Systems Thinking and Personality Types LO22597

Roy Benford (
Thu, 9 Sep 1999 10:46:02 +0100

Replying to LO22570 --

> I for one would like to hear more about what difference the vocabulary of
> 'soft systems thinking' makes to the study of personality, in your view.

In my vocabulary, there are three types of system thinking, 'hard systems
thinking', 'soft systems thinking', and 'critical systems thinking'. Each
is based within a different paradigm. In terms of Burrell and Morgan's
four sociological paradigms, they correspond approximately to
'Functionalist', 'Interpretive', and 'Radical Humanist / Radical

Relationship to personality type? Well I suspect that the Jungian, or any
other, character categorisation system could be scattered across B&M's
paradigms, or for that matter, any other paradimatic framework. An
interesting point is that a practitioner based within the functionalist
paradigm will bring that to their application of 'soft systems thinking'
and give it a 'hard systems thinking' flavour. Afterall it was people
based in the interpretive paradigm that took 'hard systems thinking' and
gave it a soft flavour.

Roy Benford
Fulmer, UK


"Roy Benford" <>

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