Introduction to System Dynamics Modeling

By Prof. Jayendran Venkateswaran   |   IIT Bombay
Learners enrolled: 38
About the course:
This course will introduce students to systems thinking and system dynamics (SD) methodology, to model, simulate, analyze, understand and discuss complex issues. SD focusses on the structure and dynamic behavior of systems composed of interacting feedback loops. The system structure is captured using causal loop diagrams (CLDs) or stock-flow diagrams (SFDs).  
This course will introduce model-building using CLDs and SFDs notations. Basic model structures such as positive feedback or reinforcing structure, negative feedback or balancing structure, S-Shaped growth structure, structures producing oscillations, overshoot and collapse will be discussed. Essential modeling elements such as delays and (nonlinear) table functions will also be discussed. Examples and scenarios will be drawn from various business, social, economic, environmental and ecological systems. 

INTENDED AUDIENCE : All Engineering students

INDUSTRY SUPPORT : TCS, General Mills, etc
Course Status : Upcoming
Course Type : Elective
Duration : 8 weeks
Start Date : 23 Jan 2023
End Date : 17 Mar 2023
Exam Date : 26 Mar 2023 IST
Enrollment Ends : 30 Jan 2023
Category :
  • Management Studies
Credit Points : 2
Level : Undergraduate/Postgraduate

Page Visits

Course layout

Week 1 : Introduction to Systems Dynamics/ Systems Thinking Causal Loop Diagramming
Week 2 : Stock-Flow Diagrams and Graphical Integration/ Differentiation
Week 3 : Dynamics of Simple Structures: Reinforcing loops and Balancing Loops
Week 4 : S-Shaped Growth Dynamics; Innovation Diffusion
Week 5 : Modeling Delays, Modeling Oscillations
Week 6 : Nonlinearities and Table Functions
Week 7 : Model Verification and Validation; Example 
Week 8 : Modeling Exercises, Case Studies, and course wrap-up

Books and references

1. John Sterman, Business Dynamics: Systems Thinking and Modeling for a Complex World, McGraw-Hill (2000).
2. Craig W. Kirkwood, System Dynamics: A Quick Introduction, Arizona State University (1998) [ Available online at: http://www.public.asu.edu/~kirkwood/sysdyn/SDIntro/SDIntro.htm ]
3. Michael R. Goodman, Study Notes in System Dynamics, Pegasus Communication (1989)
4. Online learning material: https://www.systemdynamics.org/distance-learning

Instructor bio

Prof. Jayendran Venkateswaran

IIT Bombay
Prof. Jayendran Venkateswaran (JV) is a Professor of Industrial Engineering and Operations Research at IIT Bombay, where he has been a faculty since 2005. His current research and teaching interests are in modelling and analysis of complex socio-economic systems, systems modelling and simulation, last mile supply chain ecosystem, and energy access. Over the years, he has worked with various multi-national industries, helping them solve their problems using sound Operations Research methods. He loves tinkering with Python/ R/ other open source tools. He is passionate about popularising OR, and Systems Thinking to help further the understanding of complex systems. JV has taught multiple courses on Systems Dynamics and Simulation at IIT Bombay in the past 14 years

Course certificate

The course is free to enroll and learn from. But if you want a certificate, you have to register and write the proctored exam conducted by us in person at any of the designated exam centres.
The exam is optional for a fee of Rs 1000/- (Rupees one thousand only).
Date and Time of Exams: 26 March 2023 Morning session 9am to 12 noon; Afternoon Session 2pm to 5pm.
Registration url: Announcements will be made when the registration form is open for registrations.
The online registration form has to be filled and the certification exam fee needs to be paid. More details will be made available when the exam registration form is published. If there are any changes, it will be mentioned then.
Please check the form for more details on the cities where the exams will be held, the conditions you agree to when you fill the form etc.


Average assignment score = 25% of average of best 6 assignments out of the total 8 assignments given in the course.
Exam score = 75% of the proctored certification exam score out of 100

Final score = Average assignment score + Exam score

YOU WILL BE ELIGIBLE FOR A CERTIFICATE ONLY IF AVERAGE ASSIGNMENT SCORE >=10/25 AND EXAM SCORE >= 30/75. If one of the 2 criteria is not met, you will not get the certificate even if the Final score >= 40/100.

Certificate will have your name, photograph and the score in the final exam with the breakup.It will have the logos of NPTEL and IIT Bombay.It will be e-verifiable at nptel.ac.in/noc.

Only the e-certificate will be made available. Hard copies will not be dispatched.

Once again, thanks for your interest in our online courses and certification. Happy learning.

- NPTEL team

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