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Building a Systemic Designer’s Library: Borrowing from multiple disciplines to develop systemic design mental models

Format: Papers, RSD11, Topic: Economics & Orgs, Topic: Methods & Methodology

Beatrice V. Luna

Design & development practitioner—products, services, organisations

Adding to the systemic design toolkit by borrowing concepts from physics, medicine, and economics.

This presentation expands on the use of metaphors and analogical thinking in systemic design by offering a work-in-progress catalogue of mental models drawing concepts from multiple disciplines to support systemic design approaches. It first explores how analogical thinking supports systemic design and then catalogues how practitioners have previously used metaphors as tools that facilitate design activities (from products to services and systemic interventions). Adding to this catalogue, I present mental models using analogues drawn from different disciplines and show how doing so can offer new perspectives, mental models, and techniques designers can adapt to strengthen their practice. I present sample mental models drawn from physics, medicine, and economics and show the possibilities these offer to systemic design activities, such as framing problem spaces, generating objective ideas, and facilitating change.

KEYWORDS: systemic design, transdisciplinary, metaphors, analogical thinking, analogies

RSD TOPIC(S): Methods & Methodology

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Citation Data

Author(s): Beatrice V. Luna
Year: 2022
Title: Building a Systemic Designer’s Library: Borrowing from multiple disciplines to develop systemic design mental models
Published in: Proceedings of Relating Systems Thinking and Design
Volume: RSD11
Article No.: 097
URL: https://rsdsymposium.org/systems-doing-using-multidisciplinary-lenses-to-bridge-systems-thinking-design-and-development
Host: University of Brighton
Location: Brighton, UK
Symposium Dates: October 3–16, 2022
First published: 23 September 2022
Last update: 30 April 2023
Publisher Identification: ISSN 2371-8404
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