Posted by: Xhyra Graf | 19 January 2007

Model 21

The System Effects Model

Systems effects are a kind of inverse creativity. Humans plan some intervention to change or improve a system and instead of what they planned, unwanted side-effects dominate their planned for effects. Such system effects are highly irritating and unwanted. Their existence attests to how little humans understand of the world they intervene in. They are the creativity of the world overpowering the creativity of people (Jervis, 1997; Richards, 1999; Sawyer, 1997; Axelrod, 1994; Barthes, 1983; Bonabeau, 1999; Epstein and Axtell, 1998). Indeed, not a few “discoveries, of humans, have come from observing unwanted side-effects and finding a use for them. As such, they are genuine creativity and people have begun serious cataloging of their types and causes in the hope of someday deliberately generating the types of them that they want, to change systems in designed ways. Similarly, the ways that implementations fail are myriad and arise as unexpected sideeffects.

Careful cataloguing of them along with other system effects produces dozens of individual items–situational creativity types.

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