Population dynamics models

You will probably by now appreciate that you have a variety of options when it comes to modelling population dynamics. You can adopt a lumped approach in System Dynamics, using a compartment to represent population size, and flows to represent demographic processes of reproduction, migration and mortality. Or, you can adopt a disaggregated System Dynamics approach, using a compartment-flow structure to represent the dynamics of one age/size/sex class, embedded in a multiple-instance submodel to represent all the classes. In this case, you will need to have additional flows for modelling the movement of individuals between age or size classes. Or you use a population submodel to represent every individual in the population, adding in rules for specifying the creation of new individuals and the death of existing ones. In this case, it is optional whether your model contains any System Dynamics at all: you might decide to use a compartment-flow structure to represent, for example, the body weight of each individual, but you certainly don’t have to.