biomatrix design courses

why the courses are needed

Advancing globalisation and digitalisation make it increasingly obvious that the legacy systems of the industrial age (ranging from education, energy and medical systems to the current finance and democracy systems) are inappropriate, out of control and unable to solve humanity’s complex problems.  They actually co-produce those problems.

Thus, the cultural, economic and political systems of humanity need to be redesigned.

Current management education is also a relic of the industrial age, besides lacking an integrating theory of management. It is therefore incapable of guiding the redesign of such systems. This is confirmed by the dismal success rates of change interventions (e.g. about 70 percent fail and only 5 percent seem to show a sustained success).

Instead, we need firstly, a trans-disciplinary theory that explains how systems are organised and change and secondly, a comprehensive methodology that enables the stakeholders of a system to redesign it. Biomatrix Theory and Methodology provide this knowledge and the Biomatrix Design Courses disseminate it.

theoretical foundation of the courses

The Biomatrix Design Courses are based on Biomatrix Theory which is a w/holistic systems theory that explains how systems are organised, develop and change.

In application, the theory gives rise to a w/holistic methodology (i.e. Biomatrix Methodology) which guides the analysis and (dis)solving of complex problem s and the (re)design of systems for sustainability.

w/holistic change methodology

A w/holistic change methodology guides a manager and leader how to (re)design a system and transform it into a coherent whole that functions holistically (or systemically). It also explains how by redesigning systems, their complex problems (dis)solve.

The Biomatrix Design Courses present such a w/holistic change methodology. It outlines the steps involved in transforming the two generic types of systems (i.e. entity systems and activity systems) into a coherent whole that is sustainable and capable of learning and adapting to a changing environment.
(Note: Although the steps in the methodology are the same for both types of systems, they are applied in the context of different frameworks. An activity system is redesigned as a continuous value / supply chains and an entity system as a three-dimensional organisational matrix.)

The steps in redesigning a system are the following (described in the according module):

  • analysing the current system (Module 2)
  • brainstorming solutions (Module 2)
  • creating a design that shows how the system can function differently and produce more ideal outcomes for its stakeholders (Module 3a Activity System / Function Design and Module 3b Entity System / Organisation Design)
  • making an implementation plan that outlines the strategies involved in moving the system from its current state towards its ideal design (Module 4)
  • making a change management plan that describes the steps and methods used to manage a system transformation (Module 5)
  • providing change facilitation which is concerned with facilitating stakeholders in co-designing their shared (or containing) system, aligning with it and being committed to implementing their share of the design and thereby actually co-producing the transformation of the system of which they are a part. Amongst others, this can involve stakeholders in a Biomatrix Jam and in design iterations (Module 5 and coaching by a Biomatrix Facilitator)

course modules

The Biomatrix Design School offers the following course modules, which cover all aspects of social system design and transformation:

module 1: introduction to systems thinking

This module provides an overview of different systems thinking approaches and explains the key concepts of Biomatrix Theory.

Its aim is to transform the worldview of course participants and leaders who want to change the world. It makes them more w/holistic thinkers and provides them with an understanding of complexity, change and different options of how to act in the world.

View module videos, download manual and exercise template.

module 2: complex problem (dis)solving

This module explains the difference between problem solving and problem dissolving and provides a step by step methodology for dissolving complex problems through system redesign.

Learners are also introduced to a brainstorming method that enhances creativity, solutions orientation and higher order thinking. This brainstorming method is also the foundation of the Biomatrix Jamming Programme which allows the stakeholders of a system to participate online in collecting existing solutions and brainstorming new ones for the redesign of their shared system.

The module is also useful for making leaders more creative and skilled in problems (dis)solving and facilitating a solutions orientation in others.

Watch videos, download manual and exercise template.

module 3a: activity system (function) design

This module explains the design and management of a sustainable supply chain based on seven forces of system organisation and their associated organising principles.

A sustainable supply and value chain needs to consider the coherent and continuous flow of products and by-products and generate benefits for all stakeholders and minimise negative impacts on the planet.

module 3b: entity system (organisation) design

This module explains the design and management of an organisation as a learning matrix, based on seven forces of system organisation and their associated organising principles.

