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Why?

On the one hand, there is a large need for integrative approaches including advanced computational modeling to provide insights into and help address the dynamically complex problems our societies face. On the other hand, however, there are very limited training opportunities addressing this need for social and natural science PhD candidates (and junior researchers), especially beyond the master level. Our main goal is to provide PhD candidates with a methodological or content-related focus on system dynamics the opportunity to receive high quality training and access to key faculty and other candidates across Europe within the field of system dynamics and related application areas. While in Europe there are many (potential) students, faculty, capabilities, and resources for system dynamics training, they are dispersed across different universities. As a result it is difficult to offer a well-rounded system dynamics training within individual universities in system dynamics (let alone an entire PhD education). This is different from the situation in the United States, where complete PhD programs in system dynamics exist within a single institution (e.g. at MIT and the University of Albany). By combining our efforts, capabilities, and resources, students have the opportunity to get access to these different faculty, other students. While we initially focus our efforts on the existing body of about 20 PhD candidates from our institutions, the next aim will be to establish high-quality inflow of candidates also from other universities.