World of Social Systems

  • Print Article |
  • Send to a Friend |
  • |
  • Add to Google |

In our daily life we even do not notice us as parts of the different social systems, perhaps the most complex human creations ever. However, these systems very much determine of what we say or do or even think. This knowledge and understanding of the underlying principles could be a source of enormous power. Therefore, as follows we will make the first introduction to the world of social systems.

What do I mean under the term "social system"? Well, in general I'd define it as a set of rules according to which people operate together for a particular purpose, as well as all the framework structures, institutions and organisations, procedures and governance principles that enable, ensure and regulate the implementation of these rules.

We all have heard about the systems like education system, financial system, court system, social security system etc. All of them consist or may consist of several sub-systems customised to specific parts of society or focused to a specific area of life. Each of them may also be a part of a bigger system (just as it is the case by European countries, who have delegated part of their functions to the EU). Today, different systems and sub-systems are closely connected with each other and functioning of one system depends on functioning of another.

The ultimate goal of each social system should be to serve the humanity. For example:
* education system should assist people in being valuable members of the society;
* financial system should ensure well functioning cash circulation and presence of the money as reliable mean of payment;
* social security system should ensure at least minimal social security to the ones who are not able to take care for themselves.

In that sense there is nothing bad in social systems. However, the term "system" is often perceived as something negative - and not groundlessly. The issue is that the bigger and the more important a system is, the more easily it tends to get corrupted. Instead of serving the humanity, it too frequently seems to be used as a way for forcing people to work for the good of few.

Now one might ask: "Couldn't we live without the systems?" Perhaps, although rather hard to imagine, as most of us haven't ever seen a different world. Definitely, there would be some necessary preconditions like:
* no scarcity of resources;
* everyone perceiving abundance;
* sustainability in everything we do;
* people are not trying to get somebody, but to find out who they already are.
As can be concluded, living in a word without social systems would, among others, require quite a different mindset than the one we currently have. Maybe the need for social systems is not a "yes" or "no" question, but rather a question of how to establish the systems that would really serve us.

When going to the principles underlying each system, we should at first consider the main stakeholders, and their interests and worries. This is what defines the purpose and functions of a system. Broadly speaking, at least four important groups can be pointed out:
1) those who provide financing to the system -- the interest of this group is to maximise their benefits/profits for their investments (of course, taking into account the risk dimension);
2) private and legal persons who are or are supposed to be served by the system -- their interest or worry is to get the service on at least acceptable quality level;
3) public or governmental institutions that are designed to stand for the interests of the public -- they are accountable for the public;
4) the ones working for the system -- their interests generally are to get paid and to keep/improve their positions.

When basing to the interests/worries of the different stakeholders, the overall functions of the people working within a system can be summarised as follows:
* preserve the system and keep it functioning;
* increase the efficiency of the system;
* increase the number of clients served by the system;
* continuously balance the interests of different stakeholders -- ensure that the quality of service provided to each stakeholder is proportional to the stakeholder's power;
* invent innovations and do everything else possible for serving stakeholders (first of all, the most powerful ones) better.

What is important in here is to understand, that people being parts of the systems shall behave in accordance with the above functions and the respectively pre-defined roles. The things they say do not certainly present their personal opinions or viewpoints. The things that they do are not certainly in line with their own personal values and principles. If they want to act differently, they basically have two options: either transform the system (of course, the more complex the system is, the harder this would be) or get out of it.

Rate this Article:
  • Article Word Count: 799
  • |
  • Total Views: 42
  • |
  • permalink
  • Print Article |
  • Send to a Friend |
  • |
  • Add to Google |