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Providing individuals and organisations with a lens to understand systems and dissolve problems through systemic design – a combination of systems thinking, analytical psychology, and service design.

Dissolving the Problem is the best way to create lasting change. We can only dissolve a problem through design. More specifically, by redesigning the system that has it, so that the problem no longer exist.

Dr. Russel Ackoff

Our view on Systemic Design

A designer’s job is an ongoing quest for ideal solutions. You embark on these quests with a backpack of tools, canvases, and systematically prepared plans. But at one point the package starts becoming a burden. The tools are rendered blunt when exposed to the holistic and dynamic nature of large systems. The real human dimension gets lost in the human-centred paradigm, despite its name. And the designer’s intuition gets lost among the carefully laid-out plans and requirements.

Systemic Design is a multi-disciplinary approach, in which we draw upon insights from Systems Thinking, System Dynamics, Depth Psychology, Mythology, and Expressive Arts, to counter-balance and challenge the dominant practices in design.

We help designers reorganise their toolset, and redefine their own role in their quest for optimal service solutions for the organisations and constituents they serve.

In today’s complex problems, causes and effects are intertwined, rendering the implications of decisions unclear. Systems Thinking provides you with a lens to examine these problems from multiple perspectives, reiterate them in new ways, and investigate them more holistically.

The principles and techniques of this paradigm enable you to move beyond a purely event- or data-oriented approach to problem solving. And by exploring trends, structures and mental models, Systems Thinking helps you realize that problems should not be merely solved – they should be dissolved.

Quintessential design is transcendent – it reaches beyond the boundaries of an existing system in an attempt to device a new order, embodying your vision.

For individuals

Our university-accredited, cohort-based, live modules and certificate program offer an advanced learning opportunity, targeted primarily at service professionals and service designers.

For organizations

Seeing a system in its entirety is important for individuals – but essential for an organization. Our training and consulting services provide tailor-made solutions for your unique challenges.

Systemic Design program overview

Is your design systemic, or only systematic? Systematic design is methodical, there is a plan you follow, which is most often sequential, and relies on a canvas or model. If you are reading this, then chances are that you, like us, are already seeing the limits of this approach.

In contrast to systematic, systemic design is structural, and puts emphasis on how the parts interact to form a whole. Our Advanced Program in Systemic Design dives into this systemic understanding of the system and services you are designing. The program consists of three Foundations, with various modules as independent modules within these.

program overview illustration

Systems Thinking

Thinking is not synonymous with analysis. Our Systems Thinking Foundation consists of two standalone, but linked modules. The modules focus on the qualitative and quantitative sides of Systems Thinking respectively. Explore & apply.

Design Beyond Thinking

Thinking is only one of the four functions of consciousness. The two modules in the Design Beyond Thinking Foundation explores how we can use intuition, feeling and sensation in a professional service setting. In development.

Disciplined Imagination

Consciousness is only one part of our psyche. This single-module course will explore imagination as a discipline, and help you harness the power of your unconscious with more conscious control. In development.

Testimonials

world map showing origin country of participants

Our participants have joined us from 20 countries from all 6 continents. We are proud to represent a balanced gender distribution between women, men, and non-binary participants. Whoever you are, wherever you’re from, you will fit right in.

gender distribution - 58%female, 38% male, 4% non-binary

the team

The Professor

Arash Golnam

Dr. Arash Golnam

University Lecturer and Systems Scientist

The Facilitator

Peter Horvath

UX and Service Designer, Lecturer

Institutional Partner

The Taylor Institute logo

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The journey into the world of Systemic Design requires, 

a recognition of the interconnected nature of the world,

a willingness to recognise all these interrelationships,

a capacity to think about how we think,

a curiosity to learn how to learn, 

a realisation of the unintended consequences of our actions, 

and an awareness of complexity.