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Working Whole Systems (ISBN 1-85717-233-7) Working Whole Systems is an approach to organisational development that views groups of people who come together around a shared purpose as living systems.

It recognises that the way in which living systems adapt and evolve is determined by the way interconnected parts relate to each other, as well as the way individual parts behave. Whole system working shifts the focus of attention from parts to 'the whole' and offers a set of practical working methods to influence the way 'the parts' connect and behave towards each other.

At its simplest level it is a way of thinking about and designing meetings that help people to express their different experiences, to identify possibilities for action and to commit to change.

First edition 1999  Second Edition 2005




'I was delighted to read this book. It is simply the most thoughtful, comprehensible, and accessible work I have yet seen on working with the whole system' - Margaret J. Wheatley

Extracts from the chapters of the book:

A brief summary of what we mean by whole system working in theory and practice.

The metaphor of living systems


A story that gives a flavour of what it is like to work from a whole system perspective.



Commonly asked questions about the whole system approach

The difference between whole system events and large group meetings

Where to begin?

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