From: Ratio Juris, Vol. 27, Issue 4, pp. 477-495, 2014 (click here to buy this article from SSRN)
Autopoiesis and systems theory are terms often treated as synonymous by lawyers. This sleight‐of‐phrase elides the space between autopoiesis and systems theory, removing its content. Within this eliminated space there exist numerous understandings of systems approaches in law; one such understanding is complexity theory. Complexity theory entails a very different systems view of law to that of autopoiesis. In this paper I explore the concepts of complexity and their relevance to law. In tracing an outline of complexity, a number of contradictions, paradoxes, and additional questions are exposed which require further detailed analysis in the future.