Customer Review

4.0 out of 5 stars Useful and interesting, 23 Nov 2011
This review is from: The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization: First edition (Century business) (Paperback)
The book is a nice introduction of systems thinking, but perhaps it would have benefitted from explaining the nature of systems theory in terms of differential equations. Not that any equations themselves had to be used, but the idea of how levels, flows and feedback play part in the models and how the models relate to the empirical world could perhaps have made the book feel more like science and less like indoctrination. The discussion of mental models was particularly fluffy, I felt. If we were talking about mathematical models, I could see his point, but taking any sort of scenario as a model causes problems if we want to challenge it in order to learn from experience. On the other hand, comparing the systems theory with game theory, these views clearly represent diametrically different ways to understand the world, and I think Senge is quite good at explaining the spiritual side of systems theory, but it would have improved matter if he had explained in more detail how the systems view contrasts with the more typical game theoretical view of business.
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