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Does System Dynamics Make Sense?

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Ralf Lippold

May 10, 2016


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A good four decades ago a group of researchers around Jay W. Forrester (creator of the field system dynamics) did work together on the future of the planet which resulted in a small booklet "Limits to Growth". Back then the reactions of the public, and media was astounding, yet the business got back pretty fast to "normal". Now with the fast pace of change whether in globalisation, digitization, climate change, food, energy, water, etc. the learnings, and experiences of system dynamics become more relevant again. Despite the fact that outstanding research is done in various fields to tackle the challenges humanity faces right now (from a local to global scale) there is little to be that draws together the knowledge. and applied action in a joint way of understanding and doing. Does system dynamics make sense? I am convinced that it does, especially in bringing tighter together the experts in various fields around a common goal: creating a better world of the future. Therefore I have taken part in several competitions here on this platform, lately with the 'CitizenScienceLab' (a system dynamics think tank based in Dresden, Germany). I wonder whether there are other initiatives, projects under way in this broad scope bringing together system dynamics, lean thinking, exponential technologies, social innovation (e.g. Theory U) and digital communication. Let's create a world we see possible in the future together - why not start today?

Thomas Simon

Oct 29, 2016


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I have been a practitioner of systems thinking ( SDM) since reading Donnell Meadows Limits to Growth. I am very interested in applying systems dynamics to energy management for commercial and residential buildings. I want to connect with others here as I have a project I am attempting to apply SDM modeling and am looking for like minded others.