Core Course

A systems thinking perspective that crosses traditional disciplinary boundaries is needed to understand the complex adaptive systems of concern for threat management, emergency preparedness and response, homeland security and societal resiliency. Systems science provides the tools for developing critical thinking skills that can be used to analyze such systems. Students will become systems thinkers using various qualitative techniques of complex systems analysis, including network analysis, causal modeling, system dynamics, risk and resiliency analysis, and behavioral modeling. The course examines how these techniques are being applied to inform preparedness and planning decisions, in infrastructure, terrorism, supply chains, public health and other areas. Students will have the opportunity to apply these techniques in class projects and assignments. They also will interact with scientists and analysts from Argonne National Laboratory who are applying these techniques in their current work.