Computational Model Library

The Retail Competition Agent-based Model (RC-ABM) is designed to simulate the retail competition system in the Region of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, which which explicitly represents store competition behaviour. Through the RC-ABM, we aim to answer 4 research questions: 1) What is the level of correspondence between market share and revenue acquisition for an agent-based approach compared to a traditional location-allocation-based approach? 2) To what degree can the observed store spatial pattern be reproduced by competition? 3) To what degree are their path dependent patterns of retail success? 4) What is the relationship between retail survival and the endogenous geographic characteristics of stores and consumer expenditures?

Peer reviewed B3GET

Kristin Crouse | Published Thu Nov 14 20:07:16 2019 | Last modified Tue Oct 6 20:13:54 2020

B3GET simulates populations of virtual organisms evolving over generations, whose evolutionary outcomes reflect the selection pressures of their environment. The model simulates several factors considered important in biology, including life history trade-offs, investment in fighting ability and aggression, sperm competition, infanticide, and competition over access to food and mates. Downloaded materials include a starting genotype and population files. Edit the these files and see what changes occur in the behavior of virtual populations!

This model inspects the performance of firms as the product attribute space changes, which evolves as a consequence of firms’ actions. Firms may create new product variants by dragging demand from other existing variants. Firms decide whether to open new product variants, to invade existing ones, or to keep their variant portfolio. At each variant there is a Cournot competition each round. Competition is nested since many firms compete at many variants simultaneously, affecting firm composition at each location (variant).

After the Cournot outcomes, at each round firms decide whether to (i) keep their existing product variant niche, (ii) invade an existing variant, (iii) create a new variant, or (iv) abandon a variant. Firms’ profits across their niche take into consideration the niche-width cost and the cost of opening a new variant.

This a model developed as a part of the paper Mejía, G. & García-Díaz, C. (2018). Market-level effects of firm-level adaptation and intermediation in networked markets of fresh foods: a case study in Colombia. Agricultural Systems 160: 132-142.

It simulates the competition dynamics of the potato market in Bogotá, Colombia. The model explores the economic impact of intermediary actors on the potato supply chain.

This model aims to simulate Competition and Displacement of Online Interpersonal Communication Platforms process from a bottom-up angle. Individual interpersonal communication platform adoption and abandonment serve as the micro-foundation of the simulation model. The evolution mode of platform user online communication network determines how present platform users adjust their communication relationships as well as how new users join that network. This evolution mode together with innovations proposed by individual interpersonal communication platforms would also have impacts on the platform competition and displacement process and result by influencing individual platform adoption and abandonment behaviors. Three scenes were designed to simulate some common competition situations occurred in the past and current time, that two homogeneous interpersonal communication platforms competed with each other when this kind of platforms first came into the public eye, that a late entrant platform with a major innovation competed with the leading incumbent platform during the following days, as well as that both the leading incumbent and the late entrant continued to propose many small innovations to compete in recent days, respectively.
Initial parameters are as follows: n(Nmax in the paper), denotes the final node number of the online communication network node. mi (m in the paper), denotes the initial degree of those initial network nodes and new added nodes. pc(Pc in the paper), denotes the proportion of links to be removed and added in each epoch. pst(Pv in the paper), denotes the proportion of nodes with a viscosity to some platforms. comeintime(Ti in the paper), denotes the epoch when Platform 2 joins the market. pit(Pi in the paper), denotes the proportion of nodes adopting Platform 2 immediately at epoch comeintime(Ti). ct(Ct in the paper), denotes the Innovation Effective Period length. In Scene 2, There is only one major platform proposed by Platform 2, and ct describes that length. However, in Scene 3, Platform 2 and 1 will propose innovations alternately. And so, we set ct=10000 in simulation program, and every jtt epochs, we alter the innovation proposer from one platform to the other. Hence in this scene, jtt actually denotes the Innovation Effective Period length instead of ct.

