The SYSTORY app uses a coastal system model that can simulate the behaviour of terrestrial and marine coastal systems.

Learning from simulated coastal scenarios

The CCRES Systems Analysis team is researching socio-ecological problems in the coastal zone. The team has developed a coastal system model called SYSTORY, which can simulate the behaviour of terrestrial and marine coastal systems.

During May, this team ran its third and final round of focus group discussions in El Nido, the Philippines.

The SYSTORY model was used at the focus groups to assess scenarios for managing local problems: fish catch decline, mangrove loss, water pollution and food insecurity.

The focus groups in El Nido were run by local CCRES partners: the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development (PCSD) and the Palawan State University (PSU).

During the focus groups, barangay leaders were shown how the information gathered during previous focus groups with them was used to develop the SYSTORY model. The model was then used within the group to assess scenarios and show how these scenarios affect system behaviour over time.

Smart phone app

In April, the CCRES Systems Analysis team commenced work on the development of a smart phone app – also called SYSTORY.

The SYSTORY app is a simulation and storytelling tool that helps managers to understand and visualise the dynamics of coastal systems and assess the influence of alternative scenarios on system trajectories over time.

The app will run on Apple and Android smart phones, tables and Windows PCs. It will have both ‘explore’ and ‘experiment’ functions. ‘Explore’ will allow users to explore a story of the system and learn how coastal ecosystems and people interact. ‘Experiment’ will allow users to run simulations for user-defined scenarios and see how these scenarios affect the behaviour of the system.

The team is now nearing the end of the design phase for the SYSTORY app and a mock is available for viewing at

SYSTORY at Asia-Pacific conference

In February, Russell Richards, Melanie King and Carl Smith attended the 2nd Asia-Pacific System Dynamics Conference held at the National University of Singapore.

There, Carl gave a plenary presentation about the application of system dynamics in the CCRES project, which created much interest. Conference delegates also elected to have the next Asia-Pacific System Dynamics Conference in Brisbane in late 2019 or early 2020. Carl will lead the organising committee for this conference.