Vulnerability Explored and Explained Dynamically

  • Michael J. Zakour
  • David F. Gillespie
Chapter

Abstract

In this chapter we describe system dynamics, reveal how it has been used to refine and extend theory, and discuss an application showing how a system dynamics simulation model contributed to the disaster policy and planning process. Simulation models offer representations of community systems and give emergency managers and other decision makers the opportunity to ask “what if” questions about their policies and the conditions that exist in their communities. System dynamics can be used to explore ideas, describe situations, and to test hypotheses and explain situations. Modeling system causes and describing how the system changes over time provide explanations and offer the potential of identifying leverage points or strategic places to intervene in the system (Senge, 2006, p. 64). System dynamics models have the potential to refine vulnerability theory and contribute in direct, practical ways to the mitigation, preparedness, response, and recovery efforts carried out by emergency managers and human service professionals.

Keywords

Coherence 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael J. Zakour
    • 1
  • David F. Gillespie
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Social WorkWest Virginia UniversityMorgantownUSA
  2. 2.Brown School of Social WorkWashington UniversitySt. LouisUSA

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