Dissertation Abstracts

Regional Sustainability Model: System Dynamics for addressing poverty in South America

Author: Gallon, Luciano , luciano.gallon@upb.edu.co
Department: Institut Universitari de Recerca en Ciència i Tecnologies de la Sostenibilitat
University: Universitat Politèctica de Catalunya , Spain
Supervisor: Miquel BARCELÓ and Diego F. GÓMEZ
Year of completion: 2012
Language of dissertation: Spanish

Keywords: Sustainability , Poverty , South America , SystemDynamics
Areas of Research: Futures Research , Poverty, Social Welfare and Social Policy , Sociocybernetics


In 1950, 113 million people lived in South America, in 2010, 393 million, three and a half times more. Half of them live in poverty. In 2050, about 485 million people will be living there. Contemporary population dynamics figures on a global average show that by each birth in a rich family there are 38 in poor families. Then it’s necessary to think on new social, ecological and economic systems models to analyse and synthesize their possible sustainability and to research on how it is possible and behave. This research shows the process of building a theoretical and practical framework for modeling South America using system dynamics and explores questions such as: Is it possible to reduce poverty following a sustainable path? What is the kind of steady state behind the sustainability ideas? What relationship can be found between the scales of space and time of the human perspective and of the sustainability and the dynamics of the new social equilibriums? How such exploration enriches the understanding of social systems and human behaviour? What contributions can be offered from such analysis and synthesis to contribute to sustainability? How can the structure and dynamics of South America help to answer those questions? The obtained results serve to discover possible inconsistencies and counterintuitive behaviours in traditional conceptions of poverty, development and sustainability.

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