Books : reviews

Russell L. Ackoff, Herbert J. Addison, Andrew Carey.
Systems Thinking for Curious Managers: with 40 new management f-laws.
Triarchy Press. 2010

This gem of a book introduces the extraordinary world of Systems Thinking and its “Dean”, Russell Ackoff, to curious and enquiring managers, teachers, business people – anyone, anywhere who works in an organization.

Finished just before Professor Ackoff’s death late in 2009, it opens the door to a joined up way of thinking about things that has profoundly influenced thinkers and doers in the fields of business, politics, economics, ecology, biology and psychology.

In business and academia, in the public sector and in the search for solutions to the environmental problems we face, both Systems Thinking and Russell Ackoff are being talked about more than ever.

This timely book presents 40 more of Russ Ackoff’s famously witty and incisive f-Laws (or flaws) of business – following on from his 2007 collection Management f-Laws. All those in this collection are new and previously unpublished. Andrew Carey’s extended introduction ties these f-Laws into the rest of Ackoff’s work and gives the reader new to Systems Thinking a guide to the implications of Systems Thinking for organizations and managers.