Resources to Support Systems Thinking

Systems Thinking Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program
Last Reviewed

This list is designed to provide Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program grantees with additional resources to support their systems thinking efforts.

This tool is part of the Putting Systems Thinking into Practice Toolkit.

The Complete Guide to Systems Thinking and Learning

This book uses the systems thinking approach to guide transformative change in our personal lives and organizations.


Foundations of Data Equity

This interactive online workshop offers a framework and tools to overcome the equity challenges in workplace data.


Making the Jump to Systems Thinking

This article discusses how to make the mental shift to systems thinking: identifying problems versus symptoms of larger issues, and understanding the roadblocks to putting systems thinking into practice.


Systems Practices

This workbook will walk you through a process of applying a systems thinking practice. It was used as part of the OPA systems thinking series.


Systems Science and Systems Thinking for Public Health: A Systematic Review of the Field

This paper reports on findings from a systematic review designed to investigate the state of systems science research in public health.


Systems Thinking and Organizational Learning: Acting Locally and Thinking Globally in the Organization of the Future

This article offers an overview of systems thinking in organizations and explains why this kind of thinking is vital for organizational growth.


Using Collective Impact to Bring Community Change

This resourceful book outlines how a Collective Impact system works and innovative applications to issues facing community developers.

Learn and Apply Systems Thinking

The Waters Center for Systems Thinking provides resources to bring more understanding of what systems thinking is and how to incorporate the habits, tools, and concepts of systems thinking into both professional work and daily life to achieve desired results.


A New Path to Understanding Systems Thinking

This study explores how 17 common systems thinking practices correlate to the different Myers-Briggs Type Inventory types. It also explores how different personality types approach systems thinking.


Thinking About Systems: 12 Habits of Mind

This short blog post lists the habits and mental practices of a systems thinker.


The "Thinking" in Systems Thinking: How Can We Make It Easier to Master?

This resource explains the different aspects of systems thinking methods and the seven accompanying essential mental modalities.


Using Behavior over Time Graphs to Spur Systems Thinking Among Public Health Practitioners

This peer-reviewed article on implementing systems thinking into practice uses Behavior Over Time graphs in public health to generate discussion and create solutions to complex issues.

The Inclusion of Sexual And Reproductive Health Services Within Universal Health Care Through Intentional Design

This research article describes a practical approach to integrating the quality of sexual and reproductive health care within the universal health care agenda using the “5Ps” framework.


Putting Systems Thinking into Practice

This is one in a series of articles on systems thinking and how practitioners can put it into practice. The article links to resources, tools, and exercises.


Using Systems Thinking in State Health Policymaking: An Educational Initiative

This article highlights insights from the Legislative Health Policy Certificate Program, a multi-session series on systems thinking designed for lawmakers and their staff. Legislators were taught to approach policy issues with a big-picture perspective, consider changing dynamics, and explore higher-leverage interventions for addressing intractable health challenges.

Equitable Evaluation Framework™ Framing Paper

This framing paper is a product of the Equitable Evaluation Project (now the Equitable Evaluation Initiative) and was published in July 2017 to help provide a framework to apply principles of equitable evaluation.


How Do You Evaluate Systems Change? A Place to Start

This article explains the importance of determining an approach and data collection methods before conducting a systems thinking evaluation.


Raising the Bar – Integrating Cultural Competence and Equity: Equitable Evaluation Equitable Evaluation

This article highlights the transition from culturally competence framing to equity focused evaluation framing.


Ripple Effects Mapping for Evaluation

This resource shows how to use mind-mapping to draw the stories and ripple effects of a complex program and how to code them to measure outcomes.