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Soft system dynamics methodology (SSDM): combining soft systems methodology (SSM) and system dynamics (SD)

Rodriguez-Ulloa, Ricardo and Paucar-Caceres, Alberto (2005) Soft system dynamics methodology (SSDM): combining soft systems methodology (SSM) and system dynamics (SD). Systemic practice and action research, 18 (3). pp. 303-334. ISSN 1573-9295

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Abstract

Soft System Dynamics Methodology (SSDM), a systemic methodology product of the combination of two widely used systems-based methodologies from two different systems thinking paradigms, Systems Dynamics (SD) and Soft Systems Methodology (SSM), is presented. The paper argues that by combining some of SD and SSM stages, within the intellectual framework proposed by SSDM, a methodology developed by one of the authors1 much can be gained in a systemic intervention to tackle complex social problematic situations. A framework for comparing the ontological, epistemological and methodological principles of SD, SSM and SSDM is proposed and the synthesizing and dialectical role of SSDM is advanced. The 10 stages of SSDM are outlined and illustrated by an application on a small Peruvian company; and a set of conclusions and points for further research are discussed.

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