Loughborough University
Leicestershire, UK
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We are frequently asked for details of the better books and reports that cover systems engineering. A fairly basic search through book publishers/distributors and websites reveals a whole plethora of what at first sight appear to be interesting books. Some of these books are really excellent from an undergraduate teaching perspective but completely inappropriate for the practicing systems engineer.

We are planning to review as many books as possible and classify them in areas of relevance. We welcome your help and comments to do this as in the list below. Also we are always keen to hear about other books and reports that come highly recommended and will appreciate your comments in any books either already in the list or new ones to be included. We should also like to apologize in advance if we miss out one or more of the substantive systems engineering texts. Obviously, it will take time to include all the relevant material but please do let us know which books you would like to recommend, which books you feel we should include, and of course why. Our contact details appear in the Getting Involved Page.

If you are an author and you have a book that you would like to appear in this list please feel free to let us know about it and/or forward a copy for us to review.


Systems Engineering General

  1. Systems Engineering Handbook, INCOSE - TP-2003-002-03.1 – 2007- Cecilia Haskins
  2. Diagnosing the System for Organisations - Beer, S. (1985). Chichester: Wiley. ISBN: 0-471-906751                                                                    
  3. Systems Thinking, Systems Practice - Checkland, P. (1981). Chichester: Wiley. ISBN: 0-471-27911-0  
  4. Soft Systems Methodology in Action - Checkland, P. and Scholes, J.  (1990). Chichester: Wiley. ISBN: 0-471-92768-6            
  5. The Viable Systems Model - Espejo, R. and Harnden, R. (1989)  Chichester: Wiley ISBN: 0-471-93731-2
  6. Dealing with Complexity - Flood, R.L. and Carson, E.R. (1988). NewYork: Plenum ISBN: 0-306-42715-X
  7. The Art of Systems Thinking - O’Connor, J. and McDermott, I. (1997). Thorsons. ISBN: 0-7225-3442-6
  8. Feedback Thought in Social Science and Systems Theory - Richardson, G.P. (1991). Philadelphia: UPenn ISBN: 0-8122-1332-7
  9. The Fifth Discipline. Doubleday - Senge, P.M. (1990). ISBN: 0-7126-9885-X
  10. The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook. Brealey - Senge, P. et al. (1994). ISBN: 1-85788-060-9
  11. The Dance of Change - Senge, P. et al. (1999). Brealey. ISBN: 1-85788-243-1
  12. Information Rules - Shapiro, C. and Varian, H.R. (1999). Boston, Ma.: HBS. ISBN: 0-87584-863-X
  13. General Systems Theory (2nd Ed.) - Skyttner, L. (2005). Hackensack, NJ: World Scientific Publishing. ISBN-13 978-981-256-467-2
  14. Strategic Management and Organisational Dynamics - Stacey, R. (1996). (2nd Ed.). Pitman ISBN: 0-273-61375-8
  15. Systems Engineering For Dummies Wiley Publishing, Inc 2011 IBM Limited Edition, free download off their website ISBN: 978-1-118-10001-1
  16. A Journey through the Systems Landscape Harold ‘Bud’ Lawson College Publications 2010 ISBN 978-1-84890-010-3
  17. Systems Engineering: Coping with Complexity - Richard Stevens, Peter Brook, Stuart Arnold, Ken Jackson Prentice Hall 1998 ISBN 978-0-13-095085-7
  18. Putting Systems to Work - Derek Hitchins - John Wiley 1992
  19. Advanced Systems Thinking, Engineering, and Management - Derek Hitchins Artech House
  20. The Toyota Product Development System: Integrating People, Process and Technology - James Morgan and Jeffrey Liker Productivity Press 2006 ISBN 1-56327-282-2
  21. Human Factors In Engineering and Design  - Mark S Sanders, Ernest J Mccormick 1992
  22. Systems Engineering and Analysis - Benjamin S. Blanchard and Wolter J. Fabrycky 2008. 978-0131963269
  23. Systems Engineering Principles and Practice 2nd Edition -Alexander Kossiakoff, William Sweet, Samuel Seymour & Steven Biemer, 2003 ISBN 978-0-470-40458-2
  24. Decision Making in Systems Engineering and Management - Gregory S. Parnell, Patrick J. Driscoll and Dale L. Henderson. 2nd ed. Oxford Wiley, ISBN 0470900423
  25. Handbook of Systems Engineering and Management - Andrew P. Sage and William B. Rouse. 2nd ed. Oxford 2009 - Wiley-Blackwell. ISBN 0470083530
  26. Thinking in Systems: a Primer - Donella Meadows Sustainability Institute 2008 ISBN 978-1-84407-726-7
  27. Writing Better Requirements - Ian Alexander and Richard Stevens Pearson Education Ltd 2002 ISBN-13: 978-0-321-13163-8
  28. Systems Engineering: A 21st Century Systems Methodology - Derek Hitchins - John Wiley and Sons 2007. ISBN 978-0470-05856-5
  29. System Validation and Verification - Jeffrey O. Grady - CRC Press 1998. ISBN 0-8493-7838-9
  30. Mathematical Theory of Systems Engineering - Wayne Wymore 1967 - CRC Press
  31. Engineering Modeling and Design - Wayne Wymore and Terry Bahill 1992 - CRC Press
  32. Model-based Systems Engineering - Wayne Wymore 1993 - CRC Press
  33. An Introduction to Systems Science - John Warfield 2006- World Scientific Publishing Co ISBN-13: 978-9812567024

