think in a different way, thinking in terms of systems, instead of one to one cause and effect. Now I find that I see systems everywhere, I'm taking that as an indication that reading the book is working.
Awesome book! Very meticulous, detailed and relevant to everyday systems! This book is a must buy! I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the interrelationship between systems and their composites. It’s both intuitive and deeply thought provoking! Again that’s a wonderful book!
Awesome book! Very meticulous, detailed and relevant to everyday systems! This book is a must buy! I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in the interrelationship between systems and their composites. It’s both intuitive and deeply thought provoking! Again that’s a wonderful book