Total Systems Intervention in Strategic Planning

  • R. Keith Ellis
  • Andrew J. Humphreys


This paper is based upon the use of systems thinking in a large public sector service organisation. Specifically, the work involved the application of Total Systems Intervention (TSI) (Flood and Jackson, 1991), to develop “...a strategic planning process within... North Yorkshire Police (NYP).” (Humphreys, 1994:1). Both authors’ were involved in the project which commenced with the expressed need of NYP to ‘think long-term’ at the top level of the organisation, and ended with a strategic planning process which is now in use within NYP. During our application of TSI several issues became apparent which not only contributed to our own understanding but, which may assist with the future development of the methodology.


Strategic Planning Problem Situation Stakeholder Interview Viable System Model Strategic Planning Process 
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  1. Ackoff, R.L., 1981, “Creating the Corporate Future”, John Wiley & Sons, New York.Google Scholar
  2. Beer, Stafford., 1985, “Diagnosing the System for Organisations”, John Wiley & Sons, Chichester.Google Scholar
  3. Flood, R.L., and Jackson, M.C., 1991, “Creative Problem Solving: Total Systems Intervention”, John Wiley & Sons, Chichester.Google Scholar
  4. Humphreys, A.J., 1994, “Total Systems Intervention: Developing a Strategic Planning Process in North Yorkshire Police”, unpublished M.A. Dissertation, University of Hull, Hull, UK.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Keith Ellis
    • 1
  • Andrew J. Humphreys
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Computing and Information SystemsUniversity of HumbersideHullUK
  2. 2.North Yorkshire Police, Newby Wiske HallNewby Wiske, Northallerton, North YorkshireUK

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