Process Lifecycle is a manner of looking at processes, in the context of their initial, maturing and final stages of evolution and growth. Understanding and analyzing processes in this manner helps to understand how they fit into a "system" of processes as well as how they change as a process matures within an organization.
This manner of analysis is a companion to the systems thinking discipline that is defined as any process of estimating or inferring how local policies, actions, or changes influences the state of the neighboring universe. It is an approach to problem solving that views "problems" as parts of an overall system, rather than reacting to present outcomes or events and potentially contributing to further development of the undesired issue or problem. Systems thinking is a framework that is based on the belief that the component parts of a system can best be understood in the context of relationships with each other and with other systems, rather than in isolation. The only way to fully understand why a problem or element occurs and persists is to understand the part in relation to the whole. Standing in contrast to Descartes's scientific reductionism and philosophical analysis, it proposes to view systems in a holistic manner. Consistent with systems philosophy, systems thinking concerns an understanding of a system by examining the linkages and interactions between the elements that compose the entirety of the system.
^ O'Connor, J. & McDermott, I. (1997). The Art of Systems Thinking: Essential Skills for Creativity and Problem-Solving. San Francisco: Thorsons Publishing. p. 11.
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