About MetaModelManager


“Metamodels” provide a novel approach to species risk assessment for systems in which diverse threats are most effectively addressed through different disciplines, act at different spatiotemporal scales, or interact in non-linear ways. A metamodel links multiple, discrete models that depict separate components of a complex system, governing the flow of information between models and the sequence of events in the simulation process. Each discrete model simulates processes specific to its disciplinary realm while being informed of changes in other parts of the metamodel by accessing common descriptors of the system, populations, and individuals.Interactions among models are revealed as emergent properties of the system. MetaModel Manager is a new platform to implement this approach for extending wildlife risk assessment beyond single-species population viability analysis. MetaModel Manager allows any number of models representing species demography, diseases, landscapes, human actions, or other processes to be linked to models of population dynamics.

MetaModel Manager is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

  • How to Cite

    Pollak, J.P., & R.C. Lacy. 2017. MetaModel Manager. Version 1.0.4. Chicago Zoological Society, Brookfield, Illinois, USA.

    Please acknowledge SCTI in your reports and publications. Suggested wording:

    MetaModelManager software (Pollak & Lacy 2017) is provided under a CreativeCommons Attribution-NoDerivatives International License, courtesy of the Species Conservation Toolkit Initiative (https://scti.tools).

  • Key References

    Lacy, R.C., P.S. Miller, P.J. Nyhus, J.P Pollak, B.E. Raboy, and S. Zeigler. 2013. Metamodels for transdisciplinary analysis of population dynamics. PLoS ONE 8(12): e84211. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0084211.


MetaModel Manager is constantly changing. We fix bugs when they are identified, and when we have time to fix them. We also add new or improve on old analyses and features when we believe that they will enhance the management of populations, and we have the time to add the enhancements. We frequently make small changes to screen lay-outs, screen text, and file formats when we feel that the change will improve the program for users (and we have time). The PMx program will alert users on the opening screen if a newer version is available for downloading.

Note that we do not guarantee that all changes to the program have been documented here. In particular, we won’t list here many very minor changes made to the interface.

We also do not guarantee that all bugs in code or errors in algorithms have now been fixed. Reports of apparent bugs can be made at www.vortex10.org/Bug_Reports.aspx .

  • 28 April 2017 (version 1.0.4)

    A complete manual is now included in the installation, and the program provides context-sensitive Help. Hitting the F1 key will open the manual in a pdf viewer to either the page most relevant to the screen that you are currently on, or to the Table of Contents.

    Some fixes have been made to how REVAL and similar calls to R scripts are implemented in functions.

Accessory Tools

Accessory tools are apps that can be used in conjunction with MetaModelManager. As users typically include at least one Vortex model in their metamodel, we have listed some of the accessory tools that are automatically included with Vortex installation here. For more information about each of these tools, please see the Vortex manual and technical documentation.