Publication Date



Social System Design Lab, Washington University in St. Louis


The COVID-19 pandemic ushered in the new reality of remote working and learning, forcing group model building practitioners to make an abrupt shift to online workshops. Like our peers, the Social System Design Lab (SSDL) at Washington University in St. Louis confronted this challenge by exploring what tools existed for adaptation and continued collaboration. The shift has not been easy, but it has revealed new insights that suggest areas to leverage the strengths of online GMB long after the pandemic comes to an end.

The purpose of this brief is to provide some general points of comparison between in-person and online group model building and introduce challenges and opportunities that practitioners in the SSDL have faced when translating workshops to online spaces.

Series Number

Methods Brief Series 2.01: Online GMB: Challenges, Opportunities, and Barriers

Document Type

Research Brief