Abstract for: Visualizing Spatial and Temporal Dynamics in Google Earth Using Powersim

At its genesis, system dynamics (SD) modeling was developed to examine the temporal behavior of interrelated systems. This ability has made SD modeling and analysis the choice for decision and policy makers to do scenario testing and risk analysis. In addition to the conceptual advantages of SD modeling in this realm, are the many SD modeling platforms that have been developed that greatly simplify model creation and more importantly, provide an environment for visualizing the output. However, when making decisions that involve urban planning, electrical and/or water infrastructure, and the like, or for examining impacts of resource development on the environment, the spatial aspects of the decision becomes just as important as the temporal dynamics. To properly support these decisions, simultaneous visualization of the temporal and spatial dynamics is needed. This paper presents a methodology for utilizing vbscript from within the SD development platform Powersim to dynamically link Powersim simulations with Google Earth to visualize, in real time, spatial data that change over time. The presentation will describe the logic behind the approach, its capabilities and limitations, and areas for improvement that should be addressed.