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Policy and Practice Support

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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 planning. Clients for the projects were government, corporations and non-government organizations. The repository […]
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. Examples include project management, commodity cycles, urban dynamics, and infectious disease policy. Video (30 minutes): Models that Matter: […]
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 session builds skills in the mechanics of defining problems dynamically, mapping systems structure, and teasing out qualitative […]
Provides a generic model incorporating business growth, personnel transfers, resignations and retirements to calculate training days for different personnel groups. Training includes both new skills and skills maintenance. Digital poster: Papaioannou, P. (2013). System dynamics for modeling corporate evolution and implied training needs, digital poster #784, from the First Global Conference on Research Integration and […]
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. Topics include abstraction, complexity, decision hierarchy, emergence, feedback, gap analysis, hierarchy, interdependence, non-linear dynamics, path dependence, root definition, stakeholder analysis, and worldview. Each concept is briefly explained and linked […]
Systems archetypes are recurring generic systems structures found in many kinds of organisations, under many circumstances, and at many levels and scales. They are distinctive combinations of reinforcing and balancing processes. These system archetypes teach how to diagnose recurring problems and to design effective interventions. Eight common archetypes are: fixes that fail shifting the burden […]
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). The Institute “is a week-long, immersive learning opportunity designed to introduce general principles of systems science and foster a deeper understanding of selected methodologies that […]
These two videos describe the difference between analysis (study of the parts) and synthesis (understanding of the whole). Analysis provides knowledge; synthesis provides understanding. Describes that all systems are parts of larger systems. Also describes that an essential property of a system is that it cannot be divided into independent parts; that its properties derive […]
This video introduces systems thinking for people with little prior knowledge of the field through four key systems thinking skills: Exploring boundaries – understanding the inclusion, exclusion and marginalisation of stakeholders and the issues that concern them. Appreciating multiple perspectives – how and why stakeholders frame issues in different ways. Understanding relationships – networks of […]
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 […]

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