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2010 isee User Conference

round table discussions
Participants connect at welcome reception

Thanks for making the 2010 isee User Conference an overwhelming success! We enjoyed connecting with you, sharing ideas and learning about the important work you are doing applying Systems Thinking and dynamic modeling in real world situations. Below are the presentations and supporting materials from our two and a half days together in Providence.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or feedback about the conference. We look forward to seeing you again in 2012!

Monday, October 4th, 2010

Business Tsunami: Surviving Disruptive Change in a Networked World
by Henk Akkermans, Tilburg University
Audio Recording Audio File

Modeling Climate Change Impacts in the Connecticut River Basin PDF File
by Richard Palmer, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Dementia and the Dynamics of Early Diagnosis zip File
by Peter Lacey, The Whole Systems Partnership

Communicating Complex Issues Using Storytelling PDF File
by Chris Soderquist, Pontifex Consulting

Applying a Systems Approach to Inform Society’s Search for Sustainability PDF File
by Matt Carlson, ALCES Group

Case Study: A Clinical Breakthrough via Dynamic Modeling – Part 1 PDF File
by Jim Rogers and Ed Gallaher, Advance Management Group

Case Study: A Clinical Breakthrough via Dynamic Modeling – Part 2
by Jim Rogers and Ed Gallaher, Advance Management Group

Using Array Functionality to Capture Flow Dynamics ZIP File
by Corey Peck, Lexidyne LLC

A System Dynamics Approach to Modeling Energy Systems in Alaska PDF File
by David Hoffman, University of Alaska Anchorage

The Dynamics of Financial Statements: Patterns Caused by Balance Sheet and Income Statement InteractionsPDF File
by Mark Paich, Lexidyne LLC

Education for an Interdependent World: Developing Systems Citizens
Peter Senge, Society for Organizational Learning (SoL) and MIT
Audio Recording Audio File

PDF File Poster Presentations

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

Learning and Teaching System Dynamics Modeling: A 20 Year Journey PDF File
by Diana Fisher, Wilson High School
Audio Recording Audio File

Generating Understanding of Social, Economic and Climate Dynamics
 in Interaction PDF File

by Matthias Ruth, University of Maryland
Audio Recording Audio File

Using Models to Teach Math and Science PDF File
by Mark Clemente, National Institute of Aerospace /VA Beach City Public Schools, Dee Baker, Ocean Lakes High School, Jim Batterson, NASA Retiree

Dynamic Truck Allocation for Concrete Distribution PDF File
by Rafael Bourguet-Diaz, ITESM, Jorge Garza and Pablo Vargas, CEMEX

Dynamics of Growth from Diffusion zip File
by Karim Chichakly, isee systems

The Role of STELLA in Facilitating the Design of a Public Toilet in Ghana PDF File
by Stephen Mecca, Providence College

Exploring the Structure of Healthcare Models zip File
by Mark Heffernan, Dynamic Operations P/L

Economic Development, Creative Destruction and Urban Dynamics: Rethinking Developmental Agendas zip File
by Khalid Saeed, Worcester Polytechnic Institute and Karim Chichakly, isee systems

Introducing Drug Dynamics Using SD Models PDF File
by Diana Fisher, Wilson High School

Business Cycle Dynamics: A Case Study of Philips Semiconductors PDF File
by Henk Akkermans, Tilburg University

Business Model Dynamics PDF File
by Oliver Grasl, transentis consulting

The Youth Violence Systems Project PDF File
by Steve Peterson, Lexidyne LLC; Paul Bothwell, Youth Violence Systems Project
Audio Recording Audio File


Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

Quick Introduction to STELLA, iThink and the Modeling Process zip File
by Steve Peterson, Lexidyne LLC

Feedback Forum: A Preview of iThink and STELLA Version 10 PDF File
by Karim Chichakly, isee systems

Creating Interfaces for iThink and STELLA Models zip File
by Peter Lacey, The Whole Systems Partnership and Joanne Egner, isee systems

Building Models with iThink and STELLA zip File
by Oliver Grasl, transentis consulting and Joanne Egner, isee systems

Advanced Techniques using iThink and STELLAzip File
by Mark Heffernan, Dynamic Operations P/L

Exploring Options for Creating Online Simulations zip File
by Michael Bean, Forio Business Simulations and Jeremy Merritt, isee systems

PDF File Download Full Conference Schedule

About the Presenters (listed alphabetically by last name)

Henk Akkermans Henk Akkermans is Professor of Supply Network Dynamics at Tilburg University in The Netherlands. Henk has been developing system dynamics models with major companies from the aerospace, electronics, telecom and life sciences industries for almost 20 years. He is a leading expert in supply networks and takes a special interest in helping innovation-driven industries manage the complexities of business change. He strongly relies on the system dynamics methodology to gain a deep understanding of the dynamics that drive company performance under conditions of distributed decision-making. Henk has published work in numerous journals and books including Production and Operations Management, European Journal of Information Systems and the System Dynamics Review.

