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System dynamics at sixty: the path forward

John Sterman

System Dynamics Review, 2018, vol. 34, issue 1-2, 5-47

Abstract: The late Jay Forrester founded the field of system dynamics 60 years ago. On this anniversary I ask what lessons his remarkable life of innovation and impact hold for the field. From a Nebraska ranch to MIT, servomechanisms, digital computing and system dynamics, Jay lived his entire life on the frontier, innovating to solve critical problems. Today, more than ever, humanity faces grave threats arising from our mismanagement of increasingly complex systems. Fortunately, progress in system dynamics, the natural and social sciences, computing, data availability, and other modeling disciplines have advanced the frontier in theory and methods to build reliable, useful knowledge of complex systems. We must therefore ask: What would Jay do if he were young today? How would he build on the knowledge, technology, data and methods now available to improve the science and practice of system dynamics? What must we now do to explore the next frontier? © 2018 System Dynamics Society

Date: 2018
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