Moscow Methodological Circle

The Moscow Methodological Circle (MMC) was a scientific organisation set up by Georgy Shchedrovitsky to examine problems from an inter-disciplinary point of view, looking at the various methodological approaches of each discipline to yield what they described as "systemic thinking activity".[1]

The MMC started out as an informal group meeting in a pub on Gorky Street which included the mathematician Alexander Zinoviev, the sociologist Boris Grushin and the philosopher Merab Mamardashvili. They attracted the attention of the KGB but were tolerated.[2]

The MMC developed an approach to methodological thinking, which featured these principles:[3]

  • holism and reflexivity
  • practical orientation which uses systems thinking as the means for organising processes of resolving wicked problems by multi-professional and transdisciplinary teams
  • reflexivity as practical recursive orientation of thinking to itself whereby it is able to re-construct and re-direct itself;
  • the “methodological turn” from thinking about systems as objects to develop the process of thinking systemically


The MMC has had a lasting impact on Russian systems thinking particularly through the Methodological School of Management. This is acknowledged by Viktor Khristenko.


  1. ^ Liborakina, Marina (1996). "A bridge between past and future". Simulation and Gaming Yearbook. Psychology Press. 4: 41–48. ISBN 9780749418663. Retrieved 19 September 2018.
  2. ^ Rindzeviciute, Egle (2015). "The Future as an Intellectual Technology in the Soviet Union: From Centralised Planning to Reflexive Management". Cahiers du monde Russe. 56 (1): 111–134. doi:10.4000/monderusse.8169.
  3. ^ Maracha, Viacheslav (2014). "System-Thinking-Activity Approach: Thinking Response to Global Challenges". Book of Abstracts EMCSR 2014.