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equifinality/equipotentiality

Similar to the distinction between phenotype and genotype in biology is the distinction between equifinality and equipotentiality [Latin aeqauus, equal; finis, end, goal; potens, able] in the development of systemic structures. In the case of equifinality, the same result is achieved although the starting position varies. In the case of equipotentiality, different final statesand effects can be derived from the same starting point.
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Definition extracted with permission from Simon, Fritz, et al, Family Process, Inc.: Language of Family Therapy: A Systemic Vocabulary and Source Book (Family Process Press Series)