The existence of a set of intermittent or permanent interrelations between a number of interconnected components.
The concept was introduced by W. WEAVER. It "involves systems with large number of components, rich interactions among the components, and some degree of nondeterminism. They are typical in life, behavioral, social and environmental sciences, as well as in applied fields such as modern technology or medicine" (G. KLIR, 1993, p.35).
Organization is closely related to complexity. In K. DENBIGH's words: "An organized system consists of parts and sub-parts and these are interconnected" (1975, p.85). This author stresses moreover that, "as one cannot speak about something being organized without at one raising the issue, what is it organized for?" (Ibid), organized complexity implies the idea of function or process.
According to A. RAPOPORT :"Mathematically an "organized complexity " can be viewed as a set of objects or events whose description involves many variables, among which there are strong mutual interdependencies, so that the resulting system of equations cannot be solved "piece-meal", as in the case of classical celestial mechanics, where perturbations can be imposed on two-body problems" (1966, p.4).
E. LASZLO writes: "… such relations cannot be treated with mathematical rigor with the classical concepts (which soon encounter their limitations in the "three body problem")" (1992, p.5).
The holistic approach has been one of the first new methodological proposal to the study of organized complexity.
It became however rapidly confronted with tricky problems of "inverted reductionism " and the resulting useless controversies between "generalists" and "specialists".
The need to bridge this chasm has led to practically all the general systems models developed to date and to the appearance of new mathematical tools as for example graphs, catastrophe theory, deterministic chaos, etc.
- 1) General information
- 2) Methodology or model
- 3) Epistemology, ontology and semantics
- 4) Human sciences
- 5) Discipline oriented
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Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science (2020). Title of the entry. In Charles François (Ed.), International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics (2). Retrieved from www.systemspedia.org/[full/url]
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