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The Earth in Perspective

For the first time in history, we are able to see the whole Earth continually in a perspective from space.  This “God’s eye view” vividly shows that we live on one world. We have one ocean and one atmosphere. The boundary lines and labels we put on maps and globes are entirely artificial; the natural processes that support life on our Earth are all interdependent and interact in complex ways. We can only truly understand and appreciate our world as a whole, recognizing it as an unfathomably rich and complex set of systems of systems Read More

Featured Essays

  • The Boeing 737 MAX: A Case Study of Systems Decisions and Their Consequences

    Revised 3 July 2019

    The Boeing 737 MAX program provides an illustrative example of how incentives can shape the behavior of complex technical and economic systems decisions that result in serious problems.  After more than a century as one of the most respected companies in the entire field of aviation, Boeing’s credibility as the builder of safe commercial aircraft has come into doubt. How the 737 MAX will regain the confidence of regulatory agencies, airline customers, and the flying public is an open question at this time.  This article describes the path that brought things to this point  Read More.

  • Societal Implications of Artificial Intelligence

    Adapted from a five-session class given at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute (OLLI) at Southern Oregon University, Ashland, Oregon in March 2019

    This paper focuses on how artificial intelligence is going to have major societal implications and what actions need to be taken to avoid and mitigate negative effects of its applications. Read More

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A Systems Perspective on Unintended Consequences of Abortion Bans

Policy decisions frequently have negative outcomes that are not anticipated when legislators try to force a change in social mores. Recently a number of conservative […]
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