Methodology in the Large: Modeling All There Is

  • Brian R. Gaines
Part of the International Federation for Systems Research International Series on Systems Science and Engineering book series (IFSR, volume 7)


... in the three decades between now and the twenty-first century, millions of ordinary, psychologically normal people will face an abrupt collision with the future. (Ref. 58, p. 18)

Man not only exists but knows that he exists. In full awareness he studied his world and changes it to suit his purposes. He has learned how to interfere with ‘natural causation,’ insofar as this is merely the unconscious repetition of immutable similars. He is not merely cognizable as extant, but himself freely decides what shall exist. Man is mind, and the situation of man as man is a mental situation. (Ref. 31, p. 11)

The quantification of nature, which led to its explication in terms of mathematical structures, separated reality from all inherent ends and, consequently, separated the true from the good, science from ethics. (Ref. 38, p. 122)

In April 1982 a conference concerned with Model Realism took place at Bad Honnef in Germany. It was remarkable because the organizer, Horst Wedde, attempted to force comparability between the different approaches to modeling proposed by asking all participants to illustrate their methodologies applied to one of three well-defined case histories. The papers and commentaries given at the conference are available in the book Adequate Modeling of Systems.61 This paper is based on an evening address given by the author in a wine cellar as part of the lighter side of the conference. It attempts to put our endeavours to create increasingly real global models in the wider perspective of man’s search for meaning, illustrating the general points made by quotations from the book Groping in the Dark 40 which is based on comparisons of seven global models at the Sixth IIASA Symposium on Global Modelling.


Global Model Distance Perception Evening Address Linear System Theory Large Positive Integer 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

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  • Brian R. Gaines

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