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Updated A.Y. 2019-2020

In this course, students learn to use the system dynamics modeling process: define the dynamics of problems, develop hypotheses regarding the structure underlying problem behavior, analyze and validate computer simulation models, design policies to improve systemic behavior. Emphasis is on designing simulation models to explain problematic dynamic behavior, and then re-designing the models to represent the implementation of policies to improve behavior. In addition to learning from lectures and materials, students gain practical experience through in-class tasks.

The course is structured in three main sections:

Section I: Concepts, Methodologies and Techniques

  • Introduction to complex systems
  • Principles of simulation
  • Introduction to system thinking and system dynamics
  • The modeling process
  • Structure and behavior of dynamic systems

Section II: Tools (12 hours)

  • Problem identification
  • Dynamic hypotheses
  • Causal loop diagram
  • Stock and flow diagram
  • Model validation
  • Simulation and policy analysis

Section III: Cases and Applications

  • Cases of application of system dynamics modeling to strategic management and business
  • Computer lab activities

References: Sterman, J. (2000). Business Dynamics: Systems Thinking and Modeling for a Complex World. McGraw-Hill, Irwin (ISBN: 9780072389159).