Dee Baker Dee Baker has taught mathematics at the middle and high school levels for the past nine years. She currently teaches a wide-range of mathematics courses at Ocean Lakes High School in Virginia Beach, including Pre-calculus, Data Analysis, Mathematical Modeling and a Geometry series aimed at the hesitant math student. Dee has written curriculum for the Mathematics and Science Academy, served on a Standards Review Committee for the Virginia Department of Education, and beta-tested inquiry-based STEM modules developed by educators at NASA Langley tying NASA missions to standards-based mathematics content. She has conducted professional development for teachers focusing on the utilization of technology and incorporation of 21st century skills into the classroom, and is now a member of Virginia Beach Public School’s eTeacher project in partnership with the University of Virginia.

Jim Batterson Jim Batterson has taught high school physics and mathematics, worked as a scientific programmer for LTV Corporation, and, from 1980 until his retirement in 2008, was a research engineer at NASA Langley Research Center. At NASA he carried out flight research on the dynamics and control of aerospace vehicles, served as Head of the Dynamics and Control Branch, and later as Deputy Director for Strategic Development. He has also served on a number of community boards, including the Newport News School Board and New Horizons Regional Education Center Board. While at NASA, he carried out assignments to the Office of Science and Technology Policy, the National Nanotechnology Coordination Office, NASA Headquarters, and to the Office of Virginia’s Secretary of Education. Most recently, Jim served as Senior Advisor to the Commonwealth for STEM Initiatives in Governor Tim Kaine’s administration.

Michael Bean Michael Bean is President and co-founder of Forio Business Simulations, a system dynamics software company specializing in developing web simulations. Before Forio, Michael held several senior management posts at simulation consulting and simulation software firms in the United States and Europe. He was also a research associate for the System Dynamics Group at MIT, where he developed simulations that examined the strategic implications of decision-making. For over 20 years, Michael has been exclusively consulting on strategic simulation and decision-support engagements. His work with corporations and government agencies nationally and internationally include topics such as transfer pricing, competitive strategy, emerging technologies, and customer migration. He has presented at national conferences and conducted scenario planning, systems thinking, and computer simulation seminars to corporations and government agencies worldwide.

Paul Bothwell Paul Bothwell lives in the Roxbury neighborhood of Boston, and has been active since 1984 in the Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative (DSNI), a community-transformation movement in Roxbury. His interests and experience in the DSNI/Dudley Urban Village neighborhood have been in resident leadership development; the use of systems thinking and system dynamics in community strategic thinking and planning; community conflict resolution and collaboration building; and graphical facilitation of shared thinking and community learning. Paul is also Team Leader of City Church Multiplication Movements in urban New England, and directs the Boston Urban Academy, a church-based ministry training program in seven languages currently. He consults frequently in faith-based organizations, in facilitating the development of learning organizations, church collaborations for social justice and education reform, and thinking tools for reflective practice for church leadership teams in the city.

Rafael Bourguet Diaz Rafael Bourguet-Diaz is Professor in Industrial and Systems Engineering at ITESM Campus Monterrey, Mexico. He teaches system dynamics and organizational process improvement in bachelor and graduate programs for both Engineering and Public Administration Schools. Professor Bourguet specializes on knowledge reutilization using system dynamics, systems methodologies, and participative methodologies for decision-making. Before joining ITESM he was researcher-engineer of the control division at Electrical Research Institute. He has received national recognition as master thesis advisor in the electrical industry.

Matt Carlson Matt Carlson is an ecologist with the ALCES Group, a company focused on the application of simulation models to inform sustainable land-use decision making. The primary simulation model developed by the company is ALCES, a tool capable of exploring the long-term effects of multiple overlapping land uses and natural disturbances on the environment and economy. For the past six years, Matt has contributed to the development of ALCES and its application to a variety of ecosystems from the boreal forest of northern Canada to the tropical forest of Paraguay. The ALCES Group believes that education is an essential tool for achieving sustainability, and Matt has helped develop a web-based land-use simulation tool for junior and senior high schools.

