Grounded System Dynamics: A Procedure for Underpinning System Dynamics with a Domain Modeling Method

  • F. P Fiona Tulinayo
  • P. Patrick van Bommel
  • H. A Erik Proper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Business Information Processing book series (LNBIP, volume 92)


In this paper, we present a procedure Grounded System Dynamics (GSD) which we use as a guide to underpin a System Dynamics (SD) model with a domain modeling method called Object-Role Modeling (ORM). GSD is a combination of two existing methods (SD with ORM). By combining these two methods we generate synergy effects by using already existing modeling methods and by so doing we overcome some of the weaknesses of SD model building. Secondly, transformation of information from an ORM model of dynamic domains into an SD model is achieved. To apply the GSD procedure to a real-life case (Mukono Health Center (MHC), we use SD-ORM mapped constructs. As a result from the GSD procedure application, is an SD model to which we define quantitative foundations that result into simulations. Our approach(GSD) has been validated using case studies one of which is described in this paper. From this conclusions are drawn.


System Dynamics Object-Role Modeling 


  1. 1.
    Bloesch, A., Halpin, T.A.: Conceptual queries using ConQuer-II. In: Embley, D.W., Goldstein, R. (eds.) ER 1997. LNCS, vol. 1331, pp. 113–126. Springer, Heidelberg (1997)Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Borshchev, A., Filippov, A.: From System Dynamics and Discrete Event to Practical Agent Based Modeling: Reasons, Techniques, Tools. In: 22nd International Conference of the System Dynamics Society (2004)Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Burmester, L., Matthias, G.: Combining System Dynamics and Multidimensional Modelling - A Metamodel Based Approach. In: Proceedings of the 14th Americas Conference on Information Systems, Toronto, ON, Canada (August 2008)Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Chang, L.C., Tu, Y.M.: Attempt to Integrate System Dynamics and UML in Business Process Modeling. In: Sterman, J.D., Repenning, N.P., Langer, R.S., Rowe, J.I., Yanni, J.M. (eds.) Proceedings of the 23rd International Conference of the System Dynamics Society. System Dynamics Society, Boston (2005)Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Chen, P.P.: The Entity-Relationship Model-Towards a Unified View Data. ACM Transactions of database systems 1(1), 9–36 (1976)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Duggan, J.: A Comparison of Petri Net and System Dynamics Approaches for Modelling Dynamic Feedback Systems. In: 24th International Conference of the Systems Dynamics Society, Nijmegen, The Netherlands (July 2006)Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Elf, M., Putilova, M., von Koch, L., Ohrn, K.: Using System Dynamics for Collaborative Design: a Case Study. BMC Health Services Research 7, 123 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Forrester, J.W.: Industrial Dynamics. MIT Press, Cambridge (1961)Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Halpin, T.A., Bloesch, A.: Data modeling in UML and ORM: A comparison. Journal of Database Management 10(4), 4–13 (1999)Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Halpin, T.A., Morgan, T.: Information Modeling and Relational Databases, 2nd edn. Morgan Kaufmann Publishers, San Francisco (2008)Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Halpin, T.A., Wagner, G.: Modeling Reactive Behavior in ORM. In: Song, I.-Y., Liddle, S.W., Ling, T.-W., Scheuermann, P. (eds.) ER 2003. LNCS, vol. 2813, pp. 567–569. Springer, Heidelberg (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Hevner, A.R., March, S.T., Park, J., Ram, S.: Design Science in Information Systems Research. MIS Quarterly 28(1), 75–105 (2004)Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Lane, D.C.: The Emergence and use of diagramming in system dynamics: a critical account. System Research and Behavioral Science 43, 1135–1150 (2008)Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Leaver, J.D., Unsworth, C.P.: System Dynamics Modeling of Spring Behavior in the Orakeikorako Geothermal Field. Elsevier Ltd 36(2), 101–114 (2007)Google Scholar
  15. 15.
    Melao, N., Pidd, M.: A Conceptual Framework for Understanding Business Processes and Business Process Modelling. Information Systems Journal 10, 105–129 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Morecroft, J.D.W.: A Critical Review of Diagramming Tools for Conceptualizing Feedback System Models. Dynamica 8(1), 20–29 (1982)Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Morecroft, J.D.W.: System Dynamics and Microworlds for Policymakers. European Journal of Operations Research 35(3), 301–320 (1988)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. 18.
    Papageorgiou, G.N., Hadjis, A.: New Planning Methodologies in Strategic Management; An Inter-Paradigm System Dynamics Approach. In: Dangerfield, B.C. (ed.) Proceedings of the 26th International Conference of the System Dynamics Society. System Dynamics Society, Athens (2008)Google Scholar
  19. 19.
    Pidd, M.: Tools for Thinking: Modelling in Management Science, 2nd edn. John Wiley, The Atrium (2003)Google Scholar
  20. 20.
    Richardson, G.: Problems for the future of system dynamics. System Dynamics Review 12, 141–157 (1996)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Scholl, J.: Agent-based and System Dynamics Modeling: A call for cross study and joint research. In: Proceedings of the 34th Annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICS), Maui, Hawaii, vol. 3, pp. 1–10 (January 2001)Google Scholar
  22. 22.
    Sharif, A.M.: Industrial Viewpoint can systems dynamics be effective in modeling dynamic business systems? Business Process Management Journal 11(3), 612–615 (2005)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Sterman, J.D.: Business Dynamics- Systems Thinking and Modeling for a Complex World. McGraw Hill Higher Education, New York (2000)Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Tan, K.S., Ahmed, M.D., Sundaram, D.: Sustainable Enterprise Modelling and Simulation in a Warehouse Context. Business Process Management Journal 16, 871–886 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Tulinayo, F.P., Groessler, A., Hoppenbrouwers, S.J.B.A., van Bommel, P.: Complementing System Dynamics with Object-Role Modeling. In: Ford, A., Ford, D.N., Anderson, E.G. (eds.) Proceedings of the 27th International Conference of the System Dynamics Society. System Dynamics Society, Albuquerque (2009)Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Tulinayo, F.P., Hoppenbrouwers, S.J.B.A., Proper, H.A.: Integrating System Dynamics with Object-Role Modeling. In: Stirna, J., Persson, A. (eds.) The Practice of Enterprise Modeling, vol. 15, pp. 77–85. Springer, Heidelberg (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Tulinayo, F.P., Hoppenbrouwers, S.J.B.A., van Bommel, P., Proper, H.A.: Integrating System Dynamics with Object-Role Modeling and Petri Nets. In: Mendling, W.E.J., Rinderle-Ma, S. (eds.) Enterprise Modelling and information systems Architectures, GI-edition, Ulm, Germany. IFIP, pp. 41–54 (September 2009)Google Scholar
  28. 28.
    Zhang, Z., Jai, L., Chai, Y.: A New Kind Methodology for Controlling Complex Systems. International Journal of Engineering Applied Sciences 6(2) (2010)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© IFIP International Federation for Information Processing 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • F. P Fiona Tulinayo
    • 1
  • P. Patrick van Bommel
    • 1
  • H. A Erik Proper
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Computing and Information SciencesRadboud University NijmegenNijmegenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Public Research Centre Henri TudorLuxembourg-KirchbergLuxembourg

Personalised recommendations