Portland State University. Systems Science Ph. D. Program
Term of Graduation
Date of Publication
Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Systems Science
System theory, System analysis
1 online resource (x, 166 pages)
As simple visual diagrams of key dynamics in complex systems, causal-loop diagrams could meet known needs in settings such as theory-based program evaluation and qualitative research. Methods for developing and using causal-loop diagrams, however, are underdeveloped. This dissertation comprises three articles that advance these methods. The first paper describes a systematic review of evaluation studies utilizing causal-loop diagramming to illustrate program theory. The second paper pilots an improved method for systematically generating causal-loop diagrams from qualitative data. The third paper presents a protocol for an interview-based approach to mapping mental models. Together, this research contributes to recognizing the modeler as co-creator, reframes the relationship between intervention and context, and enables more diverse uses for causal-loop diagrams. Ultimately, this research serves to improve the rigor and transparency of methods for developing causal-loop diagrams, broadening their potential applications for modeling, research, and evaluation.
© 2021 Erin Suzanne Kenzie
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Kenzie, Erin Suzanne, "Get Your Model Out There: Advancing Methods for Developing and Using Causal-Loop Diagrams" (2021). Dissertations and Theses. Paper 5664.