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Table 1 Characteristics of complex system and their application to our work

From: Manifestations and implications of uncertainty for improving healthcare systems: an analysis of observational and interventional studies grounded in complexity science

Characteristic Definition Application
Individuals who learn Individuals can process information and react to changes [23]. Focus on individuals in the system
Interconnections between agents Individuals in the system are interconnected. Outcomes are the result of interactions across individuals rather than individual skill sets or behaviors [22]. Focus on how they relate, learn, and make sense
Self-organization Order emerges from the interactions between individuals. These interactions cannot be completely understood or imposed from outside of the system [16]. Focus on patterns of relationships over time
Non-linearity and emergence Complex behaviors emerge from simple rules. Inputs and outputs are not proportional or predictable [16]. System performance is not predictable over time [14],[15]. Focus on how individuals make sense of unexpected events and changes over time and learn from these experiences
Co-evolution and feedback loops Individuals and microsystems are nested within other systems, which evolve and feed back over time [15],[21].