International Journal of Applied Science and Technology

ISSN 2221-0997 (Print), 2221-1004 (Online) 10.30845/ijast

Living Societal Systems Meaning and Multiple Values for Quality of Life
Harry Donkers

In our world we are faced with major problems and crises, such as climate and food crisis, poverty, AIDS, etc. In the paper we argue that the effects of the problems and crises can be mitigated or solved with less harm when we learn more from living natural systems, realizing that the phenomenon of consciousness is a fundamental characteristic that man distinguishes from the world of animals and plants. We develop a new Living societal systems model starting from the elements of living natural systems, such as source of energy, reproduction, biodiversity and evolution, and translating them into elements of living societal systems. Core of the findings is located in addressing two main factors. The first one is taking responsibility for a meaningful life for which in this paper we develop the concept of ‘reciprocal solidarism’. The second one is the concern for reproductive cycles of multiple values for which in this paper we develop the concept of ‘creative moderation’. These two factors can be seen as forms of the bipolar development lines competition versus cooperation and renewal versus control, respectively. These developmental lines fit into an ontological coordinate system that serves as a tool for further analysis of living societal systems. To work this out we develop a classification of multiple values and discuss the autopoietic pattern of living societal systems. We look at innovation, which we interpret as the analogue of evolution, pay attention to the structure and process of living societal systems and discuss the role of boundaries and levels. Though living societal systems are in principle self-organizing, in practice we see a lot of phenomena that interfere with self-organizing systems. Therefore it is necessary to guide or manage the developments, based on a thorough measurement. This societal systems management consists of five management categories: management of multiple values, multiple values cycles’ management, process management, structural innovation management and multi-level management. We present some examples. It is not necessary in living societal systems to build systems from scratch on. Well-chosen targets or lever points suffice. The paper ends with conclusions and an indication for further work.

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