Sociotechnical System (glossary)

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An engineered system which includes a combination of technical and human or natural elements. (Created for SEBoK)


This definition was developed for the SEBoK.


The term "sociotechnical system" is used frequently in the literature, and almost all definitions state simply "a system incorporating humans and technology". The definition above has been created for the SEBoK alongside the definition of an "engineered system" - in the context of the SEBoK, sociotechnical systems are considered systems which are intentionally designed to incorporate human beings. See the Types of Systems topic for additional information. For a brief overview of some common characteristics of sociotechnical systems, please see ( 2012), a resource designed to support education in ethical issues in computing.

Works Cited Accessed 2012. "Why a Socio-Technical System?" Accessed September 10, 2012. Available at:

SEBoK v. 1.9 released 17 November 2017

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