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In an closed system, it is more obvious if there's a change in volume or not as there will ussually be a lid that is pushed on by a piston. If in a closed system, they dont mention a initial volume or a volume change, then we can definitively say that work is 0. In an open system, it's sort of similar in that the gas in the container is pushing against something less physically visible. Now, the gas is pushing against air which does exist in the container but is commonly overlooked because we can't see it.
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