System Narrative
How do rebel groups control territory and engage with the local economy during civil war? Charles Tilly’s seminal War and State Making as Organized Crime (1985) posits that the process of waging war and providing governance resembles that of a protection racket, in which aspiring governing groups will extort local populations in order to gain power, and civilians or businesses will pay in order to ensure their own protection. As civil war research increasingly probes the mechanisms that fuel local disputes and the origination of violence, we develop an agent-based simulation model to explore the economic relationship of rebel groups with local populations, using extortion racket interactions to explain the dynamics of rebel fighting, their impact on the economy, and the importance of their economic base of support. This analysis provides insights for understanding the causes and byproducts of rebel competition in present-day conflicts, such as the cases of South Sudan, Afghanistan, and Somalia.

Model Description
The model defines two object types: RebelGroup and Enterprise. A RebelGroup is a group that competes for power in a system of anarchy, in which there is effectively no government control. An Enterprise is a local civilian-level actor that conducts business in this environment, whose objective is to make a profit. In this system, a RebelGroup may choose to extort money from Enterprises in order to support its fighting efforts. It can extract payments from an Enterprise, which fears for its safety if it does not pay. This adds some amount of money to the RebelGroup’s resources, and they can return to extort the same Enterprise again. The RebelGroup can also choose to loot the Enterprise instead. This results in gaining all of the Enterprise wealth, but prompts the individual Enterprise to flee, or leave the model. This reduces the available pool of Enterprises available to the RebelGroup for extortion. Following these interactions the RebelGroup can choose to AllocateWealth, or pay its rebel fighters. Depending on the value of its available resources, it can add more rebels or expel some of those which it already has, changing its size. It can also choose to expand over new territory, or effectively increase its number of potential extorting Enterprises. As a response to these dynamics, an Enterprise can choose to Report expansion to another RebelGroup, which results in fighting between the two groups. This system shows how, faced with economic choices, RebelGroups and Enterprises make decisions in war that impact conflict and violence outcomes.


Pia Backmann | Published Thu Sep 19 07:54:28 2019

An individual-based model to evaluate, whether time delays in plant responses to insect herbivory can be beneficial for the plant.

In this paper we introduce an agent-based model of elections and government formation where voters do not have perfect knowledge about the parties’ ideological position. Although voters are boundedly rational, they are forward-looking in that they try to assess the likely impact of the different parties over the resulting government. Thus, their decision rules combine sincere and strategic voting: they form preferences about the different parties but deem some of them as inadmissible and try to block them from office. We find that the most stable and durable coalition governments emerge at intermediate levels of informational ambiguity. When voters have very poor information about the parties, their votes are scattered too widely, preventing the emergence of robust majorities. But also, voters with highly precise perceptions about the parties will cluster around tiny electoral niches with a similar aggregate effect.

This study investigates a possible nexus between inter-group competition and intra-group cooperation, which may be called “tribalism.” Building upon previous studies demonstrating a relationship between the environment and social relations, the present research incorporates a social-ecological model as a mediating factor connecting both individuals and communities to the environment. Cyclical and non-cyclical fluctuation in a simple, two-resource ecology drive agents to adopt either “go-it-alone” or group-based survival strategies via evolutionary selection. Novelly, this simulation employs a multilevel selection model allowing group-level dynamics to exert downward selective pressures on individuals’ propensity to cooperate within groups. Results suggest that cooperation and inter-group conflict are co-evolved in a triadic relationship with the environment. Resource scarcity increases inter-group competition, especially when resources are clustered as opposed to widely distributed. Moreover, the tactical advantage of cooperation in the securing of clustered resources enhanced selective pressure on cooperation, even if that implies increased individual mortality for the most altruistic warriors. Troubling, these results suggest that extreme weather, possibly as a result of climate change, could exacerbate conflict in sensitive, weather-dependent social-ecologies—especially places like the Horn of Africa where ecologically sensitive economic modalities overlap with high-levels of diversity and the wide-availability of small arms. As well, global development and foreign aid strategists should consider how plans may increase the value of particular locations where community resources are built or aid is distributed, potentially instigating tribal conflict. In sum, these factors, interacting with pre-existing social dynamics dynamics, may heighten inter-ethnic or tribal conflict in pluralistic but otherwise peaceful communities.

For special issue submission in JASSS.

This model explores a price Q-learning mechanism for perishable products that considers uncertain demand and customer preferences in a competitive multi-agent retailer market (a model-free environment).

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