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Making Alphabet Soup: Blending VSM, STS and TQM

Allenna Leonard (Director, Team Syntegrity, Inc., Toronto, Canada)


ISSN: 0368-492X

Article publication date: 1 April 1992



Many opportunities exist to combine different models in the cybernetics and systems field to assist groups and organizations to be more effective. Brings together three models, the Viable System Model, Socio‐Technical Systems and Total Quality Management, to consider their potential usefulness in an integrated approach. It examines their common roots in the concepts of systems and environments, communications, the modelling process, variety, feedback and autonomy. Their differences of emphasis and some limitations are also noted. A suggestion is made regarding how they might be brought together in a single application using the Viable Systems Model as one of three possible frameworks. Other systems models and where they might fit within this framework are also noted. Finally, co‐operation and experiment among practitioners of different models is urged as having great potential benefit to client organizations.



Leonard, A. (1992), "Making Alphabet Soup: Blending VSM, STS and TQM", Kybernetes, Vol. 21 No. 4, pp. 33-42.




Copyright © 1992, MCB UP Limited

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