Abstract for: Web-based Simulations for Strategy and Sustainability: The MIT Sloan LearningEdge Management Flight Simulators

The MIT Sloan School of Management has created a set of interactive, web-based management flight simulators to teach key ideas in business, strategy, sustainability and related fields. These simulations are freely available to anyone through the MIT Sloan LearningEdge portal (mitsloan.mit.edu/MSTIR/SYSTEM-DYNAMICS). Here I describe four simulations now available: Salt Seller (a multiplayer commodity pricing simulation); Eclipsing the Competition (learning curves, using the solar photovoltaic industry as the example); Platform Wars (competition in the presence of network externalities using the video game industry as the context); and Fishbanks (the Tragedy of the Commons in the context of renewable resource management, updating the classic game by Dennis Meadows). Each simulator teaches important concepts in management, strategy and/or sustainability. Each is grounded in a particular industry or firm, and comes with original case studies or briefing material describing the strategic challenges in these settings. Through these simulations, students, executives, policymakers and others can explore the consequences of different strategies so they can learn for themselves about the complex dynamics of difficult issues in a variety of important settings. I describe their purpose and use, illustrate their dynamics, and outline the instructor resources available for each.