Abstract for: Building and Analyzing Models with Vensim

This hands-on workshop will introduce the basics of building and analyzing a feedback model using Vensim. The class will center around a variation of Dennis Meadows' commodity model, or another similar classic. Participants will reconstruct portions of the model in order to master the mechanics of building simple stock-flow structures and exploring positive and negative feedback behavior. We will create a simple control panel for the model. Then we will use those tools to work through a critique of the model, making on-the-fly changes to the structure and parameters, and exploring the implications of decision rules. Participants will walk away with a basic understanding of the process of building a model with Vensim, using it to gain policy insight, and assessing model quality.