top of page
Image by Thomas Bormans



    Intended for students enrolling in System Dynamics and Integrative Management, this syllabus contains information specific to the course. It is a definitive record of the course's primary characteristics and the learning outcomes that a typical student can reasonably be expected to achieve if they take full advantage of the available learning opportunities. This document also serves as a reference for academic and support staff, internal and external examiners, and for future course monitoring and review.


    Course Title

    System Dynamics and Integrative Management

    Subject Area


    Course Code

    MGMT 51011

    Course Level






    Methods of Delivery




    Expected Length

    5.0 Weeks

    Class Meetings

    To be determined


    Dr. Ali Kamali


    Computer Software: Any computer software that aids learning.


    Text 1: CM

    Title: Contemporary Management

    Author(s): Gareth Jones and Jennifer George

    Year Published: 2021

    ISBN: 9781260735154

    Text 2: SMBD

    Title: Strategic Modelling and Business Dynamics: A Feedback Systems Approach

    Author(s): John D. W. Morecroft

    Year Published: 2015

    ISBN: 9781118844687


    The management of enterprises creates many multi-faceted challenges for the general manager. A general manager needs to understand the internal workings of a firm, assess and develop strategies, and understand globalization. While these issues are distinct, they are also very much intertwined. This course will provide an integrated view of these challenges and show that successful management in the 21st century requires a combination of insights gained from economics, sociology, psychology, and political economy and the successful applications of systems thinking and business dynamics.

    The first part of this course investigates the different perspectives a general manager must take, how to integrate those perspectives, and what the role of leadership is in setting and realizing goals to deal with the challenges faced by a major global firm operating in complex global markets. Next, this course introduces leading-edge systems thinking mapping and modeling tools to enhance students’ ability to diagnose and solve complex business and social problems. Students will learn a flexible and powerful approach to structuring managerial problems and visualizing the interconnectedness of business, social, and environmental systems. Students will develop skills to conceptualize and build simulation models of an enterprise, enabling them to explore the dynamic consequences of different strategy/policy decisions and identify key leverage points in the system.


    Upon completion of the course, students are expected to be able to:

    • Identify and differentiate between the various styles of contemporary management and the differing approaches to effective organizational leadership.

    • Recognize the extent of the social and ethical responsibilities and the inherent duties and roles of leaders and managers in contemporary organizations.

    • Understand the basics of planning and decision-making, including project and strategic management planning.

    • Develop and implement key management processes for effectively planning, organizing, influencing, and controlling the organization.

    • Understand the principal requirements of effective organizational design and development, plus the impact of culture on modern organizations.

    • Identify and differentiate between the theories affecting employee motivation and the inter-relationships between influence, power, and leadership.

    • Identify the principal functions of Human Resource Management and the extent to which HRM is involved with Strategic Management Planning, including Long Range Initial Planning and Annual Operating Plans.

    • Understand the significant impact of group dynamics and teamwork on organizational behavior and management.

    • Discuss organizational change, change management, conflict management, and negotiation processes within the organization.

    • Understand the principles of organizational control processes, including control methods and techniques and quality improvement initiatives.

    • Understand the central concepts and theories of systems thinking and system dynamics modeling.

    • Identify the reinforcing and balancing feedback loops in different business strategy situations.

    • Understand complex business and social problems using a systems thinking perspective.

    • Apply systems thinking concepts, theories, and tools to identify and test business strategy alternatives.

    • Develop simulation models to explain puzzling business and social dynamics.

    • Test and build confidence in systems models.

    • Communicate a compelling written report of systems thinking and modeling analysis findings suitable for a managerial audience.

    • Collaborate and work in a team to apply systems thinking and modeling to test alternative business strategies.

    • Apply systems thinking and modeling tools to develop responsible business thinking under sustainability considerations.

    • Develop systems thinking skills to encourage forward thinking and identify innovative strategies while influencing others to achieve desired results.

