Systems Thinking Ontario – 2018-11-21 – Wicked Problems, Systems Approach, Pattern Language

Source: Systems Thinking Ontario – 2018-11-21

November 21 is the 62nd monthly meeting for Systems Thinking Ontario. The registration is on Eventbrite.

Wicked Problems, Systems Approach, Pattern Language

At U.C. Berkeley in the 1960s, Horst Rittel (originator of “Wicked Problems“), C. West Churchman (luminary in the Systems Approach) and Christopher Alexander (leading Pattern Language) led graduate programs. Doctoral students flowed across departments to their seminars and workshops.

Many of those alumni are the core of the PUARL (Portland Urban Architecture Research Laboratory) and Purplsoc (Pursuit of Pattern Languages for Social Change) communities.

David Ing led workshops at the Purplsoc conference in October 2017, and PUARL conference in October 2018, with the aim of regenerating some of the ties that were lost in the 1970s.

Come participate in an informal, unrehearsed conversation about commonalities and distinctions across these three bodies of work. In the interest of open communications, the conversation will not be recorded, and the Chatham House rule will apply.

David Ing is a systems change researcher, and one of the cofounders of Systems Thinking Ontario. He is a past-president (2011-2012) of the International Society for the Systems Sciences.


Suggested pre-reading:

David will refer to the following artifacts:


Time Activity Role(s)
6:30 Self-introductions  (15 seconds each)
  • Introduce yourself and briefly tell us about interests, experiences or affiliations related to systems thinking.
  • How did learn about this Systems Thinking Ontario session?
Convenor:  David Ing
6:45 Stepping through the readings  (as entry points)
  • What’s going on in these workshops?
Reviewer: All attendees
8:10 Process reflection
  • What went well in this meeting?
  • What should be discuss in the next meeting?
Suggestions welcomed
8:15 Adjourn
  • Optionally, join other attendees to continue discussion over dinner and/or drinks at a nearby restaurant
  • We prefer a venue that is quiet, reasonably priced and spacious enough for our continued conversations.
  • Typically, when we meet at 100 McCaul, we walk up to Baldwin Street; when we meet at 205 Richmond, we walk up to Queen Street West.
No host