Additional Resources

This is a list of external website links for learning more about systems.

Jump to:

Complex Systems Organizations

Santa Fe Institute

Maybe the first institute created to focus on complex systems and interdisciplinary research. The book “Complexity” is mostly about the people who started this institute.

New England Complex Systems Institute

The New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI) has been instrumental in the development of complex systems science and its applications. NECSI conducts research, education, knowledge dissemination, and community development around the world for the promotion of the study of complex systems and its application for the betterment of society.

Systems Dynamics

System dynamics is a methodology for studying and managing complex feedback systems, such as one finds in business and other social systems.

Swarm Development Group Wiki

A resource for agent- and individual-based modelers and the home of Swarm.

IEEE Systems Council

The IEEE Systems Council integrates IEEE activities regarding aspects of multiple disciplines and specialty areas associated with the engineering of systems

Wolfram's New Kind of Science (NKS) Site

Even though Wolfram doesn’t use the term “systems” in most of his ideas, his work on cellular automata is very systems related. It is in a little different direction, but is very interesting.

Systems Process Theory (SPT)

Possibly the most general systems theory being developed

Tools for Modeling Systems

Agent-based Modeling Tool List

List of Agent based modeling tools


Useful and free open source toolkit for agent based modeling developed at Argonne National Laboratory and The University of Chicago

isee Systems

A developer of “Systems Thinking Software”. They have two products, Stella and iThink. They also teach systems modeling classes

SimAgent Toolkit

The SimAgent toolkit (originally called SIM_AGENT) provides a range of resources for research and teaching related to the development of interacting agents in environments of various degrees and kinds of complexity.


MASON is a fast discrete-event multiagent simulation library core in Java, designed to be the foundation for large custom-purpose Java simulations.


Vensim is used for developing, analyzing, and packaging high quality dynamic feedback models. It is a commercial package.

Systems Study at Universities

Iowa State Agentbased Computational Economics

Agent based Computational Economics at Iowa State University. Agent-based computational economics (ACE) is the computational study of economic processes modeled as dynamic systems of interacting agents. Here “agent” refers broadly to a bundle of data and behavioral methods representing an entity constituting part of a computationally constructed world.

Portland University Program

The System Science program encompasses both applications and theory-oriented aspects of the field. It is designed to prepare students for professional practice in industrial, governmental, and public service organizations and for research and teaching in academic institutions.

CSCS at University of Michigan

Center for the Study of Complex Systems.

Genetic and Evolutionary Computation

The Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference (GECCO) will present the latest high-quality results in thegrowing field of genetic and evolutionary computation. Topics include: genetic algorithms, genetic programming, evolutionstrategies, evolutionary programming, real-world applications, learning classifier systems and other geneticsbased machinelearning, evolvable hardware, artificial life, adaptive behavior, ant colony optimization, swarm intelligence, biologicalapplications, evolutionary robotics, coevolution, artificial immune systems, and more.

System Courses and Conferences

Complex System Models in the Social Sciences

A Summer program in Quantitative Methods of Social Research by InterUniversity Consortium for Political and Social Research. (ICPSR)

Agentbased Compuatational Economics (ACE)

Econ 308 is a fun course stressing a “virtual reality” approach to the study of economic processes.

Wolfram Summer Class

Wolfram’s own class based on his New Kind of Science book.

Changing the World in Systemic Ways

Value Investing

Intro to “value investing” (or socially responsible investing) in Wikipedia.   While often difficult to determine the full impact of any corporation, if we invest only in companies that we feel are improving the world, that could influence stock price and company behavior.


Helps support business that contributes to an equitable and ecologically sustainable economy.

Natural Capitalism

In this groundbreaking blueprint for a new economy, three leading business visionaries explain how the world is on the verge of a new industrial revolution—one that promises to transform our fundamental notions about commerce and its role in shaping our future. Natural Capitalism describes a future in which business and environmental interests increasingly overlap, and in which businesses can better satisfy their customers’ needs, increase profits, and help solve environmental problems all at the same time.


Allows regular people to lend small amounts of money to small businesses in the developing world.

Radical Middle

An interesting alternative to typical dogmatic political thinking. Tries to find political solutions in an unbiased manner that don’t fit into the traditional “conservative” or “liberal” ideology.