A structured modelling approach to simulating dynamic behaviours in complex organisations

Min Zhen, Tariq Masood, Aysin Rahimifard, Richard Weston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


This article reports a case study application of a systematic approach to modelling complex organisations, centred on simulation modelling (SM). The approach leads to populated instances of complementary model types, in ways that systematically capture, validate and facilitate various uses of organisational understandings, knowledge and data normally distributed amongst multiple knowledge holders. The model-driven approach to decision making enables improved manufacturing responsiveness. Literature on modelling technologies relevant to manufacturing systems organisation design and change is presented, as is literature on production planning and control. This provides a rationale for the development of a new modelling methodology which combines the use of enterprise, causal loop and SM. Subsequently, this article describes how in the case of a specific manufacturing enterprise the combined modelling techniques have informed the choice of alternative production planning and control policies. An example enterprise model of a capacitor manufacturing company is illustrated as derivative causal-loop models that structure and enable the design and use of a general purpose simulation model.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)496-509
Number of pages14
JournalProduction Planning and Control
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 28 Sept 2009


  • combined simulation
  • decision support systems
  • dynamic modelling
  • manufacturing
  • process-oriented


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