Soft Systems - Enterprise Architectures

  1. Generalised Enterprise Reference Architecture and Methodology  - Bernus, P. (1999). GERAM: Annex to ISO 15704 (2000) Requirements for enterprise-reference architectures and methodologies.  Griffith University, Queensland, Australia
  2. Soft systems methodology and its relevance to the development of information systems. Checkland, P. B. (1995).
  3. Information systems provision: the contribution of soft systems methodology - F. A. Stowell. Maidenhead, McGraw-Hill: 1-17.
  4. Enterprise Modelling.  Fox, M. S. and M. Gruninger (1998). AI Magazine(Fall, 1998): 109-121.
  5. The Getting and Keeping Of Wisdom - Hammer, M. (2002). - Inter-Generational Knowledge Transfer in a Changing Public Service. Ottawa, Research Directorate, Public Service Commission of Canada.
  6. The self-designing high-reliability organisation:  aircraft carrier flight operations at sea -Rochlin, G., T. D. LaPorte, et al. (1987). Naval War College Review 40: 76-90
  7. Enterprise modelling and integration - Vernadat, F. B. (1996). London, Chapman & Hall.
  8. Cultivating communities of practice - Wenger, E., R. McDermott, et al. (2004). Harvard Business School Publications.
  9. Handbook of Human Systems Integration. Published Online: 28 Jan 2005 Editor: Dr. Harold R. Booher 2003. John Wiley & Son
  10. Enterprise modelling and integration - Vernadat, F. B. (1996). London, Chapman & Hall.

Human Error/ Safety/ Risk Management

  1. Normal accidents - living with high-risk technologies - Perrow, C. (1999). Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press.
  2. Human error:  models and management. Reason, J. (2000).  British Medical Journal 320: 768-770.
  3. When Systems Fail - Roberts, K. H. and R. Bea (2001). Organizational Dynamics 29(3): 179-191.
  4. Trapped in the net:  the unanticipated consequences of computerisation. Rochlin, G. I. (1997). Princeton, NJ, Princeton University Press.
  5. Cultivating communities of practice - Wenger, E., R. McDermott, et al. (2004).. Harvard Business School Publications.
  6. Just Culture Balancing Safety and Accountability: Sidney Dekker 2007, IBSN 978-07546-7267-8  - Paperback Ashgate Publishing Ltd
  7. Human Error James Reason 1990 Cambridge University press ISBN-13: 978-0521314190
  8. The Human Contribution Unsafe Acts, Accidents and Heroic Recoveries James Reason (Paperback - 28 Dec 2008)
  9. Managing the Risks of Organizational Accidents James Reason (Paperback - 15 Dec 1997)

