A system is an interconnected set of elements that is coherently organized in a way that achieves something.
If you look at that definition closely for a minute, you can see that a system must consist of three kinds of things: elements, interconnections, and a function or purpose.
- A system is more than the sum of its parts.
- Many of the interconnections in systems operate through the flow of information.
- The least obvious part of the system, its function or purpose, is often the most crucial determinant of the system’s behavior.
- System structure is the source of system behavior. System behavior reveals itself as a series of events over time.
most of the challenges that really matter involve systems, for example, energy and global warming; water, food, and population; and health and social justice.