Karim Chichakly Karim Chichakly is Director of Product Development at isee systems, where he has directed the design and development of STELLA and iThink since 1991. Over the years, he has worked closely with key partners and the system dynamics community to develop new modeling features, such as hierarchical modules and spatial features, and the XMILE model interchange file format. He holds both an M.E. and a B.E. degree in Electrical and Software Engineering from Dartmouth College, an M.S. degree in System Dynamics from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and a B.A. in Mathematics from Skidmore College. He has been involved in commercial software development for 30 years and has taught mathematics and computer science at the high school, undergraduate, and graduate levels.

Mark Clemente Mark Clemente is currently an Educator-in-Residence at the National Institute of Aerospace (NIA), “on loan” from Virginia Beach City Public Schools. Mark has 11 years of experience teaching chemistry in Virginia Beach. During that time, he wrote and reviewed science curriculum, served as Science Department Chair, conducted many professional development workshops, and served as an adjunct instructor for Virginia Wesleyan College’s School of Education. He is currently an adjunct instructor for the University of Virginia’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies. As an Educator-in-Residence, Mark is coordinating a Modeling and Simulation Demonstration School project. The purpose of this project is to use modeling and simulation as an instructional strategy within math and science instruction and to demonstrate ways to integrate math and science instruction through the use of models and simulations. He is also developing inquiry-based activities that tie math and science content to real-world NASA missions.

Diana Fisher Diana Fisher is a math teacher at Wilson High School in Portland, Oregon. Her primary interest for the last 20 years has been learning and teaching using system dynamics in the classroom. She is the author of two books published by isee systems: Modeling Dynamic Systems: Lesson for a First Course and Lessons in Mathematics: A Dynamic Approach and a contributing author to Tracing Connections: Voices of Systems Thinkers (isee systems and Creative Learning Exchange 2010). Diana has received many honors for her excellent and innovative teaching and was a principle investigator on two National Science Foundation grants focusing on training teachers to use system dynamics in the K-12 curriculum. She has presented at many conferences nationally and internationally to encourage K-12 use of system dynamics.

Ed Gallaher Ed Gallaher received a PhD in Pharmacology in 1976. From 1979-2004, Dr. Gallaher was a VA Research Pharmacologist and Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Behavioral Neuroscience at OHSU Medical School. His research focused on behavioral, physiological, and genetic aspects of tolerance and physical dependence to alcohol, benzodiazepines, and related sedative hypnotics. Dr. Gallaher’s biophysical training provided a unifying view of tolerance and physical dependence as perturbations of endogenous feedback control systems. This approach was enhanced by further training in modeling and simulation at Stanford Medical School, Portland State University, and MIT. Dr. Gallaher collaborated with Diana Fisher on two NSF grants and was the principal investigator for an NIH Science Education Partnership Award designed to bring system dynamics into high school classrooms. He was co-founder of SymFest, a “science fair” to highlight the modeling accomplishments of middle and high school students. Dr. Gallaher’s current interests include the application of system dynamics to clinical problems such as quantitative pharmacokinetics, long-term maintenance of blood pressure, anemia in dialysis patients, and control of chronic pain.

Jorge Garza Jorge Garza is Operative Planning Manager for CEMEX, a global leader in the building materials industry, where he has worked for the past 23 years in areas such as Logistics, Supply Chain Management and Commercial Development. Over the past 15 years, Jorge has been proactively researching and developing a wide array of dynamic computer simulations, specifically in the supply chain process, which include: inventory management, production scheduling, distribution, facility management, transportation management and order scheduling and fulfillment. Currently he is collaborating with Monterrey Tech University (ITESM) in the project System Dynamics Applied to Resource Allocation for the Concrete Industry.

Oliver Grasl Oliver Grasl has been managing partner of Transentis Management Consulting since 1997. Transentis helps enterprises find new ways of creating value, transforming their business, and aligning their organization. Oliver’s current personal focus is on innovative business models and how they affect a company’s processes and IT-systems. He has used system dynamics and iThink extensively to model and simulate the dynamics of business models. Dr. Grasl regularly speaks at conferences and publishes papers in academic and trade journals. He is co-author of a book on project management (Prozessorientiertes Projektmanagement, Hanser 2004).

Mark Heffernan Mark Heffernan has a major interest in the application of simulation techniques in a broad range of business context. He has developed and run workshops in simulation and systems analysis throughout Australia, Europe, South East Asia and America. For more than 20 years, Mark headed up the systems modeling group at Evans & Peck and he is currently CEO of Dynamic Operations. Recently Mark has developed models for a pharmaceutical drug launch, an agent based model of the pharmacist workforce, and is working with large infrastructure firms to assist them in better understanding the dynamics associated with the take-up of services and products across Australia and New Zealand. Mark and his modeling group have won numerous awards and commendations across various industries including Defense, Health Services and Transport Infrastructure.

David Hoffman David Hoffman is an operations management consultant in Anchorage. He is a retired professor from the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) and continues his academic teaching and research as an adjunct faculty at University of Alaska Anchorage teaching simulation. At UAF, he also served as the Director of Development for the Arctic Region Supercomputing Center (ARSC). Dr. Hoffman‘s consulting has included clients in oil and gas, airlines IT/communications, manufacturing and for private institutes.

Peter Lacey Peter Lacey has played an active role in the System Dynamics community in the UK and internationally and has developed a wide range of expertise in the use of simulation and modeling in support of strategic consultancy projects. He is currently working on a number of national projects sponsored by the Department of Health including dementia modeling, financial modeling for end of life services and modeling the impact of prevention and early intervention services for older people, as well as local strategy and partnership development work within the health and social care field.  Peter is a founding partner of The Whole Systems Partnership (WSP).  WSP is a small but growing team who is also seeking innovative ways of enhancing and spreading awareness and competence in systems thinking and modeling through its training, action learning sets and online network environment as well as developing strategic partnerships with the academic sector to transfer knowledge and expertise into the world of consultancy.

Stephen Mecca Stephen Mecca is a Professor in the Department of Engineering-Physics-Systems at Providence College where he has served as Department Chair, Academic Vice President and Faculty member for more than 40 years.  Dr. Mecca has also served as a consultant for government and industry and has worked on projects for NASA and NATO.  He is author or co-author of many articles and books, including Problem Solving: A Systems Approach, and enjoys the challenge of complex multi- and inter-disciplinary problem solving.  Steve is a founding Director of Times Inc., a program to augment the number of minority students academically prepared for careers in STEM fields.  He has been part of the Ghana Literacy Project, which is actively involved in a number of education and sanitation projects in Ghana.  As a Visiting Scholar in the School of Engineering Sciences at the University of Ghana, Dr. Mecca brings students to Ghana to work on community service and rural engineering projects.  He has been using STELLA in his teaching and research since the original Apple version first appeared.

Mark Paich Mark Paich is widely regarded as one of the world’s foremost experts on the dynamic modeling methodology. Mark is a proven analyst and instructor and has published work in numerous journals and books including Management Science, Sloan Management Review and John Sterman’s Business Dynamics. With 30 years of modeling experience, Mark's clients include more than fifty Fortune 500 companies.  In 2002, Mark’s work with General Motors was awarded 2nd place in the Edelman Competition for best work in operations research and management science.  As co-author of Pharmaceutical Product Branding Strategies: Simulating Patient Flow and Portfolio Dynamics (2nd Edition, Informa Healthcare, 2009), Mark was presented with the Jay Wright Forrester Award in 2010.

Richard Palmer Richard Palmer is the Head and Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.  From 1979 to 2008, he was a professor at the University of Washington.   His primary areas of interest are in the application of structured planning approaches to water resources.  This includes impacts of climate change on water resources, drought planning, real-time water resource management, and the application of decision support to civil engineering management problems.  He helped develop the field of "shared vision modeling" in water resources planning and pioneered the use of "virtual drought exercises."

Corey Peck Corey Peck has been using iThink/STELLA for almost 20 years and has wide-ranging experience in model design, creation, analysis, and dissemination.  He is a recognized industry leader in dynamic modeling and was presented with the Jay Wright Forrester Award in 2010 for his work as a co-author of Pharmaceutical Product Branding Strategies: Simulating Patient Flow and Portfolio Dynamics (2nd Edition, Informa Healthcare, 2009).  Corey started his career with High Performance Systems (now isee systems), and has since gone on to found two highly successful dynamic modeling consultancies.  His current role as Managing Director of Lexidyne, LLC involves partner development, delivery of both public and in-house software training courses, and various client engagements. 