  • WEEK 1

    Module 1

    The Manager as a Person

    Reference(s): CM Ch1-3

    Module 2

    Managing Ethics, Social Responsibility, and Diversity

    Reference(s): CM Ch4-5

    Module 3

    Managing in the Global Environment

    Reference(s): CM Ch6

    WEEK 2

    Module 4

    The Manager as a Planner and Strategist

    Reference(s): CM Ch7-9

    Module 5

    Managing Organizational Structure, Culture, Control, and Change

    Reference(s): CM Ch10-11

    Module 6

    Building, Managing, and Leading Human Resources

    Reference(s): CM Ch12-15

    WEEK 3

    Module 7

    Managing Critical Organizational Processes

    Reference(s): CM Ch16-18

    Module 8

    Introduction to Feedback Systems Thinking

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch1-2

    Module 9

    Modelling Dynamic Systems

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch3

    WEEK 4

    Module 10

    Cyclical Dynamics and the Process of Model Building

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch4-5

    Module 11

    Dynamics of Growth from Diffusion

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch6

    Module 12

    Managing Business Growth

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch7

    WEEK 5

    Module 13

    Industry Dynamics

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch8

    Module 14

    Public Sector Applications of Strategic Modelling

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch9

    Module 15

    Model Validity, Mental Models and Learning

    Reference(s): SMBD Ch10


    WEIGHT: 10.0%

    DEADLINE: 23:59 (GMT +0) on Sunday of Week 5

    All students are expected to participate actively in discussions, class exercises, activities, simulations, and group work. Regular attendance, preparation, and participation in class discussions (online and in discussion forums) are required. Good attendance results in more opportunities to engage in quality participation and earn a higher participation grade.

    Class participation and discussion indicate that students have read the assigned readings. Grades will not be based on the number of posts submitted or comments made in a class but on the overall contribution to the discussion. Students are encouraged to exchange contact information and support one another if a class is missed. They must contact the course instructor if concerned about attendance or in need of additional information on any assignment. If a student is unable to attend three or more classes, then they may be asked to complete additional assignments in order to complete a course.


    WEIGHT: 10.0%

    DEADLINE: 23:59 (GMT +0) on Sunday of Week 1-4

    General Information

    Each week from Week 1 to Week 4, students must complete one graded quiz with twenty (20) multiple-choice questions. These assessments aim to determine the level of comprehension and mastery of the material covered each week. The deadline to submit this assessment is always on Sunday at 23:59 (GMT+0) each week from Week 1 to Week 4. Quiz assignments are graded by computer, and the grade is stored in the online grade book. Only one 40-minute attempt per quiz is allowed.


    • Weight: 2.5%

    • Deadline: 23:59 (GMT +0) on Sunday of Week 1


    • Weight: 2.5%

    • Deadline: 23:59 (GMT +0) on Sunday of Week 2


    • Weight: 2.5%

    • Deadline: 23:59 (GMT +0) on Sunday of Week 3


    • Weight: 2.5%

    • Deadline: 23:59 (GMT +0) on Sunday of Week 4


    WEIGHT: 20.0%

    DEADLINE: 23:59 (GMT +0) on Sunday of Week 5

    General Information

    In Week 5, students must complete one graded quiz consisting of sixty (60) multiple-choice questions. This assessment aims to determine the level of comprehension and mastery of the material covered over five weeks. The deadline to submit this assessment is always on Sunday at 23:59 (Greenwich Meantime GMT +0) of Week 5. Quiz assignments are graded by computer, and the grade is stored in the online grade book. Only one 120-minute attempt per quiz is allowed.


    WEIGHT: 60.0%

    DEADLINE: Sunday at 23:59 (GMT +0) of Week 5

    General Information

    This must be eight pages (approximately two thousand words) not including references, title page, and appendix. The purpose of this assessment is to determine the level of comprehension and mastery of the material covered over five weeks, focusing on the practical aspects of the course. The deadline to submit this assessment is always on Sunday at 23:59 (GMT +0) of Week 5. The grade is stored in the online grade book. As only one attempt per piece of coursework is allowed, it is highly recommended that students review all course materials and complete some test preparation tasks before attempting the graded assessment.


