“The Shrimp Commodity System Learning Lab” was designed for individuals seeking to build their syste
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“The Shrimp Commodity System Learning Lab” was designed for individuals seeking to build their systems thinking muscle and policy-design skills. It has been used successfully in undergraduate and graduate courses where business sustainability and/or system dynamics applications are emphasized. The format offers learners a progression of interactive experiences on which to build an understanding of the issues of the global shrimp industry system, including wild fisheries and aquaculture, its financial instability, the environmental issues it faces, and how individual policy alternatives can be tested, analyzed and combined to address industry performance.
The Learning Lab has two learning pathways: The Systems Thinking Basics course shows the application of systems thinking and stock-flow mapping as tools to hypothesize and express underlying system feedback structures contributing to issues such as resource depletion and environmental pollution. The Policy and Scenarios Advanced course deepens understanding of systems behavioral patterns by presenting policies which address commodity systems behavior challenges and by using alternative scenarios dealing with market forces as tests. Students in a course could be asked to provide their recommendations for a policy set which best achieves multiple performance objectives: industry wide profit growth for the two industry sectors, achieve coastal effluents improvements, and avoid large oscillations of shrimp populations and resource depletion in the wild fishery.
Additional information is available in the Technical Note (UVA-OM-1428) that offers information for individual preparation assignments, suggestions for Group workshop activities, helpful causality notes for instructors, and insights into policy analyses. To obtain this Note or request further information about related shrimp industry cases, (UVA OM 1388 and 1389), contact Darden Business Publishing at http://store.darden.virginia.edu/contactus
The Learning Lab was developed by Chris Soderquist, Pontifex Consulting and Professor Robert D. Landel of the Darden School, University of Virginia and is based on original research from Donella Meadows Institute (formerly Sustainability Institute) and Pontifex Consulting.
Copyright © 2009 by the University of Virginia Darden School Foundation, Charlottesville, VA.