System Dynamics
Research Project

Food systems research

Participatory modeling Zambia
Birgit Kopainsky

Main content

Food systems are socio-ecological systems (SES) that span a wide range of activities such as production, packaging, selling and consumption of food and involve a multitude of stakeholders. Important food system outcomes are food security as well as social and environmental welfare. In addition to sustainability concerns, rapid changes in the technological, demographic, environmental and economic landscape in Europe and abroad have made resilience an important concept.

In this context, we use system dynamics modeling, for example, to:

  • Identify key processes driving sustainability and resilience of food system outcomes in various regional contexts.
  • Identify pathways towards sustainability and resilience in various regional contexts.
  • Design policies that maximize synergies and minimize trade-offs between food system outcomes.

Work that focuses particularly on food system transformation in developing countries uses system dynamics modeling, for example, to: