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Previously the Lupina Young Researchers Award

The Award

Given to outstanding papers dealing with health-related topics, authored by students or recent (past 5 years) graduates and presenting at the conference. The award is presented by the Health Policy Special Interest Group of the Society and was previously sponsored by the Lupina Foundation of Toronto, Canada.

The Prize

The award will be accompanied by free conference registration and housing from Saturday to Thursday at the Palmer House. The award will be presented to the recipient (or recipients) during the HPSIG meeting on the Sunday afternoon meeting just preceding the conference, and a brief announcement will also be made to all conference attendees at a plenary session.

This award will be given to people at early stages of their careers to encourage them to do further work in health system dynamics.


Lupina Young Researchers Award Committee

David Lounsbury (Health Thread Co-Chair)

John Ansah (Health Thread Co-Chair)

Mohammad Jalali (Health Policy SIG Rep)

Navid Ghaffarzadegan (Health Policy SIG Rep)


The work considered for this award must be accepted as a paper for presentation at the International System Dynamics Conference. Papers are self-nominated, and to be eligible, the author(s) must either be in graduate school or have completed their educational training no more than five years prior to paper submission.

Authors need not be members of the System Dynamics Society and may, in fact, specialize in other methodologies and use them in their submitted papers. But their work must:

  • Focus on dynamic phenomena in health systems and problems;

  • Demonstrate technical quality and clear presentation

  • Provide original insights derived from a dynamic analysis.

The winner(s) must be present at the HPSIG meeting to receive their prize, and be willing to discuss their winning work at that meeting. In the event that the winning paper represents the equal work of two young researchers, or if there is a tie among papers, the cash prize may be subdivided. 

Nomination Procedure To be considered for the prize you should follow the self-nomination procedure when you submit your paper to the conference, or no later than the conference submission deadline.

lupina young researchers award winners

Outstanding Community Service Award

The Award

The System Dynamics Society Outstanding Service Award recognizes individuals that have, on a volunteer basis, made exceptional contributions to the Society over an extended period of time.

The Society has a long and proud tradition of volunteer service and Julie Pugh, who volunteered as the first Executive Director, has inspired this award. Even after establishing a central office with a paid professional staff in 1996, the growth and development of the Society has been heavily dependent on the work of volunteers. To acknowledge this work, emphasize its importance in achieving Society goals, and highlight efforts that can inspire others, this service award was established in 2009.

It is awarded as often as once per year during the annual conference.

The Prize

During the announcement a personalized plaque will be presented with a very brief recitation of achievement. The award will also be announced in a System Dynamics Newsletter after the conference. Award recipients will be listed on the Society website.

Outstanding Community Service Award Committee

Jac Vennix 2019-2023
Roberta Spencer (Chair)  2020-2024
Robert Eberlein  2021-2025

Birgit Kopainsky 2022-2026 (partial term 2023-2026)
Rebecca Niles 2023-2027


The Community Services Award Committee will select individuals who have:

  • Made an unusually outstanding contribution to the Society in a way that benefits the development and advancement of system dynamics.

  • Exhibited the highest standards of service excellence, dedication, and accomplishment over a sustained period of time with:

    • an extended period of service, well beyond the normal term, and

    • a substantial amount of work performed above what would be considered normal for that role.

  • Taken initiative to move the Society forward.

  • Created positive results for Society members and the larger community of people interested in system dynamics.

  • Fostered a culture of service and responsibility and set a standard to inspire others.

In cases where the recipient is not attending the conference the presentation may be deferred to the following conference. In this case two awards may be presented at one conference. If the recipient is not able to attend either conference the award may be announced at one of the conferences and presented privately.

outstanding community service award winners

System Dynamics Lifetime Achievement Award

The Award

The System Dynamics Society occasionally recognizes people for making a significant contribution to a field or a practice over an extended period of time. This is the only award of the Society that is based on a body of work done over lifetime and not on a single article.

This award was formalized in 2012 and had been given very sparingly in the past. It cannot be given out posthumously. No nominations are solicited for the award and the Jay Forrester Award Committee decides on the winner.

The Prize

The award carries a plaque recognizing the achievement of the winner.

System Dynamics Lifetime Achievement Award Committee (aka JWF Committee)

John Sterman 2023-2027
Shayne Gary 2022-2026
Elke Husemann 2022-2026
Khalid Saeed  2021-2025
David Lane (Chair)  2019-2023

lifetime achievement award winners

System Dynamics Applications Award

The Award

The System Dynamics Applications Award is presented by the Society as often as every year for the best “real world” application of System Dynamics.

The best application is based primarily on demonstrated measurable benefit to an organization through the use of System Dynamics, and secondarily for new ideas that improve the art of applying System Dynamics, or for relating work to existing System Dynamics literature and/or other disciplines. The work must have been conducted within ten years of the submission deadline. 

The Prize

Winners are announced and a certificate is presented at the annual conference of the System Dynamics Society. The winner may also be invited to deliver a talk on the work which may subsequently be published in the System Dynamics Review.


System Dynamics Applications

Award Committee

Mark Paich  2021-2026
Mark Heffernan  2022-2026
Bradley Morrison (Chair)  2020-2025
Jack Homer  2020-2025


Criteria for eligible papers for the award include:

  1. Papers must be full-length and written for a System Dynamics user audience, in the English language in the original or after translation;

  2. If previously published, the papers must have been within seven years of the submission deadline;

  3. At least one named author must have been employed at the time of the work by the company or organization whose performance was improved by the System Dynamics modeling effort;

  4. The paper must not have won or been an announced finalist for a previous award from the System Dynamics Society; and

  5. Papers may be self-nominated.

Nominations, papers, and supporting information as well as any questions should be sent to the committee chair.

system dynamics applications award winners

Jay Wright Forrester Award

The Award

The Jay Wright Forrester Award is presented as often as once annually for the best contribution to the field of System Dynamics during the preceding five years.

Papers, articles, books, research or consulting reports, theses or other written material that have been published or are in publishable form in the English language, in the original or after translation, are eligible for consideration.

The Prize

The recipient(s) receive(s) a commemorative plaque and US$5,000. 

Jay Wright Forrester Committee

John Sterman 2023-2027
Shayne Gary 2022-2026
Elke Husemann 2022-2026
Khalid Saeed  2021-2025
David Lane (Chair) 2019-2023


The Society encourages nominations from the broad System Dynamics community. We rely on high-quality, thoughtful nominations, and we urge you to submit a nomination for any work that you deem worthy of consideration. Once received, the Awards Committee reviews the nominations, which may include follow-up with the nominator, and creates a shortlist from which it may select a winner.

Nominations for the Forrester Award may be made by anyone who uses System Dynamics or follows the progress of the field. A nomination must include the following information:

  • The name and contact information for the nominator

  • The name and contact information for the nominee(s)

  • A complete citation of the work nominated

  • A detailed letter supporting the nomination that explains why the nominated work represents the best contribution to the field of System Dynamics during the preceding five years

Submitting an effective nomination requires writing a letter that clearly conveys the importance and significance of the nominated work. Nominations should provide clear details about the motivation for nominating the specific work, and if helpful, cite books, papers, articles, research or consulting reports, theses, and/or other written material that might provide additional support. Prior awards included recipients recognized for papers, books, and software manuals.

  • Papers and articles – Papers published in peer-reviewed journals supported most of the Jay Wright Forrester Awards given to date. Nominators should meaningfully assess the contribution of the chosen paper to System Dynamics, as well as to other fields or to specific policies as appropriate. If the author has written a series of papers on the same topic, then the nominator should select the most deserving paper from the portfolio, describe its individual merits, and provide further context about how the work fits into the portfolio of work and the merits of the portfolio.

  • Books – Books considered for the award should fully explain an important set of ideas or fully communicates a coherent research theme, without the need for nominators to cite a variety of related work by the same or other authors. Nominations should convincingly describe the substantive contributions made by the book to System Dynamics. Examples of books the Society recognized with a Jay Wright Forrester Award include Business Dynamics (2000), the definitive contemporary textbook in the field by John Sterman (winner in 2002) and Group Model Building (1996) by Jac Vennix (winner in 1999).

  • Software – Software per se is not eligible for the Forrester Award, but important software contributions as described in a user’s guide or a book are eligible. For example, Barry Richmond received the 1989 Jay Wright Forrester Award for the Academic User’s Guide to STELLA, which described the highly innovative software and effectively communicated the core concepts of System Dynamics with clarity.

We look forward to receiving your nomination!

jay w forrester award winners

Dana Meadows Award

The Award

The Dana Meadows Award of the System Dynamics Society is given annually for the best paper by a student presented at the annual System Dynamics Conference. Established in 2001, the prize celebrates and recognizes high-quality student work in the field of System Dynamics. In addition to an Award winner, several papers may be selected for honorable mention. 

The Prize

The Award winner will receive a cash prize of US $2500. The winner may receive up to US$1500 for conference registration plus travel expenses. Honorable Mention recipients will receive a cash prize of US $500.


