ASU Center for Organization Research and Design

Systems Thinking for Designing Sustainable Product Service Systems: a Case Study Using a System Dynamics Approach

by Maryam Afshar; David Wang

Jan 1, 2010

This paper proposes a system dynamics approach for the design and development of sustainable product-service systems (PSSs) to address the structural complexity inherent in PSS design. We believe system dynamics is a valuable tool in identifying the main components of a PSS, their relationships, and the dynamic behavior of the system in its broader context. Easy to understand and interactive simulations of system dynamics can bring the most important properties of a PSS into focus and therefore facilitate the design decision making process. Simulations also provide an opportunity for exploring the environmental impacts and market performance of a design concept quantitatively over a long period of time. This paper illustrates the application of system dynamics for PSS design through a case study of an alternative Clean Transport Service called CTS.

Systems Thinking for Designing Sustainable Product Service Systems: a Case Study Using a System Dynamics Approach