Document Type

Unpublished Paper

Publication Date

12-2014

Abstract

System Dynamics offers a powerful vehicle to model environmental agendas and design operational interventions to mitigate environmental problems, provided the models of environmental issues have in them an appropriate policy space. Two limitations mar most modeling efforts to issue operational policy: 1) The problem definition might be linked too intimately to a preferred rather than a competing set of manifestations, hence the model it creates has no way to transform behavior to an alternative manifestation. 2) The policy parameters address societal rather than individual behavioral characteristics. Hence intervention is not possible through individual motivational instruments but is implied through power or moral appeal. Using the example of the limits to growth study, this paper illustrates how those limitations affect policy recommendations and how model structure can be modified to incorporate an appropriate policy space in it so its policy recommendations are operational rather than normative.

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