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Systems Thinking Alliance

LINK Launch: Navigating Your Systemic Wisdom Journey

Issue # 1
7 Min Read

In This Issue

Education today is often siloed, ignoring the interconnectedness of knowledge and diverse intelligences. We focus on memorization over comprehension, neglecting the power of visual intelligence to see the bigger picture. Source: Creative Systems Thinking

Welcome To Our First Newsletter

We are thrilled to kick off our inaugural newsletter, a brand new initiative from the Systems Thinking Alliance! As we pen down these first lines, we can hardly contain the excitement and energy that’s buzzing through our team. We have embarked on this journey with one resolute mission: to empower you, our cherished community, with the transformative tools and insights of systems thinking.

We’re at the start of an exhilarating journey, and we couldn’t be more excited to have you on board. Thank you for joining us, and here’s to exploring the boundless potential of systems thinking together!


Mastering the Art of Perception with Gestalt

Have you ever wondered why we often see patterns, shapes, or forms instead of individual elements? This is the magic of Gestalt in action. The term ‘Gestalt’, stemming from German roots, translates to ‘shape’ or ‘form’. But it’s not just about shapes and forms; it’s about how these parts interconnect to create a more meaningful whole. Gestalt is a lens through which we view and understand the world around us.

Gestalt is a foundational principle in psychology, emphasizing that our minds tend to see patterns or wholes as more significant than individual elements. Picture this: When you look at a constellation, do you see separate stars or an integrated pattern? Most of us perceive a unified arrangement, like The Big Dipper or Orion’s Belt. This tendency to see “the whole” instead of isolated points is guided by the Gestalt laws of perceptual organization. But the reach of Gestalt extends far beyond psychology, permeating fields such as philosophy, arts, and sciences.

The philosopher Christian von Ehrenfels was instrumental in shaping our understanding of Gestalt. He described Gestalt as an irreducible perceptual pattern, leading to the well-known phrase, “The whole is more than the sum of its parts”. This concept has since formed a cornerstone in systems thinking.

For leaders, understanding Gestalt can be a powerful tool. Let’s consider a company as an example. Each department – be it sales, marketing, HR, or finance – functions independently, but the success of the company depends on how these departments work together. The company’s achievements are not just a collection of individual departments’ successes but a result of their collective synergy. This is Gestalt in action!

So, the next time you’re dealing with a complex problem, remember the Gestalt principle. Look at the bigger picture, the patterns, and the interconnections. You may find that the solution lies not in the individual parts, but in their collective orchestration.



Groupthink is a term that was coined by social psychologist Irving Janis in 1972, and it describes the phenomenon that occurs when individuals within the same group, such as a workplace team or school club, put their desire to maintain unity and reduce conflicts ahead of other considerations. Janis originally defined groupthink as “A mode of thinking that people engage in when they are deeply involved in a cohesive in-group, when the members’ strivings for unanimity override their motivation to realistically appraise alternative courses of action.” (I. Janis,1991)

Group think is often identified by an inability to explore alternative options, irrational behavior, poor decision-making, acting without considering facts and evidence, or resisting criticism. While it can be hard for an outsider to spot the signs of groupthink in action, understanding how to recognize these behaviors is key for preventing them from taking hold.


Profound Quote from Systems Thinker

“We need a new kind of thinking that reconnects that which is disjointed and compartmentalised, that respects the diversity as it recognises unity, and that tries to discern interdependencies. We need radical thinking and an organisational or subsistence thinking.” Edgar Morin

Our featured quote this month comes from the esteemed sociologist and philosopher, Edgar Morin. Morin’s work has consistently emphasized the importance of holistic and interconnected thinking in a world often viewed in fragments. His quote encapsulates the essence of systems thinking, urging us to reconnect the disjointed, appreciate diversity within unity, and discern the intricate interdependencies that form the fabric of our world.


Help us Shape the Training Roadmap

We are getting ready to launch our new website soon, and we are also working hard to develop our training roadmap. Your feedback is essential in this process to help us understand what you need and align our offerings accordingly. We have created a brief survey to guide us in planning both in-person and virtual instructor-led courses and to ensure that they are scheduled in suitable locations and time zones.

The survey consists of only four questions, and it will take no more than two minutes of your time. Your input is crucial in shaping a better SystemsThinking Alliance, so please take a moment to share your thoughts with us.

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