This paper compares and contrasts a number of farm-level modeling studies published in the academic literature. All of the studies examined adaptation on EU dairy farms in response to developments in agricultural policy and/or environmental legislation. The studies are compared on the basis of their respective aims, model structure, results and conclusions. Having reviewed the models and their application, the discussion section of the paper considers strengths and weaknesses of the studies and following from that it considers possible future developments in farm-level response modeling. The relevance and application of such developments in the context of an analytical study of adaptation in Irish dairy farms is discussed.