Abstract for:Uncertainty and Model Development

The System Dynamics modelling cycle has been described extensively in the SD literature. However, causes and consequences of deep uncertainties, and implications of dealing with important uncertainties on model development have not been considered explicitly in these cycles. In this paper, we will systematically assess how being aware of and willingness to include ‘deep uncertainty’ in SD changes the model development cycle. First we provide an overview of the SD modelling cycle in the literature. We then compare the SD model development cycle to the cycle of Exploratory Modelling  and Analysis, which is a methodology for dealing with deep uncertainty. We subsequently assess how the operationalisation of each of the SD phases would change if deep uncertainty would be considered explicitly in SD. Doing so, we show how each phase changes as well as the overall modelling cycle. We show how consideration of deep uncertainty leads to a broader framework, within which the traditional SD cycle is embedded as a special case for dealing with issues characterised by marginal uncertainty at most. Finally, we show how exploratory choices in earlier model development phases have knock-on effects on later stages.