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Designs for the complementary use of system dynamics and discrete-event simulation

Morgan, J. and Howick, S. and Belton, V. (2011) Designs for the complementary use of system dynamics and discrete-event simulation. In: Proceedings of the 2011 Winter Simulation Conference (WSC). Winter Simulation Conference Proceedings . IEEE, New York, pp. 2710-2722. ISBN 9781457721090

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Abstract

Discrete-Event Simulation (DES) and System Dynamics (SD) are popular modeling approaches that have been successfully applied in a wide range of situations for various purposes. The two approaches can be viewed as complementary, and show potential for combination. Examining multimethodology literature allows us to develop a modeling framework that considers possible designs for such a combination. The aim of this paper is to apply, reflect on and develop this framework through an intervention that lends itself to both approaches, and to explore how DES and SD can be combined in practice. Models under development with a radiotherapy center to explore the impact of altering patient treatment regimes in response to the adoption of new, more complex, technology are discussed. The potential to combine DES and SD in a way which is both complementary and synergistic is explored, and this paper reflects on the experience to date with regard to the proposed methodology.