Bodily Systems and the Spatial-Functional Structure of the Human Body

Studies in Health and Technology Informatics 102:39–63 (2004)
  Copy   BIBTEX


The human body is a system made of systems. The body is divided into bodily systems proper, such as the endocrine and circulatory systems, which are subdivided into many sub-systems at a variety of levels, whereby all systems and subsystems engage in massive causal interaction with each other and with their surrounding environments. Here we offer an explicit definition of bodily system and provide a framework for understanding their causal interactions. Medical sciences provide at best informal accounts of basic notions such as system, process, and function, and while such informality is acceptable in documentation created for human beings, it falls short of what is needed for computer representations. In our analysis we will accordingly provide the framework for a formal definition of bodily system and of associated notions.



External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles


Added to PP

477 (#41,657)

6 months
118 (#36,319)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Barry Smith
University at Buffalo

Citations of this work

Ontology and Cognitive Outcomes.David Limbaugh, Jobst Landgrebe, David Kasmier, Ronald Rudnicki, James Llinas & Barry Smith - 2020 - Journal of Knowledge Structures and Systems 1 (1): 3-22.
Biodynamic Ontology: Applying BFO in the Biomedical Domain.Barry Smith, Pierre Grenon & Louis Goldberg - 2004 - Studies in Health and Technology Informatics 102:20–38.
Introduction: What is Ontology for?Katherine Munn - 2008 - In Katherine Munn & Barry Smith (eds.), Applied Ontology: An Introduction. Frankfurt: ontos. pp. 7-19.

View all 12 citations / Add more citations

References found in this work

Fiat and Bona Fide Boundaries.Barry Smith & Achille C. Varzi - 2000 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 60 (2):401-420.
A Theory of Granular Partitions.Thomas Bittner & Barry Smith - 2003 - In Matt Duckham, Michael F. Goodchild & Michael Worboys (eds.), Foundations of Geographic Information Science. London: Taylor & Francis. pp. 117-151.
SNAP and SPAN: Towards dynamic spatial ontology.Pierre Grenon & Barry Smith - 2004 - Spatial Cognition and Computation 4 (1):69–103.
Bodily Systems and the Modular Structure of the Human Body.Barry Smith, Igor Papakin & Katherine Munn - 2003 - Artificial Intelligence in Medicine (Lecture Notes on Artificial Intelligence 2780) 9:86-90.

Add more references