Publications about the M-Tool (all open access)
- van den Broek, K. L., Klein, S. A., Luomba, J., & Fischer, H. (2021). Introducing M-Tool: A standardised and inclusive mental model mapping tool. System Dynamics Review, 37(4), 353–362. https://doi.org/10.1002/sdr.1698
This paper introduces M-Tool and guides researchers on how to use the tool in their research.
- van den Broek, K. L., Luomba, J., van den Broek, J., & Fischer, H. (2021). Evaluating the Application of the Mental Model Mapping Tool (M-Tool). Frontiers in Psychology, 12. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2021.761882
This paper showcases the first application of the tool with a sample of Tanzanian fishers, and demonstrates support for M-Tool’s usability and validity.
- van Boxtel, W. & van den Broek, K.L. (2021). M-Tool data analysis script. URL: https://public.yoda.uu.nl/geo/UU01/Y8GP93.html. http://doi.org/10.24416/UU01-Y8GP93
This publication contains an R-script that provides users with a starting point for their M-Tool data analysis. The script uses the edge list produced by M-Tool and transforms these into total number of nodes, total number of edges and various centrality measures.
- Angst, M. & van den Broek, K.L. (2022). MToolR – A companion R package for M-Tool. https://marioangst.github.io/MToolR/
MToolR is a companion package for the Mental Model Mapping Tool M-Tool (https://www.m-tool.org/). The package provides: a) functionality to load and process data generated by M-Tool b) procedures for common (basic) analytical tasks c) visualization functions. More features are planned. We welcome feedback.
Publications with applications of the M-Tool
- van den Boom, L. A. T. P., van den Broek, K. L., Kroese, F. M., Moors, E. H. M., & de Ridder, D. (2023). Mental models of the protein shift: Exploring consumers’ perceptions of the transition. Appetite, 187, 106595. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.appet.2023.106595
The paper explored consumers’ mental models of how the protein transition unfolds to to identify barriers that go beyond the practical issues of changing one’s diet.
- van den Broek, K. L., Luomba, J., van den Broek, J., & Fischer, H. (2022). Content and complexity of stakeholders’ mental models of socio-ecological systems: Evidence from Tanzanian fishers. Journal of Environmental Psychology, 85, 101906. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jenvp.2022.101906
In this paper, we mapped Tanzanian fishers’ mental models of the Nile perch fish stock fluctuation. We find complex and diverse mental models of the causes of changes in the fish stock. These mental models tended to focus on the causal influence of destructive fishing activities. Mental model complexity consistently differed across geographical regions in Tanzania.
- de Ridder, D. T. D., van den Boom, L. A. T. P., Kroese, F. M., Moors, E. H. M., & van den Broek, K. L. (2022). How do people understand the spread of COVID-19 infections? Mapping mental models of factors contributing to the pandemic. Psychology & Health, 1–20. https://doi.org/10.1080/08870446.2022.2129054
How do citizens perceive the development of the COVID-19 pandemic? What are the perceived dynamics of the factors that influence transmissions of the virus and the number of cases? These are the questions that this team of researchers is investigated by mapping citizens’ mental models of the pandemic.
The MultiTip Project
The M-Tool has been developed with the MultiTip project, a research project capturing mental models on Lake Victoria’s Nile perch fishery at the Research Center for Environmental Economics, Heidelberg University. You can read about stakeholders’ mental models of this project in the following publications:
- Klein, S. A., van den Broek, K. L., Luomba, J., Onyango, H. O., Mbilingi, B., & Akumu, J. (2021). How knowledge acquisition shapes system understanding in small-scale fisheries. Current Research in Ecological and Social Psychology, 2, . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cresp.2021.100018
- Broek, K. L., Luomba, J., Onyango, H. O., Musobya, M., & Klein, S. A. (2020). A framework for co‐developing conservation research projects with stakeholders: A Lake Victoria case study. Lakes & Reservoirs: Science, Policy and Management for Sustainable Use, 25(4), 403–412. https://doi.org/10.1111/lre.12342
- van den Broek, K. L. (2019). Stakeholders’ perceptions of the socio-economic and environmental challenges at Lake Victoria. Lakes & Reservoirs: Research & Management, 24(3), 239–245. https://doi.org/10.1111/lre.12275
- van den Broek, K. (2018). Illuminating divergence in perceptions in natural resource management: A case for the investigation of the heterogeneity in mental models. Journal of Dynamic Decision Making, 4(1). https://doi.org/10.11588/jddm.2018.1.51316
Ongoing projects using the M-Tool
Mental models of the energy transition
Karlijn van den Broek (Utrecht University), Rouven Doran & Gisela Bohm (Bergen University)
This project maps citizens’ and expert mental models of the energy transition and the interaction between various energy transition pathways.
Mental models of climate change in West and East Africa
Maryse Chappin & Karlijn van den Broek (Copernicus Institute for Sustainable Development, Utrecht University), Gisela Böhm & Usman Isyaku (Department of Psychosocial Science, Bergen University)
The MECCA project aims to identify adaptation and mitigation strategies by analyzing the gap between stakeholder’s mental models of change and risk and projected impacts of human activities under changing climatic conditions in East Africa (Lake Victoria) and West Africa (Lagos). M-Tool will be used in this project to capture stakeholders’ mental models of the drivers and consequences of climate change among fishing, farming, and urban communities as well as relevant policymakers.