    Please be sure to review the following important information about the University Policies and Procedures.

    All students must participate in all classroom activities, attend classes regularly, and prepare before classes for classroom activities that require advance preparation. Students need to fully appreciate that good attendance results in more opportunities to engage in quality participation, which, in turn, results in a more thorough acquisition of subject knowledge and higher participation grades.

    Participation in classroom discussions indicates that students have read the assigned readings. Grades will not be based on the number of posts submitted or comments made in the classroom but on the overall quality of contributions to discussions.

    If a student is unable to attend 3 or more classes, he/she may be asked to complete additional assignments to complete the course.

    Mode of Attendance

    For the portion of the course that takes place over Microsoft Teams:

    Students are required to arrive on time and engage appropriately with their fellow students, their teacher(s) and course materials. They must attend with a functional web camera and microphone, have the latest version of Microsoft Teams installed on their computers, avoid attending via a mobile phone or web browser, and have all necessary materials to hand. Also, their cameras must be always switched on, except for occasions when privacy becomes a necessity. In addition, they must be appropriately attired, attend in an environment that will not distract them, their fellow students or their teacher(s), especially avoiding attending while in a vehicle, whether moving or stationary.

    For the on-campus portion of the course:

    The mandatory on-campus session meets as per the AUS Campus schedule. Good attendance is required to earn credits and pass the course. Students cannot arrive late or leave early. Students traveling from afar must plan accordingly, giving themselves plenty of time to arrive by the start of class. No exceptions can be granted.

    Classroom Expectations

    Classes start and end on time, with late entry or reentry allowed only under exceptional circumstances. All phones and electronic devices must be turned off.


    The expectation is that students read assigned materials prior to class. Class discussions are based on their reading of these materials and their reflections on what they have learned and how these relate to their experiences. Assignments are intended to encourage students’ exploration, reflection on and synthesis of assigned topics and course discussions.

    Assessments are listed in the course syllabus and are due by the stipulated deadlines.

    No assessment will be accepted after the day following the day it is due. If an assessment submission is one day late late, it will receive an automatic reduction in grade of one letter, for example, from an A to a B. After that, no late work will be accepted, and the student will receive an F grade for the assessment.

    Submission of late papers must be approved in advance. Late final papers will not be accepted.


    Students are responsible for understanding the University Policies and how to use sources responsibly. Violations of academic integrity are taken very seriously. Students are asked to visit the course RESM 50011: Fundamentals of Graduate Research Reading and Writing to review important information on academic citation and referencing rules.


    The University is committed to providing an accessible academic community. The Disability Services (DS) is responsible for providing accommodations to students with disabilities. Students must request accommodations or adjustments through the DS. Instructors cannot grant accommodation requests without prior DS approval. It is imperative to be in touch with the DSS as soon as possible to avoid delays in the provision of an accommodation.

    The University takes student privacy seriously. Any medical documentation should be provided directly to the DS if a substantial accommodation is required. If a student misses any classes due to a short-term illness, he/she should notify his/her instructor but to avoid the inclusion of a doctor's note. Course staff will not request, accept, or review doctor's notes or other medical documentation. For more information, email


    Students may not post, publish, sell, or otherwise publicly distribute course materials without the written permission of the course instructor. Such materials include, but are not limited to, the following: lecture notes, lecture slides, video, or audio recordings, assignments, problem sets, examinations, other students’ work, and answer keys. Students who sell, post, publish, or distribute course materials without written permission, whether for the purposes of soliciting answers or otherwise, may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including a requirement to withdraw. Furthermore, students may not make video or audio recordings of class sessions for their own use without written permission from the instructor.


    It is never appropriate to use materials prepared for previous courses by students or faculty. Students should not use previously completed case write-ups, or summaries of readings.


    Additional information can be found on the course website.

    Please note: the syllabus may be modified prior to and during a course, including updates to assignments and additional material.