Systems Oriented Design / Systemorientert Design (NO)

The designerly way to work with systems

The main mission of Systems Oriented Design is to build the designers own interpretation and implementation of systems thinking so that systems thinking can fully benefit from design thinking and practice and so that design thinking and practice can fully benefit from systems thinking.



News blog

A map of the Norwegian state

Norway gov map small 

One of the SOD master students in the Design for Democracy studio of the autumn 2018 went bravely to the task of mapping out Norway as a state and organization. The map spans from the top to far down to the bottom of the governing hierarchy. Though the map is far from complete it reveals some of the immense complexity of our society. Understanding a bit of this should be valuable for anybody who regards themselves as citizens of a democratic society.

The print version of this map is 5x3 meters. Click the image to see a bigger version.

We hope to find some resources to pick this up and work on with it. It is valuable work but it takes time. After all this map of biochemical pathways took over 30 years of refinement: >>>>>


Read the report from the project here


Fully funded PhD

tak sommer 642


Want to join the Oslo SOD team?

We are happy to announce a fully funded PhD possition in Systems Oriented design at AHO.

You will be working closely to the SOD team at AHO and the Oslo environment. You must be willing to move to Oslo for the period of four years.

Please follow this link to see the details:



We also have a 50% associate/ assistant professor in SOD announced

Follow this link to see the details






@ Home in Transition (short)



 @HOME in transition

Encouraging asylum seekers towards more self-driven approaches to navigate the unknown they are surrounded with.

Niloufar Gharavi and Melina Hozhabri

This project is the story of tackling a common affliction today which brought 2 migrant girls from Iran to each other. They shared their backgrounds, hopes, pains and skills together, forming the project which was not only a master diploma, but a real life concern for them both.

This diploma project is meant to be the first pilot of a co-development concept in transition (elaborated inside report) which happened in Norway at the Refstad Transit reception center in Oslo, during winter-spring, 2018.




SOD picture book

Digging in the archive i found the old SOD picture book, a book that was never finished. It seems still worth being made accessible. It is a document of the early years of SOD. The book project was abandoned in 2010 for various reasons.

Bear with the lack of refinement and language issues. The articles are written as project deliveries form the students. The concept was that the students received a layout and format for their final short reports from their projects. In that way much work was done for the book project. Despite this considerable work was needed to finalize it, one of the reasons why this stopped. Another reason is that the projects became increasingly content rich and needed longer reports.

Looking back there where far more products than now. This is a shame because i think products deserve as much of a systemic consideration as other designs. 


The cover and layout were done by Adrian Paulsen and Christoffer A. Lange.


Cant see the pdf?: This browser does not support PDFs. Please download the PDF to view it: >>>>>


Systems Oriented Architecture

 A SOD workshop with architecture students from the Fatih Sultan Mehmet University in Istanbul, Faculty of Architecture and Design was held at AHO the first to fifth July 2018. The workshop was joined by 22 students and two staff from the university. The group was lead by Dr. Firat Hassan Diker and Research assistant Burcu Nimet Dumlu. The workshop was held by Professor Birger Sevaldson.

The workshop 

The workshop was for training students in a systems oriented approach to architecture. This implies that they investigated and mapped out many aspects of the given case. The aspects ideally include all technological cultural and design approaches but expand to the use of the facilities both by the inhabitants but also how this affects the bigger community and how the community might be involved and included. A systemic approach to architectural design cares for the overall ecology of the project, both sustainability and social issues. The architecture would negotiate between contradictions and mediate different needs. It would also investigate how an intervention could change and adapt over time.

The case:

The task was to design an intervention in the area of Şişhane in Istanbul that helps to introduce a program to the area of integration between tourism and the traditional crafts and trades in the area. The intervention should be multi-functional creating services and ownership for many users, inhabitants, visitors and businesses.

The students were using Gigamapping and other SOD techniques, and presented a concept for an intervention at the end of day five.




Follow SOD on





Mother institution:

AHO-logo                      dr-logo



Main research networks:


  logo systemic design 150                 OCEAN-logo-grey               formakademisk






doga logo       halogen        AttendoLogo