When the system is able to control itself. May use feedback received to match against goals and objectives. If any discrepancies detected, system takes corrective action by changing outputs which, as a result, change the inputs. This occurs on a continuous basis depending on the feedback. Control is over-arching term that includes feedback. Control loop sometimes talked about rather than […]


Feedback is an important Systems Thinking concept, it allows systems to keep a balance, or equilibrium. A system produces output in the environment which have an affect on the environment. This effects are reported back to the system by inputs. This feedback mechanism allows the system to manage itself so it can stay in a state of dynamic equilibrium. The […]

Input & Output

Open system takes inputs from environment and produces outputs to same environment. Example: manufacturing organisation takes inputs such as human resources, physical resources, capital and technology. Output would be such as a product.


System has a purposeĀ – to achieve this, system will have goals and objectives. Goals and objectives are specific & achievable outcomes against which the system can be measured. Examples include sales figures, market share and profit margins.  

Systems Concepts introduction

This Systems Concepts unit introduces further concepts supporting identification and creation of systems and definition of their purpose as well as an introduction to complex systems. Concepts, terms and components are properties of all systems: Goals/Objectives Input/Ouput Feedback Control Boundary Environment Sub System Hierarchy Emergence Dynamic Equilibrium Perspective/Stakeholders Transformation If situation cannot be viewed with above concepts and components, it […]