A learning organisation is wired for ongoing change in accordance with its changing environment in a creative, resilient and internally coordinated manner.

module 4: implementation planning

This module shows how to make a step by step implementation plan for the ideal system design made in the previous module.

Learners realise the importance of implementation planning, because such a plan implementation plan reveals, if the design can be implemented or not. Many good designs have failed, because the implementation was not planned sufficiently.

module 5: w/holistic change management 

This module explains the generic principles of how systems change and develop.

It also provides methods for managing and facilitating each step in the methodology discussed in module 2 on Complex Problem (Dis)Solving, namely from problem analysis to a creative design and its sustained implementation.

biomatrix design courses

The course modules combine into two different courses which are suitable for the (re)design of different systems, namely:

course 1: activity system (function) design

This course consists of Modules 1, 2, 3a, 4 and 5.

It can be applied to the (re)design of a business process, personal, organisational and societal function and industry.

At the beginning of the course the learner selects a project, business process, organisational or societal function as a case study and applies the exercises prescribed by each module to it. The outcome will be a (re)design of the case study, an implementation plan and change management design for facilitating the change.

course 2: entity system (organisation) design

This course consists of Modules 1, 2, 3b, 4 and 5.

It can be applied to the (re)design of a business organisation, NGO, NPO, government department and public / private partnership.

At the beginning of the course the learner selects an organisation or partnership as a case study and applies the exercises prescribed by each Module to it. The outcome will be a (re)design of the case study, an implementation plan and change management design for facilitating the change.

benefits of the courses

Besides conveying both, theoretical knowledge and practical expertise related to the specific subject of the course (i.e. on w/holistic thinking, complex problem solving, organisation -, industry – and function design and change management), you will also gain the following generic benefits:

understand and be confident in practical application

Each course asks you to choose a case study and exercise templates guide you to apply the learning to it. Thereby you gain confidence on how to practically apply the knowledge. The same templates can be used in other application in your future. You will also gain insight of why some of your past change interventions did not succeed as well as you intended.

improve your work performance

By applying the knowledge gained from the courses, you will be able to solve and / or facilitate the solving of complex problems in your private and work life and contribute more meaningfully to the development and (re)design of systems in your wider organizational and societal context.

enhance your personal development

The courses will transform the way you think. As a w/holistic thinker you will fundamentally change the way you think about the world and live in it.

You will gain more clarity about how the world functions and become more confident about how you can contribute to changing it. You will become more self-reflective, aware and self-reliant on the one hand and considerate of other systems and able to cooperate with stakeholders on the other.

You will become more creative and solutions-orientated and be able to facilitate others to become so as well.

By understanding complexity better you will also be able to communicate this to others and engage them in more “intelligent” conversations that contextualize their opinions and perspectives within larger frameworks and facilitate the transcendence of differences and alignment around shared visions.

become a more effective manager

You will understand how systems interact, impact on and co-produce each other and how systems are organised, based on generic principles. This will contextualise, extend and deepen your current managerial knowledge and provide you with new approaches to manage a personal, organisational or societal system.

become a more effective leader

W/Holistic leadership implies understanding the importance of each part within a larger whole, assuming responsibility for the larger whole and facilitating the parts to align around a shared vision of the containing whole and co-producing it. This requires w/holistic thinking and is a fundamental leadership skill.

Leaders also need to know w/holistic methodology to engage stakeholders in co-developing and aligning around a shared vision for the future and to inspire them to co-produce a more desirable collective future.

advance your career

The expertise gained from the courses is needed in many different areas of management, especially in senior management. Thus the courses can be regarded as executive development.

The courses on system (re)design are of special relevance to managers concerned with system design, such as business, organisation development and public policy designers, as well as management consultants and IT system designers.

By completing all courses (in the sequence listed above) and by working with the same case study throughout, you can become a w/holistic management consultant and public policy design facilitator.

You can also become a learning facilitator for the delivery of the Biomatrix Design Courses to corporate clients and a programme manager of the Biomatrix Transformation Programmes.