Open Meeting - Winter 2014/15

£10 - pay via eventbrite please
Event date: 
Monday, January 26, 2015
London, BT Centre (please book for full joining instructions)
(All Welcome)
Event Details: 
An open meeting where a series of presentations of general interest regarding systems practice will be given - this will include 'craft' and active sessions, as well as introductions to theory.
There is a fee of £10 for all attendees for these meetings (plus a small eventbrite fee), and booking is required via
If you do not wish to pay through eventbrite, it is still possible to book via and pay on the door.
Session: Steve Morlidge - systems and performance management
In, October Steve set out a framework fro mapping systems concepts, principles and models to real life applications of the sort that interest SCIO members. In this presentation, Steve will describe an example of the explicit use of a systems model (the VSM) to critique, diagnose and design interventions in a specific domain - the management of financial performance.

Steve Morlidge is an ex Unilever ‘lifer’ now working as an independent researcher and author in systems specialising in the application of the VSM to the job of financial management.

Steve is a published author of 'Future Ready: Master Businsess Forecating'


Session: George Rzevski - managing complexity in organisations
Managing the complexity of the internet-based global market. During the last 20 years, the complexity of the Internet-based global market has increased to such extend that many conventional resource-allocation systems have difficulty in coping with the increased demand/supply dynamics.
The talk will focus on new methods for managing complexity of the Internet-based global market based on concepts of adaptability and real-time decision making. Conceptual considerations will be illustrated by practical examples of applications. 
George will also outline his personal view on how newly developing Complex Systems Science fits into well-established Systems Thinking.
George Rzevski is Emeritus Professor, Complexity Science and Design Group at The Open University, Milton Keynes, UK. Until 1999 George was a full-time academic and Professor in Department of Design and Innovation at The Open University, Milton Keynes, where he was Director, Centre for the Design of Intelligent Systems. His Centre was well funded by grants from government and industry and his department was rated 5 out of 5 in the two UK Research Assessment Exercises. 
As a tribute to his successful research career, the university recently established “The George Rzevski Complexity Laboratory”. 
Upon retiring as full-time professor, George founded a number of companies in the UK, USA, Germany and Russia, specialising in developing and marketing large-scale multi-agent software systems for applications such as: adaptive logistics, real-time supply chain scheduling, real-time project management, dynamic data mining, adaptive semantic processing and engineering design. In March this year, he published, with his close collaborator, Petr Skobelev, a book summarising 15 years of their entrepreneurial activities entitled Managing Complexity (WIT Press, Southampton, UK, and Boston, USA). The book contains conceptual foundations of complexity science illustrated by a large number of solutions to complex commercial problems.


Session: Richard Selwyn - public sector commissioning - systems thinking and systems leadership under the radar


The public sector is beginning to apply systems thinking to society’s wicked issues.  Through the relatively new profession of commissioning, an emerging culture and set of tools is pushing the boundaries of leadership, service development and the role of the state.  A revolution is afoot.
During the discussion we’ll explore the application of systems thinking to local children’s services – What are we here to deliver?  How do we refocus the system?  And, if budgets are cut by 50%, what does systems thinking tell us about the solutions?
Richard Selwyn is Assistant Director of Commissioning for Suffolk County Council and has worked on many service transformations and efficiency programmes across the public sector.  His book Outcomes & Efficiencies is available for free download from Amazon at
Session: Chris Potts - how market ecosystems demand outside-in enterprise architecture
Markets are the ecosystems in which enterprises thrive, survive, and periodically die. A successful enterprise understands its value in the context of the wider environment, and can constantly redesign itself as the ecosystem evolves.
Understanding context when designing or re‐designing a structure is one of the fundamental capabilities of any architect. Whether their medium is buildings, landscapes, ships or enterprises, the value of an architect is in the relationship between each structure they design and the wider systems in which that structure exists.
For many enterprise architects, especially those who are employees of the enterprise, it is a significant challenge to understand how the entity appears and performs from the perspective of the market. They are used to working ‘inside‐out’. Analogously, it’s like trying to appreciate and re‐design how a building appears from across the road while sitting in one of its rooms. This inside‐out perspective risks designing an enterprise that is a projection of its internal structure, creating an incoherent and low‐value entity from an outsider’s perspective.
In the era of market consumerisation, and ‘cloud‐based’ delivery models, the ability of enterprise architects to work ‘outside‐in’ is now vital. What does this mean in practice, for enterprise architects themselves and for the people they work with and influence? Can they rely on the same motivations, mindsets and models that have underpinned their work in the past? How much do enterprise architects need to invest in redesigning their own value proposition and practices, to survive and thrive in an ‘outside‐in world’?
Chris is a mentor in strategies for enterprise investment, working with executives, enterprise architects and project portfolio managers. He is also an entertaining and provocative speaker, as well as the author of the world’s only trilogy of business novels – the FruITion Trilogy. Chris works with people all around the wold, in diverse cultures, industries and enterprises. Find out more at
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