Our world and our society are in trouble. Nature’s systems are complex and interconnected, yet our knowledge resides in disciplinary silos. As a result, our human activities tend to originate from within these siloed domains, and as they become increasingly impactful, the risk of unforeseen consequences becomes ever stronger. The interdependent systems we rely on for our survival and our welfare are in danger, sometimes even due to the actions we take to try to protect ourselves and our planet.
The Bertalanffy Circle envisioned that a GSTD could be developed and used to support interdisciplinary communication and cooperation, to facilitate scientific discoveries in disciplines that lack exact theories, to promote the unity of knowledge, to help to bridge the divide between the object-oriented and the subject-oriented disciplines without reducing either to the other, and to contribute to the building of a “better world” 16–19.
Although progress towards this vision has been slow, we believe that the conditions have turned in favour of breakthrough progress towards a GSTD in the immediate future:
We, the authors of this Manifesto, believe that the discovery and development of a General Systems Transdiscipline is both possible and important, so we have been striving to outline a vision and research agenda for how progress might made by a research community working towards this common goal. Initially, we abstracted the structure and dynamics of a discipline, and used this to show what would be involved and contained in a “systemological” discipline31,40. We also explored the nature of transdisciplines, to understand what would additionally characterize a general systems transdiscipline 41,42. We argue that this disciplinary structure provides a framework for organizing the collective efforts of the GSR community. In addition, we realized that progress towards discovering a GST* is intimately linked with progress towards articulating a General Systems Worldview (GSW), and that this provides a potentially powerful new route towards a GST* 29,43. We hold that these foundations will facilitate collaboration towards realizing the vision of the founders, and call upon general systems researchers to join in our collective efforts.
In accordance with the new vision outlined above, we believe that progress can best be made by focussing on the development of:
We encourage general systems researchers to meet, connect, discuss and report on progress towards the establishment of GSTD, whether by creating new opportunities or via existing fora e.g.:
We call on all who support the vision for a better tomorrow facilitated by GSTD to:
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 L. von Bertalanffy, 'The History and Status of General Systems Theory', Academy of Management Journal, vol. 15, no. 4, pp. 407-426, 1972, pp.413,423-424.
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 D. Hammond, Science of Synthesis: Exploring the Social Implications of General Systems Theory. Boulder Colorado: University Press of Colorado, 2003, p.247.
 M. S. Archer, Social Morphogenesis. Dordrecht: Springer, 2013.
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 C. A. Hooker, 'Introduction to Philosophy of Complex Systems A', in Vol. 10: Philosophy of Complex Systems, 1st ed., C. A. Hooker, Ed. Amsterdam: Elsevier BV, 2011, pp. 3-90.
 P. M. Illari, F. Russo, and J. Williamson, Causality in the Sciences. Oxford: OUP, 2011.
 J. Mingers, Systems Thinking, Critical Realism and Philosophy: A Confluence of Ideas. New York: Routledge, 2014.
 S. Psillos, Scientific Realism: How Science Tracks Truth. London: Routledge, 1999.
 J. M. Wilby, D. Rousseau, G. Midgley, M. Drack, J. Billingham, and R. Zimmermann, 'Philosophical Foundations for the Modern Systems Movement.', in 'Systems Thinking: New Directions in Theory, Practice and Application', Proceedings of the 17th Conversation of the International Federation for Systems Research, St. Magdalena, Linz, Austria, 27 April - 2 May 2014, Linz, Austria, 2015, pp. 32-42.
 D. Rousseau, 'General Systems Theory: Its Present and Potential [Ludwig von Bertalanffy Memorial Lecture 2014]', Systems Research and Behavioral Science, Special Issue: ISSS Yearbook, vol. 32, no. 5, 2015.
 D. Rousseau, 'Foundations and a Framework for Future Waves of Systemic Inquiry. Presented at the 22nd European Meeting on Cybernetics and Systems Research (EMCSR 2014), 2014, Vienna, Austria.', in EMCSR 2014: Civilisation at the Crossroads - Response and Responsibility of the Systems Sciences, Book of Abstracts, J. M. Wilby, S. Blachfellner, and W. Hofkirchner, Eds. Vienna: EMCSR, 2014, pp. 428-434.
 D. Rousseau, J. M. Wilby, J. Billingham, and S. Blachfellner, 'In Search of General Systems Transdisciplinarity. Presented at the International Workshop of the Systems Science Working Group (SysSciWG) of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE), in Torrance, Los Angeles, 24-27 Jan 2015', 2015.
 J. Billingham, 'GST as a route to new Systemics. Presented at the 22nd European Meeting on Cybernetics and Systems Research (EMCSR 2014), 2014, Vienna, Austria.', in EMCSR 2014: Civilisation at the Crossroads - Response and Responsibility of the Systems Sciences, Book of Abstracts, J. M. Wilby, S. Blachfellner, and W. Hofkirchner, Eds. Vienna: EMCSR, 2014, pp. 435-442.', 2014.
 J. Billingham, 'In Search of GST. Position paper for the 17th Conversation of the International Federation for Systems Research on the subject of "Philosophical Foundations for the Modern Systems Movement", St. Magdalena, Linz, Austria, 27 April - 2 May 2014.', 2014, pp. 1-4.
 J. Billingham, 'GST* as the unifying theory of the Systems Sciences. In D. Rousseau, J. Wilby, J. Billingham, S. Blachfellner, (Eds), Systems Philosophy and its relevance to Systems Engineering, Workshop held on 11 July 2015 at the International Symposium of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) in Seattle, Washington, USA. Available at https://sites.google.com/site/syssciwg2015iw15/systems-science-workshop-at-is15', 2015.
 see e.g.:
 G. Klir, Architecture of Systems Problem Solving. New York N.Y.: Plenum Press, 1985.
 L. Friendshuh and L. R. Troncale, 'Identifying Fundamental Systems Processes for a General Theory of Systems', Proceedings of the 56th Annual Conference, International Society for the Systems Sciences (ISSS), July 15-20, San Jose State Univ., p. 23 pp., 2012.
 K. D. Palmer, 'On the Possibility of General Systems Theory Star (GST*): Universal Concrete Systems Theory', 2015. [Online]. Available: https://www.academia.edu/14055421/On_the_Possibility_of_General_Systems_Theory_Star_GST_Universal_Concrete_Systems_Theory. [Accessed: 20-Jul-2015].
 K. D. Palmer, 'General Schemas Theory (CSER2004)', 2004. [Online]. Available: https://www.academia.edu/3796041/General_Schemas_Theory_CSER2004_. [Accessed: 20-Jul-2015].
 D. Rousseau, J. M. Wilby, J. Billingham, and S. Blachfellner, 'A Typology for Systemology', in prep.
 D. Rousseau, J. M. Wilby, J. Billingham, and S. Blachfellner, 'The Scope and Range of General Systems Transdisciplinarity', in prep.
 D. Rousseau, J. M. Wilby, J. Billingham, and S. Blachfellner, 'Systems Philosophy and its relevance to Systems Engineering, Workshop held on 11 July 2015 at the International Symposium of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) in Seattle, Washington, USA. Available at https://sites.google.com/site/syssciwg2015iw15/systems-science-workshop-at-is15.'
 D. Rousseau, J. Billingham, J. M. Wilby, and S. Blachfellner, 'The synergy between General Systems Theory and the General Systems Worldview', in prep.