Special Issue "System Dynamics and Quantitative Methods for the Analysis of Societal Threats"

A special issue of Systems (ISSN 2079-8954).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2021) | Viewed by 1504

Special Issue Editors

1. Department of Research, Link Campus University, 00165 Rome, Italy
2. System Dynamics Group and The Modeling & Simulation Lab, Link Campus University, 00165 Rome, Italy
3. President of SYDIC, The System Dynamics’ Society Italian Chapter, Rome, Italy
4. Policy Council Member and VP Chapters and SIGs (2019-2021) of The System Dynamics Society, Littleton, MA 01460-0542, USA
Interests: system dynamics; systems thinking; ABM; Social network Analysis; modeling and simulation; model driven architectures; BPM/BPR; economics; finance; systems analysis;operations research; public policy; public governance; policy modeling;change management; strategic decision making; Agenda 2030; SDGs; sustainability; decision support systems; smart model-based governance; project management; risk management; innovation; cyber risk; natural resources management; climate change
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Department of Business Administration, University of Macedonia, 546 36 Thessaloniki, Greece
Interests: system dynamics modeling; multiple-criteria decision analysis; decision analysis
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Complex System Research Group & System Dynamics Group, Computer Engineering Department, Polytechnic School - University of São Paulo, São Paulo 05508-010, Brazil
Interests: software & system engineering; complex system; modeling; simulation; system dynamics; agent-based
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Recent years have seen threats to societal and democratic values such as online election manipulation, radicalization, “normalization” of extreme behavior, and the re-emergence of racist phenomena across all spectrums of social life. Thus, it has become critical to design policies that mitigate these threats without producing unintended consequences or infringing on fundamental rights like the right to free speech and privacy.

We believe that solving these issues could benefit from the application of quantitative and simulation methods regardless of whether such concepts are not easily quantified. Examples of such approaches are neither new nor isolated. For example, Sandberg (2000) used System Dynamics to investigate the routes of democracy’s global diffusion from 1800 until 2000. Stave (2002) used simulation to illustrate how public participation in environmental decisions can be improved, while Hirsch et al. (2007) modeled how educational reform can impact society.

The methodology is not limited to such general societal issues; specific problems are also addressed. Armenia and Sellito asserted that quantitative methods can be used to detect acts of opinion manipulation in online forums (2014), Armenia and Tsaples (2017) use epidemiological models to analyze how individual behavior can help or hinder the diffusion of cyber threats and finally, Pruyt et al. (2015) used System Dynamics to help policymakers design and test the effectiveness of policies addressed to mitigate the consequences of foreign fighters.

Moreover, such issues are not addressed only through simulation and System Dynamics. Armenia and Sellitto (2014) outlined a framework that combines simulation, network analysis and control theory with the purpose of supporting regional impact analysis. Finally, other methodologies such as Game Theory have a long tradition of dealing with issues from voting (Brams, 2008); (Kling, Kunegis, Hartmann, Strohmaier, & Staab, 2015) to designing strategies to search communities in networks (Narayanam & Narahari, 2012).

The Special Issue is focused on the application of such methods to subjects that lie in the intersection of society and democracy. Papers are sought that use these methods in, but not limited to, the following areas:

  • Radicalization and measures to prevent it
  • Online bullying
  • Online meddling of elections
  • Racism in society and racism in sports

Methods could include but are not limited to the following:

  • Game theory
  • Graph theory
  • System dynamics
  • Agent-based modeling
  • Hybrid approaches and combinations of all the above

Dr. Stefano Armenia
Dr. George Tsaples
Dr. Eduardo Ferreira Franco
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Systems is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • Societal Issues
  • Society and democracy
  • Quantitative methods Simulation

Published Papers

There is no accepted submissions to this special issue at this moment.
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