Systems Diagrams: A Practical Guide.
The past few years have seen increased use of system diagrams. System diagrams provide an excellent way of clarifying complex situations and help to address identified problems. Potential users are spoilt for choice - there are literally dozens of different diagram based approaches.
However, there are not many easily accessible publications that describe how to match and use appropriate diagrams to particular tasks. Which is why System Diagrams; A Practical Guide came to be written.
The discussion of each approach is accompanied by a worked example and a set of questions that that the diagram addresses. There are also chapters on the role of diagrams in general; what constitutes a systemic inquiry and the overall nature of system diagrams.
System Diagrams; A Practical Guide covers six diagram approaches that between them cover a wide range of uses;
Rich Picturing. Useful when trying to get to grips with the complexity of a situation and work out which aspects you should be focusing on.
Influence Diagrams. Useful when you want to have a snapshot of what is influencing a particular issue or topic at a particular moment in time.
Causal Diagrams. Useful when you want to explore the possible consequences of specific causal relationships within a particular issue or topic over a period of time.
Cynefin. A diagram that helps you to think about and respond to a particular situation, or intervention, through five different framings; simple, complicated, complex, chaotic and confused.
Viable System Model (VSM). A diagram that helps to assess and ensure the viability of a purposeful activity, given the range of competing demands from different components of that endeavour.
Cultural Historical Activity System Model (CHAT). A diagram that guides a series of questions about how to people with different motivations can work together creatively and effectively, especially when responding to changing and challenging events.