Unknowns

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This collection of cases illustrates the use of system dynamics in consulting projects in: chemicals, criminal justice, defense and aerospace, economics and finance, education, energy and environment, engineering and construction, health care, production management, multisector planning, public health, technology, transportation, and urban plann

Overview of several high profile system dynamics model-based applications, selected to show what such models look like, how they emerged (often in multidisciplinary interventions), and how they were used successfully to influence strategy, policy, and decision making.

This video of an hour-long workshop introduces the core concepts and patterns of thought of the system dynamics approach to complex problems: thinking dynamically, thinking causally, thinking about accumulations, and the key to it all, thinking endogenously.

The encyclopedia is a searchable online database of concepts that support the advancement of cybernetic and systems research and applications. There are more than 3,800 entries.

This resource archive covers system dynamics modeling; agent-based modeling; and social network analysis. It contains videos, slides, lecture details, and bibliographies from the Institute on Systems Science and Health (ISSH).

This introduction to systems thinking starts with the old adage "teach a man to fish and you feed him forever" and demonstrates why this may fail. It shows how the simple act of fishing is embedded in a complex web of stakeholders and issues, including climate change, pollution, overfishing, lack of access to income, irrigation and more.

The problem of dealing with unknowns does not reside in any one discipline. Instead, it inhabits many disciplines. Nearly all disciplines and practice domains have perspectives on the unknown, and their perspectives employ methods ranging from mathematics to discourse analysis.

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This taxonomy distinguishes between passive and active ignorance. Passive ignorance involves areas that we are ignorant of, whereas active ignorance refers to areas we ignore. The term ‘error’ is used for the unknowns encompassed by passive ignorance and ‘irrelevance’ for active ignorance.

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This overview of unknowns provides a portal to many topics, including how different disciplines and domains perceive unknowns, the socially constructed nature of unknowns, the diversity of unknowns, distinguishing between unknowns, metaphors and unknowns, morals and unknowns, and managing unknowns.

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The matrix below provides a useful way of distinguishing between three primary categories of unknowns. The most familiar is ignorance that we are aware of, the ‘known unknowns’. Most research addresses this kind of ignorance, seeking to fill known knowledge gaps.

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