Toward a theory of complex agile systems

Agile is a team-based experience that enables value to be created faster.

There is a significant challenge when agile is brought into larger organizations where the work of multiple teams needs to be coordinated

The primary models for managing this complexity, such as SAFe, utilize top-down engineering to manage the team process.

Unfortunately, top-down engineering decreases team adaptability and introduces the risk of system brittleness as interdependencies between teams and systems become difficult to manage.

Complex systems theory looks at this challenge and can provide insights into the potential of developing self-managed and interdependent extensible systems.

There is the potential for integrating systems theory with those that underpin patterns languages and monomyths to create a new model for managing complex agile systems.

*Systems Theory* Woods' theory of Graceful Extensibility

*Pattern Theory* Alexander's theory of Pattern Languages

*Meaning Theory* Campbell's theory of the Hero's Journey monomyth

Let's briefly explore these theories.

**Next: Meaning Theory**