Excellent Books for Undergraduate Courses

  1. Systems Engineering Principles and Practice - Alexander Kossiakoff, William N. Sweet, Sam Seymour – 2011.  Published by WILEY
  2.  SysML for Systems Engineering - Jon Holt, Simon Perry – 2008. Published by IET
  3.  Systems Engineering: Coping With Complexity - Richard Stevens – 1998. Published by PEARSON
  4.  NASA Systems Engineering Handbook - Stephen J. Kapurch – 2010. Published by DIANE Publishing Co.
  5.  Systems engineering - Eric Aslaksen, W. Belcher – 1992. Published by Prentice Hall
  6.  Systems Engineering: Building Successful Systems - Howard Eisner – 2011. Published by Morgan & Claypool
  7. Thinking in Systems: A Primer - Donella H. Meadows - 2008. Published by Chelsea Green Publishing
  8.  Spacecraft Systems Engineering - Peter Fortescue, Graham Swinerd, John Stark. Published by WILEY
  9.  Telemetry Systems Engineering - Dr Frank Carden, Russell P. Jedlicka, Dr. Robert Henry – 2002. Published by Artech House
  10.  Handbook of Control Systems Engineering - L. C. Westphal – 2001. Published by Springer
  11.  Control Systems Engineering - J. Nagrath – 2006. Published by New Age International
  12.  Systems engineering: principles and practice of computer-based ... - Bernhard Thomé – 1993. Published by WILEY
  13.  Handbook of Systems Engineering and Management - Andrew P. Sage, William B. Rouse – 2011. Published by WILEY
  14.  Satellite broadcast systems engineering - Jorge Matos Gómez – 2002. Published by Artech House
  15.  Verification and validation in systems engineering - Fawzi. Hassaïne, Yosr Jarraya – 2010. Published by Springer
  16.  System Engineering Management - Benjamin S. Blanchard – 2012 Published by WILEY
  17.  Advanced Information Systems Engineering: 20th International Conference CAiSE’08 - Zohra Bellahsène, Michel Léonard – 2008.  Published by Springer
  18.  Transportation Systems Engineering: Theory and Methods - Ennio Cascetta – 2001. Published by Springer

Excellent Books on Systems Theory (all levels)

  1. The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook - Strategies for Building a Learning Organisation - P. Senge - 1994. Published by Currency, Doubleday
  2. General Systems Theory: Problems, Perspectives, Practice - Lars Skyttner – 2005. Published by World Scientific
  3. Modern control systems theory – M. Gopal -1993. Published by New Age International Publishers
  4. An approach to general systems theory - George J. Klir – 1969. Published by Van Nostrand Reinhold Co.
  5. Career Development and Systems Theory: Connecting Theory and Practice - Wendy Patton, Mary McMahon – 2006. Published by Sense
  6. Systems Theory and Family Therapy: A Primer - Dorothy Stroh Becvar, Raphael J. Becvar – 1999.  Published by University Press of America
  7. Systems of Art: Art, History and Systems Theory - Francis Halsall – 2008. Published by Peyter Lang
  8. Information Systems Theory - Volume 2 - Yogesh K. Dwivedi, Michael R. Wade, Scott L. Schneberger. Published by Springer
  9. Modern Control System Theory and Design - Stanley M. Shinners – 1998. Published by WILEY
  10. Creativity and General Systems Theory - William G. Jr. Covington, William G. Covington, Jr. – 1998. Published by Universal Publishers
  11. General Systems Theory: A Mathematical Approach - Yi Lin – 1999. Published by Springer
  12. Modern Financial Systems: Theory and Applications - Edwin H. Neave – 2009. Published by WILEY
  13. Systems Theory in Action: Applications to Individual, Couple, and ... - Shelly Smith-Acuña – 2010. Published by WILEY
  14. Complex Time-Delay Systems: Theory and Applications - Fatihcan M. Atay – 2010. Published by Springer
  15. Complex Systems Theory and Development Practice: Understanding ... - Samir Rihani – 2002. Published by ZED Books
  16. Intelligent Unmanned Systems: Theory and Applications - Agus Budiyono, Bambang Riyanto, Endra Joelianto – 2009. Published by Springer
  17. Manufacturing Systems: Theory and Practice - George Chryssolouris – 2006. Published by Springer
  18. Sociology and the New Systems Theory: Toward a Theoretical Synthesis - Kenneth D. Bailey – 1994. Published by Suny Press
  19. Linear Systems Theory: A Structural Decomposition Approach - Ben M. Chen, Zongli Lin, Yacov Shamash – 2004. Published by Springer
  20. An Introduction to Infinite-Dimensional Linear Systems Theory - Ruth F. Curtain, Hans Zwart. Published by Springer
  21. General Systems Theory Beginning with Wholes - Barbara Gail Hanson – 1995. Published by Taylor and Francis

