System Dynamics as Model-Based Theory Building

Item Type Journal paper

This paper introduces model-based theory building as a feature of system dynamics (SD) with large potential. It presents a systemic approach to actualizing that potential, thereby opening up a new perspective on theory building in the social sciences. The question addressed is if and how SD enables the construction of high-quality theories. This contribution is based on field experiment type projects which have been focused on model-based theory building, specifically the construction of a middle-range theory - not a general one. The process of model building and validation is analysed from a theory-building perspective. The resulting theory is evaluated by means of a set of criteria for high-quality theories. As a conclusion, the insighths thus gained are presented and condensed in a tentative set of heuristic principles for model-based theory building.

Authors Schwaninger, Markus & Grösser, Stefan N.
Journal or Publication Title Systems Research and Behavioral Science
Language English
Keywords System Dynamics; Modelling and Simulation; Model-based Theory Building; Case Study
Subjects business studies
HSG Classification contribution to scientific community
Refereed Yes
Date 1 July 2008
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell
Place of Publication Chichester
Volume 25
Number 4
Page Range 447-465
Number of Pages 19
ISSN 1092-7026
Depositing User Prof. em. Markus Schwaninger
Date Deposited 14 Oct 2008 16:56
Last Modified 23 Aug 2016 11:04


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Schwaninger, Markus & Grösser, Stefan N. (2008) System Dynamics as Model-Based Theory Building. Systems Research and Behavioral Science, 25 (4). 447-465. ISSN 1092-7026

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