A system dynamics perspective for transportation planning under uncertainty

May 27, 2020

3:00-4:30 PM EDT/12:00-1:30 PM PDT

Session Recording - Presentation Slides

Whether they call it that or not, MPOs do a lot of planning under deep uncertainty. Modelers need a quick way to look at very different scenarios. In this webinar, we’ll talk about the larger context of planning under uncertainty, and more specifically about how system dynamics concepts can allow for a better appreciation of the dynamic nature of features of the transportation system. After a simple exercise exploring these concepts by looking at road safety statistics during pandemic-induced decreases in VMT, we’ll wrap up with an open discussion about how participants might use these ideas in their work, whether with emerging modes, uncertainty in demand, or other planning challenges.

This session was moderated by Hannah Rakoff, Scott Smith, Ian Berg, and Jingsi Shaw of the U.S. DOT Volpe National Transportation Systems Center, with panelist Jeremy Raw of FHWA’s Office of Planning.

Event Photo

This causal loop diagram should be interpreted as one would a photo of sticky notes after a meeting. It is not complete, validated, or even agreed-on by all participants. Rather, it serves as an example of what can be achieved with a short group model building exercise.