Excellent Books for the Practicing Engineer

  1. Systems Engineering: A 21st Century Systems Methodology - Derek K. Hitchins  - 2007. Published by WILEY
  2. Systems Engineering with SysML/UML: Modeling, Analysis, Design (The MK/OMG Press) - Weilkiens - 2008. Published by ELSEVIER
  3. Competitive Engineering: A Handbook For Systems Engineering, Requirements Engineering, and Software Engineering... - Tom Gilb – 2005. Published by ELSEVIER
  4. Control Systems Engineering: International Student Version - Norman S. Nise - 2011. Published by WILEY
  5. Security Engineering: A Guide to Building Dependable Distributed Systems - Ross J. Anderson - 2008. Published by WILEY
  6. Engineering a Safer World: Systems Thinking Applied to Safety  - Nancy G. Leveson - 2012. Published by The MIT Press
  7. Handbook of Electrical Power System Dynamics: Modeling, Stability, and Control (IEEE Press Series on Power Engineering... - Mircea Eremia and Mohammad Shahidehpour - 2013. Published by WILEY

Periodic Journals



  1. Simulation
  2. The Systemist (UKSS)
  3. The International Journal of Mechanic Systems Engineering
  4. Systems Science & Control Engineering
  5. Systems Research and Behavioral Science
  6. Systems Engineering Procedia
  7. Systems Engineering - Theory & Practice
  8. Systems Dynamics Review
  9. Systemic Practice and Action Research
  10. SIAM Journal on Applied Dynamical Systems
  11. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineering Part I: Journal of Systems and Control Engineering
  12. Open Systems and Information Dynamics
  13. Kybernetes
  14. Journal of the Operational Research Society
  15. Journal of Systems Science and Systems Engineering
  16. Journal of Systems Engineering and Electronics (IEEE)
  17. Journal of Systems Engineering and Electronics
  18. Journal of Social and Evolutionary Systems
  19. Journal of Pipeline Systems Engineering and Practice
  20. Journal of Organisational Transformation and Social Change
  21. Journal of Automation & Systems Engineering
  22. Journal of Applied Systems Studies
  23. International Journal of Unmanned Systems Engineering (IJUSEng)
  24. International Journal of Systems Science
  25. International Journal of Systems and Service - Oriented Engineering (IJSSOE)
  26. International Journal of System of Systems (IJSSE)
  27. International Journal of Ocean Systems Engineering (IJOSE)
  28. International Journal of Knowledge-Based and Intelligent Engineering Systems
  29. International Journal of Information Technologies and Systems Approach (IJITSA)
  30. International Journal of Industrial and Systems Engineering (IJISE)
  31. International Journal of General Systems
  32. International Journal of Control
  33. INCOSE Journal of Systems Engineering
  34. IIE Transactions of Healthcare Systems Engineering
  35. IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics
  36. European Journal of Information Systems
  37. European Journal of Control
  38. Emergence: Complexity and Organization [E:CO]
  39. Dynamical Systems: An international journal
  40. Cybernetics and Systems: An International Journal
  41. Cybernetics and Human Knowing
  42. Business and Information Systems Engineering