Creating system maps by understanding people’s stories

Bruno Martins Rizardi and Daniela Gomes Metello

Working through a wicked problem is a great challenge for public managers all over the world. At Gnova, Brazil’s federal government innovation lab, we decided to develop an approach that brings together design, system thinking and behavioural sciences to approach complex issues such as vicious cycles of extreme poverty in rural areas of Brazil.

The project is still ongoing, but there are few good indications that lead us to think that individual stories can be transformed into systems maps. Our main goal is to evaluate the behaviour leverages of these systems to formulate and propose effective public policies that change the lives of the people in those stories. In this article, we explore what is called the bottom-up-down approach, a way to understand how individual behaviours compose or even emerge in systemic behaviour.

Keywords: behaviour, storytelling, system map, public policy


RSD proceedings are licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. This permits anyone to copy and redistribute the material in any medium or form according to the licence terms.


Author(s) (20XX). Article title. In Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design (RSDX) 20XX Symposium. City, Country, Month X-X, 20XX.

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