Discussion Forums and Wikis

Books, Courses and Tutorials

  • Business Dynamics by John Sterman is the definitive system dynamics text, and includes many Vensim models.
  • Erik Pruyt at the Delft University of Technology has written an electronic case book titled “Small System Dynamics Models for BIG Issues”. It can be downloaded for free at
  • Hartmut Bossel’s System Zoo series is an excellent introduction to modeling, particularly in the natural sciences, and includes model listings in Vensim notation. The models are linked here.
  • Modeling the Environment by Andy Ford is a good introduction to models of the natural world and the interface with policy; most models are reproducible or provided in Vensim.
  • Juan Martin Garcia has published the book Theory and Practical Exercises of System Dynamics that introduces system dynamics and provides a number of detailed examples with in Vensim for the construction of models. The book is also available in Spanish.
  • Craig W. Kirkwood at Arizona State University maintains a System Dynamics Resource page with a short tutorial for Vensim PLE.
  • An older but still useful text is Introduction to System Dynamics Modeling with DYNAMO,  by G.P. Richardson and A.L. Pugh (The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1981).
  • System Dynamics resulted from the pioneering efforts of Jay W. Forrester to apply the engineering principles of feedback and control to social systems. One of the earliest, and still one of the best references in this field is Industrial Dynamics by Jay W. Forrester (The MIT Press,30 Cambridge, MA, 1961).
  • A simpler introduction to System Dynamics along with a number of exercises is Principles of Systems by Jay W. Forrester (The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1968).
  • Another useful resource, containing a number of interesting real world examples is System Enquiry, A System Dynamic Approach by Eric F. Wolstenholme (John Wiley & Sons, New York 1990). This book also gives a brief introduction to what, in this manual, is called policy optimization.
  • A very popular and readable book covering many conceptual issues in thinking and acting systemically on problems is The Fifth Discipline by Peter M. Senge (Doubleday, New York, 1990).
  • An interesting and controversial work, World Dynamics by Jay W. Forrester (The MIT Press, Cambridge, MA, 1971; second edition, 1973) discusses growth in a finite world. This model is supplied with Vensim.
  • Donella Meadows’ Thinking in Systems is a very accessible introduction to systems concepts.
  • MIT Open Courseware contains several system dynamics classes – look for 15.871 to 15.879.
  • Ted Pavlic at Arizona State University has a whole semester course recorded and uploaded to YouTube. He also has a collection of videos providing extra help outside of lectures that are useful.

Models Online

In addition to the models provided with the books and tutorials above, the following resources are available:

System Dynamics Resources

Ventana Systems UK Ltd. — Sable

Developed by Ventana Systems UK Ltd., Sable is a programming environment used in creating application interfaces for Vensim, similar to the Venapp builder.  Sable has a number of features which make it unique and useful.  You can program web-based interfaces that run over intranets or the internet.  Learn more about Sable.

International Vensim Distributors

See full listings on the Contacts page.

Other Vensim-related Resources

Juan Martin Garcia is a professor at Universidad Politecnica de Catalunya and offers distcance course (in Spanish) on System Dynamics and Vensim.

Email :
Web :

Marek Susta has published Systems Thinking Guide (Pruvodce systemovym myslenim) – in Czech language. The book will guide you through secrets of human perception, cognitive biases and methodology of uncovering systems structure to show importance and beauty of systems approach in solving everyday big and small problems.

Email :
Web :

Antonio Barron in Spain is an avid Vensim user and knowledgeable about many issues in system dynamics. He is happy to share his knowledge. You can contact him at:
Phone: 34 629 13 19 31

L. Gustavo Sala Espiell in Argentina is a system dynamics enthusiast who is keen to spread the concepts of system dynamics and learning organizations through Argentina. He has worked in the petrochemical industry for the past two decades and studied system dynamics through the MIT distance learning program. He gives graduate seminars and teaches postgraduate course at La Plata University and offers public workshops on system dynamics. He can be contacted at:
Phone: 54 221 484 1379

For German information on Vensim, go to: RBA Consultants have used Vensim to develop a number of Management Decision Support Systems.