City Research Online

Complexity, Emergence and the Challenges of Assurance: The Need for a Systems Paradigm

Hessami, A. G. & Karcanias, N. (2011). Complexity, Emergence and the Challenges of Assurance: The Need for a Systems Paradigm. IEEE Aerospace and Electronic Systems Magazine, 26(2), pp. 34-41. doi: 10.1109/MAES.2011.5739488


The complexity of modern products, systems, and processes makes the task to identify, characterise, and provide sufficient assurance about the desirable properties a major challenge. Stakeholders also demand a degree of enhanced confidence about the absence of undesirable properties with a potential to cause harm or loss. This develops a framework of seven fundamental facets of performance as an ontology for emergent behavioural properties and a separate framework for the emergent structural properties of complex systems. The emergent behavioural aspects are explored and we develop a systems framework for assurance based on an Assessment and Management paradigm each comprising a number of principles and processes. The key argument advanced is that in the face of complexity and incessant change, enhanced confidence in the achievement of desirable and avoidance of undesirable properties requires a systems approach empowered by suitable modelling and relevant diagnostic tools explaining the nature of emergent properties. Our principal focus is on safety, security, and sustainability emergent behavioural (performance) aspects of complex products, systems, and processes.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2011 IEEE. Personal use of this material is permitted. Permission from IEEE must be obtained for all other uses, in any current or future media, including reprinting/republishing this material for advertising or promotional purposes, creating new collective works, for resale or redistribution to servers or lists, or reuse of any copyrighted component of this work in other works.
Publisher Keywords: Safety, security, complexity, sustainability, assurance, system approach
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
T Technology > TL Motor vehicles. Aeronautics. Astronautics
Departments: School of Science & Technology > Engineering
School of Science & Technology > Engineering > Electrical & Electronic Engineering
Text - Accepted Version
Download (214kB) | Preview



Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics

Actions (login required)

Admin Login Admin Login