2010/07 Service Systems and Systems Sciences in the 21st Century (INCOSE International Symposium)


Jennifer M. Wilby, Kyoichi Kijima, David Ing and Gary S. Metcalf


The proposal of a panel for the technical program for the INCOSE Chicago 2010 International Symposium required positions papers. This contribution from some senior members of the systems sciences community was planned as part of an initial association with the systems engineering community.


Progress on the emerging science of service systems will be advanced by improved collaboration between scientists, engineers, managers and designers. The endorsement of SysML by the OMG provides an option for rigourous descriptions of service systems.

The domains modeled by systems engineers have generally been technical in nature. "A service system can be defined as a dynamic configuration of resources (people, technology, organisations and shared information) that creates and delivers value between the provider and the customer through service" (IfM and IBM 2008). Service systems in the 21st century not only include service machines, but also commercial relationship interactions and public infrastructural and social offerings. Broadening the domains of interest to the subjective and the ambiguous presents challenges not only the formal modeling of systems, but also the effective attainment and communications of shared understandings.

A group of senior researchers with shared knowledge in the systems sciences has been conducting conversations about service systems, applying modeling tools in both face-to-face and distributed communications. Findings on joint learning, obstacles, and the responses from observers will be discussed.


  1. Introduction: Jennifer M. Wilby, “Service Systems and the Systems Sciences”
  2. Position #1: Kyoichi Kijima, “A Co-creation Model of the Process of Service Innovation”
  3. Position #2: David Ing, "Service Systems, Systems Language, and Modeling Tools"
  4. Position #3: Gary S. Metcalf, "Models and Messes in the Sensemaking on Service Systems"


Jennifer M. Wilby, Kyoichi Kijima, David Ing and Gary S. Metcalf, "Service Systems and Systems Sciences in the 21st Century", INCOSE 20th International Symposium, Chicago, Illinois, July 12-15 2010.