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Book : The Systems Thinking Playbook (2008)

The Systems Thinking Playbook

Publisher:The Sustainability Institute

Author(s):Booth Sweeney, LindaMeadows, Dennis

Published: 2008 • ISBN: 0966612779 • 252 pages • Delivery Format: Hard Copy - Ring Bound

Available from: Amazon (DE)Amazon (UK)Amazon (US)


The Systems Thinking Playbook is a lively resource for the promotion of Systems Thinking.

Packed full of hands-on games and activities that stretch the mind and alter pre-conceived perceptions, The Systems Thinking Playbook is an ideal way to teach people to “go wide” and see underlying cause and effect relationships and recognize the delays inherent in any complex systems. The Playbook also abounds with practical advice for using the exercises to maximize the learning experience.

It has been used widely by schools, government agencies (both in the US and Internationally) and corporations to train managers to “think beyond the loop.”

Book with companion DVD!

This book has become a favorite of K-12 teachers, university faculty, and corporate consultants. It provides short gaming exercises that illustrate the subtleties of systems thinking. The companion DVD shows the authors introducing and running each of the 30 games.

The 30 games are classified by these areas of learning – Mental Models, Team Learning, Systems Thinking, Shared Vision and Personal Mastery. Each description clearly explains when, how, and why the game is useful. There are explicit instructions for debriefing each exercise as well as a list of all required materials. A summary matrix has been added for a quick glance at all 30 games. When you are in a hurry to find just the right initiative for some part of your course, the matrix will help you find it.

Linda Booth Sweeney and Dennis Meadows both have many years of experience working with adults. This book reflects their insights. Every game works well and provokes a deep variety of new insights about paradigms, system boundaries, causal loop diagrams, reference modes, and leverage points. Each of the 30 exercises here was tested and refined many times until it became a reliable source of learning. Some of the games are adapted from classics of the outdoor education field. Others are completely new. But all of them complement readings and lectures to help participants understand intuitively the principles of systems thinking.

The book includes many quotations from practitioner, who share their insights about the relevance of specific exercises. There are also citations for related reading


Review this book - The Systems Thinking Playbook

Book : Thinking in Systems: A Primer (2008)

Thinking in Systems: A Primer

Categories: Systems Thinking

Tags: bookmeadowssystems thinking

Publisher:Chelsea Green • Earthscan

Author(s):Meadows, Donella

Published: 2008 • ISBN: 1603580557 • 240 pages • Delivery Format: Hard Copy - Paperback

Available from: Amazon (DE)Amazon (UK)Amazon (US)


From the Sustainability Institute:

Thinking in Systems is required reading for anyone hoping to run a successful company, community, or country. Learning how to think in systems is now part of change-agent literacy. And this is the best book of its kind.”—Hunter Lovins, founder and President of Natural Capital Solutions and coauthor of Natural Capitalism: Creating the Next Industrial Revolution

In the years following her role as the lead author of the international bestseller, Limits to Growth—the first book to show the consequences of unchecked growth on a finite planet— Donella Meadows remained a pioneer of environmental and social analysis until her untimely death in 2001.

Meadows’ newly released manuscript, Thinking in Systems, is a concise and crucial book offering insight for problem solving on scales ranging from the personal to the global. Edited by the Sustainability Institute’s Diana Wright, this essential primer brings systems thinking out of the realm of computers and equations and into the tangible world, showing readers how to develop the systems-thinking skills that thought leaders across the globe consider critical for 21st-century life.

Some of the biggest problems facing the world—war, hunger, poverty, and environmental degradation—are essentially system failures. They cannot be solved by fixing one piece in isolation from the others, because even seemingly minor details have enormous power to undermine the best efforts of too-narrow thinking.

While readers will learn the conceptual tools and methods of systems thinking, the heart of the book is grander than methodology. Donella Meadows was known as much for nurturing positive outcomes as she was for delving into the science behind global dilemmas. She reminds readers to pay attention to what is important, not just what is quantifiable, to stay humble, and to stay a learner.

In a world growing ever more complicated, crowded, and interdependent, Thinking in Systems helps readers avoid confusion and helplessness, the first step toward finding proactive and effective solutions.


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Review this book - Thinking in Systems: A Primer

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