Dana Meadows Award Committee

John Sterman 2020-2025
Krystyna Stave 2021-2025
Florian Kapmeier 2020-2024
Tom Fiddaman (Chair) 2018-2022
Richard Dudley 2018-2022


Submission Requirements

An Award-worthy paper will show creativity, originality, and clarity in the way that SD is applied to a problem and communicated to its audience. Papers should meet all the standards of good SD work including dynamic structures with feedback, evidence-based reasoning and realistic decision-making rules for the actors and entities (in a model-based paper). The following guidelines should be used as a checklist to be completed before submitting a paper for the Award.

  1. Any paper authored by an eligible student and accepted for the conference can be considered for the Award, whether presented in a plenary, parallel, or poster session.
    • An eligible student is anyone who, at the time of writing the manuscript, is enrolled in an accredited program of study in any subject and is not a previous winner of the Award.
    • The paper can be co-authored with other eligible students. If such a co-authored paper is selected as the winner, the authors will share the prize equally. Papers may also be co-authored with a non-student (such as a faculty advisor or consultant), but only if accompanied by a statement from the advisor that the intellectual content arises from the student’s own work. In all such cases, the student must appear as the first author and non-students do not receive a share of the prize.
    • Students are strongly encouraged to attend the conference and present their work. Only under exceptional circumstances will the winner or honorable mentions be recognized without attendance. A winner who is unable to attend in person will not receive travel compensation. Registration will be compensated for a winner who attends virtually or in person.
  2. Model-based papers should meet the Preferred Model Reporting Requirements as detailed in the preceding document link and must include a separate file with the fully documented model able to reproduce all of the runs mentioned in the paper.
    • In most cases, this will mean submitting a model and ancillary files in the native format of an SD simulation software package, or source code in some other language.
    • Models may be submitted by email to the award committee where confidentiality agreements preclude use of the conference submission system.
  3. Methodology- and Experiment-based papers should include the reasons for the research, the fully documented steps required to replicate or establish the reproducibility of the results reported, and any significant improvement or novelty of the results relative to the current state of knowledge.
  4. Papers must not exceed 7,500 words. A word count must be provided immediately below the abstract. However, essential documentation or model code can appear in a technical appendix or additional files without adding to the word count.

Nomination Procedure

To be considered for the Award you should follow the self-nomination procedure when you submit your paper to the conference, or no later than the conference submission deadline. You will be asked to affirm that you meet the requirements for the prize and agree to the review terms.

If your paper is co-authored, you will be asked to identify which authors are students. Non-student co-authors must each present a signed statement as part of the application, indicating that the student author(s) is(are) responsible for the content of the paper, and the intellectual content of the paper derives from the work of the student(s). The statement should specify submission number and the title of the paper. A sample statement is available for reference in the Submission System. To submit the statement, click on the submission in the Web Portal, “Upload new or updated files”, and attach the statement in the “Award Affirmation Documents” section as a pdf (or zip of multiple pdfs if more than one non-student is a co-author).

Faculty Advisor Comments

The Award Committee encourages the student’s Faculty Advisor to submit a brief statement of evaluation and support for the paper. The Dana Meadows Student Award is funded through an endowment established by the System Dynamics Society. The Society gratefully acknowledges the support of all those donors who have contributed to the fund and in particular Jane and Allen Boorstein who generously helped establish the award in 2001. 

a note about the award

“Dana knew better than most of us that the leverage points for changing a system often lie far from the symptoms of difficulty. She would understand that an application of system dynamics to issues apparently not connected to sustainability, including corporate applications, might very well promote her goals, not only her goals of creating a sustainable and just society but of promoting integrity and honesty in our analysis of problems, whatever and wherever they may be – that is, in the way we create and test our models, mental and formal.”

“On occasions when I might be tempted to cut corners in modeling work (what modeler hasn’t faced these), envisioning Dana across the table, posing her gentle but piercing queries, was one of the things that helped keep me honest.”

The Society’s Dana Meadows Award symbolizes the Society’s commitment to students in two ways. It brings recognition to the very best student work. It also honors, in an enduring way, the life and work of Dana Meadows.

Dana Meadows is remembered as an eloquent sustainability advocate and environmental writer. But she was also, and arguably foremost, a teacher — one exceptionally committed to her students and their development not only intellectually but in all ways. Honoring Dana through this Award recognizes her work as an inspiring teacher and mentor of young people and sets a standard for what good modeling is. The Award will help develop the next generation of systems thinkers and modelers according to her ideals. Her unusually high level of integrity in all things extended to high standards for modeling, for documentation, and for exposing assumptions. The words of two of her (now distinguished) former students embody the spirit and intention of the Award:


dana meadows award winners