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

    Software citation: Pollak, J.P., & R.C. Lacy. 2020. MetaModel Manager. Version 1.0.6. Chicago Zoological Society, Brookfield, Illinois, USA.

    Manual citation: Raboy, B.E., R.C. Lacy, T. Callicrate, & C.M. Lees. 2017. MetaModel Manager User’s Manual. Chicago Zoological Society, Brookfield, Illinois, USA.

    Further information available in: 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.

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

    MetaModelManager software (Pollak & Lacy 2020) 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 .

  • 25 June 2020

    MMM installation brought up to date with newest version of Outbreak, and newer version (4.7.2) of the .NET Framework.

  • 6 January 2020 (version 1.0.6)

    Links to website updated to scti.tools (from discontinued vortex10.org site).

  • 9 February 2018

    A few changes were made to allow MMM to see Population State variables and Individual State variables created with Outbreak. Also, when Outbreak is linked as a model in MMM, state variables to be shared via MMM must be defined within Outbreak, rather than (as was previously the case) Outbreak automatically being able to access any state variable included in a metamodel. Other changes were made to Outbreak to enable the creation and use of PSvars and ISvars; see the Outbreak change log for more information.

  • 12 January 2018 (version 1.0.5)

    A new Modifier model was added to the ones available as standard model components. MMM-RLink provides the ability to use R scripts to modify the Global, Population, and Individual state variables in a metamodel. See the documentation and samples in the MMMProjects/Samples/RLink folder for more information.

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.