Abstract for: Modularity in System Dynamics: representing closed-loop supply chain configurations

Modularity has been used in several disciplines as a structured way to approach complexity, to increase efficiency, to reduce repetitive work, to decrease errors, and to create cumulative learning. The system dynamics field has yet to benefit from modularity as a systematic method for developing models. In this article, we discuss system dynamics modules that can be used in developing supply chain models. First, certain design rules are identified for developing modules in system dynamics. Then, a theoretical framework is used to guide closed-loop supply chain module development. Afterwards, reoccurring structures are identified to be used in developing system dynamics modules for modelling supply chain systems. Finally, the modules were used to represent three different closed-loop supply chain configurations; we show the implications of each configuration.