What is the difference between change and evolution?

Playing with two words here that @daviding is using in two central places of his work:

I was wondering recently, what makes a system capable of evolution? Is answering this question the same as answering the question: what is life? Is evolution just a special case of change more broadly? What is the difference between change and evolution?

I guess most would think of biological systems when the topic of evolution comes up… But how do social systems evolve? is it just through the evolution of the humans that make up those systems, as if they were the genes, or do social systems also have their basis for evolution down in the DNA layer? How does this idea of memes come in here? Are memes are widely adopted in the scientific world as genes?

On the questions of change and evolution (and coevolution), one starting point is the International Encyclopedia of Systems and Cybernetics , 2nd Edition, as published by Charles François 2004, and presented by the Bertalanffy Center for the Study of Systems Science.

Based on that, all evolution is change, but not all change is evolution.

For more context, you might refer to “Coevolutionary understanding: a larger system” | 2008 at http://coevolving.com/blogs/index.php/archive/coevolutionary-understanding-a-larger-system/

Responding to @Robert_Best ,

Systems that evolve are conventionally considered to be living systems.

In the ISSS, John Kineman use to run the Special Integration Group called “What is Life and Living”, that built on the work of Robert Rosen. Searching on that, I notice that that term was discussed at a Systems Thinking Ontario meeting in 2018, see https://wiki.st-on.org/2018-04-18

I may not have covered as many questions as @Robert_Best best asked, but we’re in the ballpark. There is one more item, though.

I have to admit that I’m not a fan of “memes” myself, because it takes an idea from biology, and mangles it into social psychology. At least I’m not alone in the criticism, see " The scientific controversy behind memes" | Bethan Clark | 2017 at https://www.varsity.co.uk/science/11746

Creative Commons Licence Contributions to the Open Learning Commons are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Please honor the spirit of collective open learning by citing the author(s) in the context of a dialogue and/or linking back to the original source.