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The West of England AHSN A to Z

K is for… Knowledge

A Quality Improvement (QI) framework that we like to use here at the West of England AHSN is Deming’s System of Profound Knowledge, a theory of management and leadership created by American statistician, professor, author, lecturer, and consultant William Deming.

The System of Profound Knowledge provides a framework of thought and action for any leader who wants to transform their team and/or organisation. The approach consists of four components through which to view the world simultaneously. These are:

  • An appreciation of a system
  • Understanding of variation
  • Psychology
  • Theory of knowledge

Improving systems is about appropriately applying these four principles and practices so that the organisation can concurrently reduce costs through reducing waste and variation whilst increasing quality.

As our QI Project Support Officer Kate Phillips explains, “This is a great approach to use with a team to understand the complexity of an issue before launching a QI project.”

For a more detailed explanation of Deming’s theory and additional resources, please read the full article in our Improvement Journey section here.