Proceedings of the 56th Annual Meeting of the ISSS - 2012, San Jose, CA, USA, 56th Annual Proceedings of ISSS

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From Bertalanffy to Discipline-Independent-Transdisciplinarity

Vincent Vesterby


When Bertalanffy advocated a new scientific discipline called general system theory, this generalist mode of understanding was to be based on the isomorphism of laws, principles, and models in the different sciences, and on structural uniformities (isomorphies) in the subject matters of those sciences. There is a conceptual shift in Bertalanffy’s work from the logico-mathematical mode to a deeper more complex understanding. There is a corresponding shift in the understanding of isomorphies from the isomorphy of laws and principles to the isomorphy of qualities of real systems. The recognition of isomorphies in real situations and systems has resulted in the creation of the modern generalist mode of understanding and from there the development of discipline-independent-transdisciplinarity. This paper gives an introduction to this form of transdisciplinarity, and explains how this mode of understanding naturally develops a universal transdisciplinary language.

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