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date: 28 June 2022

Complex Systems Science and Social Worklocked

Complex Systems Science and Social Worklocked

  • John HalloranJohn HalloranLewis University
  •  and Fred WulczynFred WulczynChapin Hall at the University of Chicago

Summary

Extending social work’s familiarity with the metaphorical use of systems concepts, formal systems science enables macro social workers pathways of understanding and description of system-level behavior. Systems, in a formal sense, are coherently organized and interconnected sets of parts that, when operating together, perform a function. The behaviors of complex systems are not reducible to the behavior of individual components, and behaviors of systems are unique to the system as a whole. We introduce a formal approach to systems thinking, provide an overview of central concepts in complex systems analysis, and conclude with an in-depth example of an agent-based simulation model, which puts complex systems thinking into action in a research and practice context.

Subjects

  • Administration and Management
  • Macro Practice
  • Policy and Advocacy

Updated in this version

Content and references updated for the Encyclopedia of Macro Social Work.

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