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Summary

We model the Western Roman Empire from 500 BCE to 500 CE, aiming to understand the interdependent dynamics of army size, conquered territory and the production and debasement of coins within the empire. The relationships are represented through feed-back relationships and modelled mathematically via a dynamical system, specified as a set of ordinary differential equations. We analyze the stability of a subsystem and determine that it is neutrally stable. Based on this, we find that to prevent decline, the optimal policy was to stop debasement and reduce the army size and territory during the rule of Marcus Aurelius. Given the nature of the stability of the system and the kind of policies necessary to prevent decline, we argue that a high degree of centralized control was necessary, in line with basic tenets of structural-demographic theory.


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Summary

sues of land distribution and ownership matter in an industrialized and post-industrial world. In rural areas, land is still the livelihood of a large portion of the people and thus central to the viability of local communities. Land ownership is also central to national politics through issues of self-sufficiency, food sovereignty and recourse management. This study applies a historical approach combined with system dynamics modeling to the case of Norwegian odelsrett between 1814 and 2014. The odelsrett is a familial right of redemption regarding landed, agricultural property, which has roots going back more than a millennium in Norway. The aim of this study is to identify the impact of the odelsrett on the distribution of land ownership in Norway as a case. The results indicate that the odelsrett in Norway helped to increase wider distribution of land amongst the agricultural population only with the help of external historical events. We furthermore demonstrate how land ownership is an exclusive right, and how the legal system of which the odelsrett is part is designed to and operates to reproduce this right. Journal of Rural Studies, Volume 72, Pages 11-22


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Summary

The cost of work absenteeism (sickness absence) is high in Norway (120 billion NOK), which threatens the economic sustainability of the Norwegian welfare state. Social sustainability is also challenged with women having a higher absenteeism rate than men. I use system dynamics modeling to explore how women attain a high rate of work absenteeism. Care work is the chosen case because this is the profession category where women are most represented. The results do not support the double burden theory, though several structural mechanisms indicate that competing theories of female absenteeism illustrate different sides of the same phenomenon. Social Sciences 7(6): 94