Systemic Design

Theory, Methods, and Practice

  • Peter Jones
  • Kyoichi Kijima

Part of the Translational Systems Sciences book series (TSS, volume 8)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xviii
  2. Integrative Practices

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Chih-Chun Chen, Nathan Crilly
      Pages 53-67
    3. Peter Pennefather, Katie Seaborn, Deborah I. Fels
      Pages 69-85
  3. Theoretical Foundations

  4. Method and Practice

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 241-241
    2. John B. Cassel, Susan V. Cousineau
      Pages 293-318

About this book


This book presents emerging work in the co-evolving fields of design-led systemics, referred to as systemic design to distinguish it from the engineering and hard science epistemologies of system design or systems engineering. There are significant societal forces and organizational demands impelling the requirement for “better means of change” through integrated design practices of systems and services. Here we call on advanced design to lead programs of strategic scale and higher complexity (e.g., social policy, healthcare, education, urbanization) while adapting systems thinking methods, creatively pushing the boundaries beyond the popular modes of systems dynamics and soft systems. Systemic design is distinguished by its scale, social complexity and integration – it is concerned with higher-order systems that that entail multiple subsystems. By integrating systems thinking and its methods, systemic design brings human-centred design to complex, multi-stakeholder service systems. As designers engage with ever more complex problem areas, it is necessary to draw on a basis other than individual creativity and contemporary “design thinking” methods. Systems theories can co-evolve with a new school of design theory to resolve informed action on today’s highly resilient complex problems and can deal effectively with demanding, contested and high-stakes challenges.


Design Theory Social Systems Systemic Design Systems Thinking Wicked Problems

Editors and affiliations

  • Peter Jones
    • 1
  • Kyoichi Kijima
    • 2
  1. 1.OCAD UniversityTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Graduate School of Decision Science and TechnologyTokyo Institute of TechnologyMeguroJapan

Bibliographic information