Readings for Week 6


Wed., Feb. 14

Please read Bankes (1993).

Discussion Questions

  • For these 2 questions, be ready to share 1-2 sentences for each of them by writing them on the whiteboard at the front at the beginning of the discussion.
    • What is the main idea of this paper?
    • Why did the author write this paper?
  • The author outlines 2 main types of modeling (consolidative and exploratory). Be ready to discuss the key differences of both of these main approaches.
  • The author uses a consolidative modeling example of the “ultimate combat model” to illustrate the main issues with consolidative models.
    • What are some of the problems?
    • Are there ways to avoid these problems in consolidative modeling?
  • What are the uses of exploratory modeling, according to this paper? (so what?)
  • What do we do with the uncertainty we discovered in our model?
    • i.e. what is the role of sensitivity analysis? If we find the bounds in our model, then what?
    • Follow up: how would we use model uncertainty for our case study on building elevations?
  • The author discusses a hierarchy of exploratory modeling types (data-driven, question-driven, model-driven). Let’s talk about the goals of each of them and how that may lead to differences in our modeling approach.


Bankes, S. (1993). Exploratory modeling for policy analysis. Operations Research, 41(3), 435–449.