World Congress of the Systems Sciences, at Toronto, July 16-19, 2000
Plenary Session, Keynote Speech, July 17, 2000, 8:50 a.m.
These participant's notes were created in real-time during the meeting, based on the speaker's presentation(s) and comments from the audience. These should not be
viewed as official transcripts of the meeting, but only as an interpretation by a single individual. Lapses, grammatical errors, and typing mistakes may not have been corrected. Questions about
content should be directed to the originator. These notes have been contributed by David Ing (email@example.com) at the IBM Advanced Business Institute ( http://www.ibm.com/abi
Anatol Rapoport, Professor Emeritus, Department of Psychology, University of Toronto.
When he was a freshmen, Rapoport's physics professor.
A course was described as non-mathematical.
He started at the top left, and spent 50 minutes
"You don't see any integrals, do you?"
Integrals are a symbol -- whole out of parts.
Was the logo of SGSR
The last of the four founders of SGSR
Will discuss the themes from each of the four founders.
von Bertalanffy: Equifinality
Same end state, despite different beginning states
Against vitalist, because of purpose
Matrix: Cells ... societies vs. structure, behavior and evolution (being, acting, becoming)
Science as a cathedral, instead of a pile of bricks.
Boulding: 9 levels of systems
1. Structure, no dynamics
2. Clockwork, rigid dynamics insensitive to inputs
4. Open, self-mantaining
5. Genetic, societal
7. Human -- self awareness, reflection, communication by symbolic language
8. Human social organization
9. (As a devout Christian) transcedental system -- it is a sad day when no one is allowed to ask questions to which there are no answers.
Levels of systems
Would substitute at the 9th level: Geosphere, ... noosphere
Integration by generalization inspired by the integral sign.
Integration of society
... tribes ....
Extension or risk of biosphere?
Two opposite processes:
Observe the same dichotomy in the meaning of globalization:
Can view as village or as a market.
Apparently less lethal version that makes it acceptable.
Free movement of capital driven by interests of corporation
Cheap labour, locks politics.
Conclusion: insight from Boulding
Three modes of social control:
Threat: by fear
Trade: Modern liberal democracy, immediate self interest
Love: Fully cooperative society, nurturing, e.g taking care of children
Three levels of morality
Prostitution more more than rape, marriage as more moral than prostitition.
Later, Boulding replaced love by integration, to make it more acceptable in academic discourse
Some content on this website may be subject to prior copyrights.
Please contact the author(s) prior to reproduction or further distribution of the materials.