Systems Practice: How to Act in a Climate-Change World

  • Ray Ison

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xvi
  2. Thinking and Acting Differently

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Ray Ison
      Pages 3-14
  3. Systems Practice as Juggling

  4. Systemic Practices

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 216-216
    2. Ray Ison
      Pages 243-265
    3. Ray Ison
      Pages 267-281
    4. Ray Ison
      Pages 283-300
  5. Valuing Systems Practice in a Climate-change World

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 302-302
    2. Ray Ison
      Pages 303-328
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 329-340

About this book


It is now accepted that humans are changing the climate of the Earth and this is the most compelling amongst a long litany of reasons as to why, collectively, we have to change our ways of thinking and acting. Most people now recognise that we have to be capable of adapting quickly as new and uncertain circumstances emerge: this capability will need to exist at personal, group, community, regional, national and international levels, all at the same time.

Systems Practice is structured into four parts. Part I introduces the societal need to move towards a more systemic and adaptive governance against the backdrop of human-induced climate change. Part II unpacks what is involved in systems practice by means of a juggler metaphor; examining situations where systems thinking offers useful understanding and opportunities for change. Part III identifies the main factors that constrain the uptake of systems practice and makes the case for innovation in practice by means of systemic inquiry, systemic action research and systemic intervention. The book concludes with Part IV, which critically examines how systems practice is, or might be, utilised at different levels from the personal to the societal.

The development of our capabilities to think and act systemically is an urgent priority and Systems Practice aims to show how to do systems thinking and translate that thinking into praxis (theory informed practical action) which will be welcomed by those managing in situations of complexity and uncertainty across all domains of professional and personal concern.


Action Research Climate Change Corporate Social Responsibility Managing Systemic Change Managing complexity Personal Praxiology Strategic risk management Systemic Inquiry Systems Practice development

Authors and affiliations

  • Ray Ison
    • 1
  1. 1.Milton KeynesUnited Kingdom

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag London Limited 2010
  • Publisher Name Springer, London
  • eBook Packages Computer Science
  • Print ISBN 978-1-84996-124-0
  • Online ISBN 978-1-84996-125-7
  • Buy this book on publisher's site