INCOSE-LA Chapter Speaker Meeting fresh look at Systems Engineering

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:  INCOSE-LA Chapter Speaker Meeting

:  Tuesday 7 August, 2018

A fresh look at Systems Engineering – What is it, how should it work?

Scott Jackson, PhD is an INCOSE Fellow and an independent consultant and researcher with many years in the Systems Engineering and Aerospace industry, currently working with aircraft manufacturers around the world. He is an author as well- his books include “Systems Engineering for Commercial Aircraft, Second Edition (2015)”, published by Routledge (UK) in both English and Chinese and “Architecting Resilient Systems (2010)”  published by Wiley (US). He is also a professor at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering.


Does our historical approach to Systems Engineering fit our 21st century applications? INCOSE’s definition of SE was compared to the aspirations set out in SE Vision 2025 for SE as it ought to be to address modern challenges. Doing this led us to three fundamental realizations:

  • Past systems were mostly deterministic, but 21st century systems are on the other hand increasingly non-deterministic, adaptive or evolutionary
  • Past Systems Engineering management was implicitly based on a command and control paradigm, 21st century Systems Engineering must use a more collaborative leadership paradigm
  • Past systems were largely single systems designed to solve specific problems, but 21st century systems are almost invariably networked, and are parts of complex extended enterprises with multiple, often conflicting, stakeholder objectives intimately related to complex societal challenges.

The presentation will use elements of Soft Systems Methodology (SSM) to understand the implication and consequences of the paradigm shift implied by these realizations. A revised strawman definition of Systems Engineering is offered for consideration by INCOSE, showing the changes that would be required to take these and related factors into account.

The introduction to this topic will consider changes in what we mean by “system”. The System Definition Survey issued to INCOSE Fellows in December 2016 revealed at least five radically distinct worldviews on systems within a relatively small, but moderately representative, part of the INCOSE community. Scott will describe and analyze the survey results, and comment on differences between the responses from the Fellows and the responses to a similar survey issued to the System Science Working Group a month later. All the worldviews identified offer useful perspectives for systems engineering. Systems Engineers need the flexibility to adopt different worldviews for different situations.

This presentation reflects the work of a team of experienced INCOSE authors: Hillary Sillitto, James Martin, Regina Griego, Dorothy McKinney, Eileen Arnold, Patrick Godfrey, Dov Dori, Daniel Krob and Scott Jackson.

BIOGRAPHY:  Scott Jackson, PhD is an INCOSE Fellow and an independent consultant and researcher working with aircraft manufacturers around the world. His books include Systems Engineering for Commercial Aircraft, Second Edition (2015) published by Routledge (UK) in both English and Chinese. Another book is Architecting Resilient Systems (2010) published by Wiley (US).


200 North Aviation Blvd
Bldg D8, Rm 1010
El Segundo, CA 90245
Host:  Deborah Cannon
Phone: 714-477-3755

Enter at the booth off of Aviation (N of El Segundo Blvd). The guard will direct you to parking at the front of the building. Enter the front door and guard will badge you in (you need to be registered – see link above.)  When you arrive please wait in The Aerospace Lobby in Building D8 please check in with Security, you will need to present identification and a visitor badge will be issued.  An Aerospace Corp employee will then escort you to the Conference room.

The facility is the third building from the corner of Aviation and El Segundo, just north of the discount bakery outlet. The facility has 4 gates, but only the southern-most gate is open. Identify yourself to the security guard as attending the INCOSE meeting. You can park where Security directs and enter through the lobby at the center of the building where the flag poles are. Knock on the first of the double doors, and someone will open the door for you. The handicap ramp is on the north side and can be reached by driving all the way around the back of the building. Inform the security guard if you plan to use that ramp.


COST: INCOSE Members: FREE.  Non-members: $10 (refreshments provided)


5:15-5:30  Sign-in/Registration 
5:30-6:00  Networking/Refreshments 
6:10-6:20  Introduction 
6:20-6:30  WG Presentation (TBD)
6:30-7:30  Guest Speaker Presentation

REMOTE SITES (potential-please verify with site POC):



Contact Email

Redondo Beach: Northrop Grumman R4 SIM Center

Stephen Guine

[email protected]

Azusa: Northrop Grumman Corp. (Employees)

Maria Alvarez

[email protected]

Goleta: Ricardo Control Point

Paul Stowell

[email protected]

Woodland Hills: Dassault Systemes

Christopher Jones

[email protected]


WEBCAST VIRTUAL SITE:  Register as an individual virtual participant

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