We use applied research of complex cognitive and social systems to improve lives and organizations.

Born at Cornell University, Cabrera Research Lab drives basic research, innovation, and public understanding in Systems Thinking, Systems Mapping, and Systems Leadership.

Training

We provide Keynote Talks, Short Intensive Trainings, and Certifications on Systems Thinking, Systems Mapping, and Systems Leadership in both Live and Online formats. <more>

Publications

We (literally) wrote the book on Systems Thinking, Systems Mapping, and Systems Leadership. We effort mightily to ensure that our books are scientifically sound and publicly accessible. <more>

Resources

As an innovation lab, funded by NSF, USDA, Cornell University and numerous others, we are committed to developing tactile tools for Systems Thinkers and Leaders. <more>

About Our Lab

About Our Faculty

Derek Cabrera, PhD

An internationally known author and systems scientist and serves on the faculty of Cornell University and the Board of Advisors DSE at the US Military Academy at West Point... [more]

Laura Cabrera, PhD

An expert in research methods and systems thinking, Laura serves on the faculty of Cornell University where she teaches systems thinking, systems leadership, and systems mapping... [more]

3 Labs in 1 with 4 Focus Areas

Born at Cornell University, CRL drives basic research, innovation, and public understanding in Systems Thinking, Systems Mapping, Systems Leadership, and Systems Science. Our Mission-Vision is to Engage, Educate, and Empower 7 Billion Systems Thinkers to solve everyday and wicked problems.

We look for projects that bridge our scientific research with real-world, practical, everyday experience. We work with excellent teams of excellent people. We don't just think the theories, we build real stuff that makes lives better and increases human potential and organizational effectiveness.

A Basic Research Lab

As a traditional research lab, we focus on advancing basic research in the theory and practice of systems thinking (a.k.a., cognitive complexity) as a field. Our research has led to the discovery of two basic theories (DSRP and VMCL), and several powerful models, that have gained wide acceptance in the field of systems thinking, organizational design and systems leadership. These theories, in turn, have transformed numerous subfields and topical areas.

An Innovation & Media Lab

We also innovate and invent practical tools and technologies, media and materials for systems thinkers. Our research has led to two patents and the development and invention of powerful tools for systems thinkers such as: DSRP visual language, ThinkBlocks, and four softwares (MetaMap, Plectica, Subtask.co, and Team.video. And, we're the source for countless more innovations and inventions!

A Public Understanding Lab

And, we're committed to increasing public understanding about of systems thinking. We strive to make the basic science of systems thinking accessible without loss of fidelity through our books, tools, and blogs. We believe that science without public understanding is unsustainable. Our numerous projects include: public campaigns like ThinkWater, curricula at the Santa Fe Institute, an educational documentary, a rap song, annual conferences, and speaking and training.

Systems Thinking

(Cogntiive Complexity)

Our Lab has broken new ground that answers fundamental questions about: What Systems Thinking is? Why it works? and How to do it effectively? We do theoretical and basic research in Cognitive Complexity, Metacognition, and Structural and Embodied Cognition.

Systems Mapping

(Visual Complexity)

More neurons connect your brain to your eyes and hands than the rest of your body combined. Making Cognition visual and tactile is therefore critical to effective thinking. We do theoretical, basic, translational, and applied research into Systems Mapping of all kinds.

Systems Leadership

(Organizational Complexity)

We do theoretical, basic, translational, and applied research into Systems Leadership of all kinds including: Systems thinking in organizations. Managing and Leading agile teams and culture change; Organizational alignment, design, human development and talent management.

Systems Science

(Ontological Complexity)

Our Lab has broken new ground that answers fundamental questions about: What Systems Thinking is? Why it works? and How to do it effectively? We do theoretical and basic research in Cognitive Complexity, Metacognition, and Structural and Embodied Cognition.

Connect with us on social media

Get your daily dose of scientifically sound and ultimately useable systems thinking, mapping, and leadership on facebook or on our blog. Both are appropriate for both aspiring and expert systems thinkers.

Learn Systems Thinking Daily on Facebook

Learn Systems Thinking Daily on Our Blog

Or connect with us on any of these social platforms:

Just for Fun

Want to learn more about the types of things we do and how it applies to you? Take a look at some of our TED Talks and videos. There's lot's more free stuff in the resources section...