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synergeticsSynergetik (ger.)

  • The phenomenon of synergistic activity or behaviour, as a field of study; spec. an empirical discipline that seeks to deal with the overall behaviour of systems (typically social or conceptual systems) in flux, in so far as it cannot be inferred from the behaviour of components of the system. (OED)  
    self-organization synergy

    The word ‘synergetics’ means, literally, ‘working together’. It is here used to denote the study of interactions in a functioning system. Potentially, it is an evolving set of abstract ideas and precision tools applicable to any complex system, from factories to living organisms. Here, we are concerned solely with its application to human beings.

    Coulter, A. (1955). Synergetics, an Experiment in Human Development: 1.



    Anonymus (1959). Society for metals. Science 129, 1415.


    [It is in the study of games and in the actual playing of games that synergesis, i.e., the continuing collaboration between the machine and its operator should prove of immediate value.

    Ulam, S.M. (1960). A Collection of Mathematical Problems: 143.]


    synergetics—or the present invasion of political theory by economists

    Tullock, G. (1965). Entry barriers in politics. Amer. Econom. Rev. 55, 458-466: 459.


    A synergetic approach to problems of nonlinear dispersive wave propagation and interaction

    Zabusky, N.J. (1967). A synergetic approach to problems of nonlinear dispersive wave propagation and interaction. In: Ames, W. (ed.). Proceedings of the Symposion on Nonlinear Partial Differential Equations, 238-258.


    Synergetik – die Lehre vom Zusammenwirken

    Haken, H. & Graham, R. (1971). Synergetik – die Lehre vom Zusammenwirken. Was verbindet die Physik, Chemie und Biologie? Umschau Wiss. Tech. 6/1971, 191-195

    Haken, H. (ed.) (1973). Synergetics: Cooperative Phenomena in Multi-Component Systems; id. (1977/78). Synergetics. An Introduction. Nonequilibrium Phase Transitions and Self-Organization in Physsics, Chemistry and Biology.

    Synergetics is the exploratory strategy of starting with the whole and the known behavior of some of its parts and the progressive discovery of the integral unknowns and their progressive comprehension of the hierarchy of generalized principles.

    Buckminster Fuller, R. & Applewhite, E.J. (1975). Synergetics: 13.


    Synergetics is concerned with the cooperation of individual parts of a system that produce macroscopic spatial, temporal, or functional structures.

    Haken, H. (1980). Synergetics. Are cooperative phenomena governed by universal principles? Die Naturwissenschaften 67, 121-128: 121.

    Synergetik [...] Wissenschaft vom geordneten, selbstorganisierten, kollektiven Verhalten[...], wobei dieses Verhalten allgemeinen Gesetzen unterliegt
    Haken, H. (1981). Synergetik. Die Lehre vom Zusammenwirken. Erfolgsgeheimnisse der Natur: 21.

    Quite generally synergetics deals with systems composed of many subsystems and it studies how on a change of external constraints these systems can acquire macroscopic spatial, temporal or functional structures.

    Haken, H. (1987). Thermodynamics – synergetics – life. Journal of Non-Equilibrium Thermodynamics 12, 1-10: 1.


    Es war […] die Aufgabe, nach allgemeinen Prinzipien zu suchen, die es ermöglichen, daß durch das Zusammenwirken sehr vieler Teile eines Systems räumliche, zeitliche oder funktionelle Strukturen entstehen. Um die neue Forschungsrichtung zu kennzeichnen, führte ich in einer Vorlesung im Wintersemester 1969/70 das Wort „Synergetik“ ein. Gemeinsam mit meinem damaligen Mitarbeiter Robert Graham veröffentlichte ich 1971 in der Umschau einen Artikel „Synergetik – die Lehre vom Zusammenwirken“, wo also dieser Begriff erstmalig gedruckt erschien

    Haken, H. (1988). Entwicklungslinien der Synergetik. Naturwissenschaften 75, 163-172; 225-234: 169.