Title: Environmental scanning implications in the governance of complex systems

Authors: Dale Baugh

Addresses: Old Dominion University, 116 Commodore Lane, Smithfield, VA 23430, USA

Abstract: Complex systems are comprised of subsystems that operate together for a common goal that is not achievable by each subsystem. Governance of complex systems is defined as design, execution, and evolution of the metasystem functions necessary to provide control, communication, coordination, and integration of a complex system. A key governance evolution function is the ability to scan the environment for information that guides the system's operations for goal achieving in the future. While experiencing a significant increase in environmental complexity, the governance function must be capable of increasing its ability to achieve a future state. This paper provides a perspective, grounded in systems theory principles, on the environmental scanning function. This perspective suggests an approach to improving complex system viability.

Keywords: viability; environmental scanning; systems theory; requisite variety; managerial cybernetics; system governance; viable systems model; VSM; complex systems; system of systems engineering; SoSE.

DOI: 10.1504/IJSSE.2015.068812

International Journal of System of Systems Engineering, 2015 Vol.6 No.1/2, pp.127 - 143

Received: 01 Oct 2014
Accepted: 14 Nov 2014

Published online: 13 Apr 2015 *

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