Applications of Systems Thinking and Soft Operations Research in Managing Complexity

From Problem Framing to Problem Solving

  • Anthony J. Masys

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-viii
  2. Anthony J. Masys
    Pages 1-9
  3. Organizational Theme

  4. Disaster Management Theme

  5. Systems Approaches Theme

About this book


This book captures current trends and developments in the field of systems thinking and soft operations research which can be applied to solve today's problems of dynamic complexity and interdependency. Such ‘wicked problems’ and messes are seemingly intractable problems characterized as value-laden, ambiguous, and unstable, that resist being tamed by classical problem solving. Actions and interventions associated with this complex problem space can have highly unpredictable and unintended consequences. Examples of such complex problems include health care reform, global climate change, transnational serious and organized crime, terrorism, homeland security, human security, disaster management, and humanitarian aid. Moving towards the development of solutions to these complex problem spaces depends on the lens we use to examine them and how we frame the problem. It will be shown that systems thinking and soft operations research has had great success in contributing to the management of complexity. 


Humanitarian disaster planning Managing complexity in organizations Post-disaster reconstruction Predictability of extreme all-hazards events Rebuilding with resilience Resilience governance Soft OR applied to disaster management Soft social systems Solving complex problems Systems thinking and disaster management Systems thinking in organization Systems-thinking in accident investigation

Editors and affiliations

  • Anthony J. Masys
    • 1
  1. 1.Centre for Security ScienceOttawaCanada

Bibliographic information

Industry Sectors
Finance, Business & Banking