Steve Peterson Steve Peterson has been described as one of the “unsung heroes” of the dynamic modeling community. With 25+ years of experience in applying and teaching dynamic modeling, Steve has a broad range of knowledge and experience.  Client projects have ranged from strategy design and personnel management to finance, marketing analysis, and process-improvement. He has worked in a wide range of industries, including government (Defense, Energy), pharmaceuticals, foundations, automotive, and financial services. Much of Steve’s professional career was spent at High Performance Systems (now isee systems) where he was instrumental in the design and development of STELLA and iThink. Steve currently is on the visiting faculty at Dartmouth’s Thayer School of Engineering, where he teaches system dynamics.

Jim Rogers Jim Rogers works with organizations to improve strategic and operational performance by adopting Systems Thinking concepts, methodologies, tools and techniques. He has a 20-year association with High Performance Systems and isee systems. Though not formally trained in SD, Jim has collaborated with advanced practitioners to help his clients benefit from Systems Thinking insights. While working with IBM, he and Barry Richmond developed a model based workshop that simulated decision making issues executives would face as they executed IBM’s "CRM Transformation" in the early 90’s. The workshop was adopted worldwide, reaching an audience of over 2,000 IBM marketing executives. What the participants valued most from the experience was the insight they gained into the structure of and dynamic relationships among key decisions they would be required to make to drive profitability and customer satisfaction.

Matthias Ruth Matthias Ruth is Roy F. Weston Chair in Natural Economics, Founding Director of the Center for Integrative Environmental Research, Director of the Environmental Policy Program at the School of Public Policy, and Founding Co-Director of the Engineering and Public Policy Program at the University of Maryland. His teaching and research focus on dynamic modeling of natural resource use, industrial and infrastructure systems analysis, and environmental economics and policy. Applications of his work range from local to regional, to national and global environmental challenges, as well as the investment and policy opportunities these challenges present. Matthias has published 12 books and over 100 papers and book chapters in the scientific literature. He collaborates extensively with scientists and policy makers across the world.

Khalid Saeed Khalid Saeed is Professor of System Dynamics and Economics at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute. Trained at Massachusetts Institute of Technology in system dynamics and economic development, Dr. Saeed specializes in computer modeling and experimental analysis of developmental and organizational agendas.  He has worked as a consultant, among other organizations, to UN-ESCAP, Asian Development Bank, McKinsey & Company and UNDP and has published extensively on economic development and system dynamics. Khalid received the Jay Wright Forrester Award for his work on sustainable development in 1995. He has served also as a president of the System Dynamics Society and an associate editor of System Dynamics Review.

Peter Senge Peter Senge is Founding Chair of the Society for Organizational Learning (SoL) and a senior lecturer at MIT. The Journal of Business Strategy named him a “Strategist of the Century,” one of twenty-four men and women who have “had the greatest impact on the way we conduct business today.” He is the author or co-author of several books, including the widely acclaimed The Fifth Discipline and The Necessary Revolution. He is also a contributing author to Tracing Connections: Voices of Systems Thinkers (isee systems and Creative Learning Exchange 2010). Peter has lectured extensively throughout the world, translating the abstract ideas of systems theory into tools to create economic and organizational change. He has worked with leaders in business, education, health care and government.

Chris Soderquist Chris Soderquist has over 15 years experience as a system dynamics consultant and trainer, with a diverse set of clients from the private and public sectors.  Chris is a guest lecturer at the Darden School of Business (University of Virginia) in their Executive Education Program, and on the Boeing Engineering Leadership Program’s development team.  He is a contributing author to The Change Handbook (Berrett-Koehler, 1999) and has published several features in The Systems Thinker.  Chris’s most recent focus areas include public health and environmental policy, NGO strategic planning, and local community-based sustainability efforts.  Additionally, his research interests include linking dynamic modeling with dashboard/scorecard development, implementation, and monitoring.  

Pablo Vargas Pablo Vargas is a supply chain management process expert at CEMEX SAB de CV. He has designed and implemented planning and dispatching tools for ready mix, aggregates and asphalt operations in CEMEX Europe. Recently, he participated in the processes redefinition for concrete dispatching and vehicle scheduling in Mexico, implementing a system dynamics model to improve the visibility for regional dispatchers and increase on-time deliveries. Pablo has also worked in different companies in Mexico and the US as a consultant in supply chain optimization projects, including demand forecasting, tactical planning and vehicle scheduling. He is currently planning to expand the use of systems dynamics to improve plant and vehicle capacities planning in the cement and aggregates businesses.


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