Computational Model Library

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Peer reviewed An extended replication of Abelson's and Bernstein's community referendum simulation

Klaus Troitzsch | Published Friday, October 25, 2019 | Last modified Friday, August 25, 2023

This is an extended replication of Abelson’s and Bernstein’s early computer simulation model of community referendum controversies which was originally published in 1963 and often cited, but seldom analysed in detail. This replication is in NetLogo 6.3.0, accompanied with an ODD+D protocol and class and sequence diagrams.

This replication replaces the original scales for attitude position and interest in the referendum issue which were distributed between 0 and 1 with values that are initialised according to a normal distribution with mean 0 and variance 1 to make simulation results easier compatible with scales derived from empirical data collected in surveys such as the European Value Study which often are derived via factor analysis or principal component analysis from the answers to sets of questions.

Another difference is that this model is not only run for Abelson’s and Bernstein’s ten week referendum campaign but for an arbitrary time in order that one can find out whether the distributions of attitude position and interest in the (still one-dimensional) issue stabilise in the long run.

Vaccine adoption with outgroup aversion using Cleveland area data

bruce1809 | Published Monday, July 31, 2023 | Last modified Sunday, August 06, 2023

This model takes concepts from a JASSS paper this is accepted for the October, 2023 edition and applies the concepts to empirical data from counties surrounding and including Cleveland Ohio. The agent-based model has a proportional number of agents in each of the counties to represent the correct proportions of adults in these counties. The adoption decision probability uses the equations from Bass (1969) as adapted by Rand & Rust (2011). It also includes the Outgroup aversion factor from Smaldino, who initially had used a different imitation model on line grid. This model uses preferential attachment network as a metaphor for social networks influencing adoption. The preferential network can be adjusted in the model to be created based on both nodes preferred due to higher rank as well as a mild preference for nodes of a like group.

This model has been developed together with the publication ‘Modelling Value Change - An Exploratory Approach’

Value change and moral change have increasingly become topics of interest in the philosophical literature. Several theoretical accounts have been proposed. Such accounts are usually based on certain theoretical and conceptual assumptions and their strengths and weaknesses are often hard to determine and compare, also because they are based on limited empirical evidence.

We propose that a step forward can be made with the help of agent-based modelling (ABM). ABM can be used to investigate whether a simulation model based on a specific account of value change can reproduce relevant phenomena. To illustrate this approach, we built a model based on the pragmatist account of value change proposed in van de Poel and Kudina (2022). We show that this model can reproduce four relevant phenomena, namely 1) the inevitability and stability of values, 2) how different societies may react differently to external shocks, 3) moral revolutions, and 4) lock-in.

Hierarchy and War

Alan van Beek Michael Z. Lopate | Published Thursday, April 06, 2023

Scholars have written extensively about hierarchical international order, on the one hand, and war on the other, but surprisingly little work systematically explores the connection between the two. This disconnect is all the more striking given that empirical studies have found a strong relationship between the two. We provide a generative computational network model that explains hierarchy and war as two elements of a larger recursive process: The threat of war drives the formation of hierarchy, which in turn shapes states’ incentives for war. Grounded in canonical theories of hierarchy and war, the model explains an array of known regularities about hierarchical order and conflict. Surprisingly, we also find that many traditional results of the IR literature—including institutional persistence, balancing behavior, and systemic self-regulation—emerge from the interplay between hierarchy and war.

An Agent-Based Model to simulate agent reactions to threatening information based on the anxiety-to-approach framework of Jonas et al. (2014).
The model showcases the framework of BIS/BAS (inhibitory and approach motivated behavior) for the case of climate information, including parameters for anxiety, environmental awareness, climate scepticism and pro-environmental behavior intention.

Agents receive external information according to threat-level and information frequency. The population dynamic is based on the learning from that information as well as social contagion mechanisms through a scale-free network topology.

The model uses Netlogo 6.2 and the network extension.

This is an interdisciplinary agent-based model with Monte Carlo simulations to assess the relative effects of broadcast and contagion processes in a multiplex social network. This multiplex approach models multiple channels of informal communication - phone, word-of-mouth, and social media - that vary in their attribute values. Each agent is an individual in a threatened community who, once warned, has a probability of warning others in their social network using one of these channels. The probability of an individual warning others is based on their warning source and the time remaining until disaster impact, among other variables. Default parameter values were chosen from empirical studies of disaster warnings along with the spatial aspects of Coos Bay, OR, USA and Seaside, OR, USA communities.

The Mobility Transition Model (MoTMo) is a large scale agent-based model to simulate the private mobility demand in Germany until 2035. Here, we publish a very much reduced version of this model (R-MoTMo) which is designed to demonstrate the basic modelling ideas; the aim is by abstracting from the (empirical, technological, geographical, etc.) details to examine the feed-backs of individual decisions on the socio-technical system.

This model is intended to study how the way information is collectively managed (i.e. shared, collected, processed, and stored) in a system performs during a crisis or disaster. Performance is assessed in terms of the system’s ability to provide the information needed to the actors who need it when they need it. There are two main types of actors in the simulation, namely communities and professional responders. Their ability to exchange information is crucial to improve the system’s performance as each of them has direct access to only part of the information they need.

In a nutshell, the following occurs during a simulation. Due to a disaster, a series of randomly occurring disruptive events takes place. The actors in the simulation need to keep track of such events. Specifically, each event generates information needs for the different actors, which increases the information gaps (i.e. the “piles” of unaddressed information needs). In order to reduce the information gaps, the actors need to “discover” the pieces of information they need. The desired behavior or performance of the system is to keep the information gaps as low as possible, which is to address as many information needs as possible as they occur.

An agent model is presented that aims to capture the impact of cheap talk on collective action in a commons dilemma. The commons dilemma is represented as a spatially explicit renewable resource. Agent’s trust in others impacts the speed and harvesting rate, and trust is impacted by observed harvesting behavior and cheap talk. We calibrated the model using experimental data (DeCaro et al. 2021). The best fit to the data consists of a population with a small frequency of altruistic and selfish agents, and mostly conditional cooperative agents sensitive to inequality and cheap talk. This calibrated model provides an empirical test of the behavioral theory of collective action of Elinor Ostrom and Humanistic Rational Choice Theory.

Cooperation is essential for all domains of life. Yet, ironically, it is intrinsically vulnerable to exploitation by cheats. Hence, an explanatory necessity spurs many evolutionary biologists to search for mechanisms that could support cooperation. In general, cooperation can emerge and be maintained when cooperators are sufficiently interacting with themselves. This communication provides a kind of assortment and reciprocity. The most crucial and common mechanisms to achieve that task are kin selection, spatial structure, and enforcement (punishment). Here, we used agent-based simulation models to investigate these pivotal mechanisms against conditional defector strategies. We concluded that the latter could easily violate the former and take over the population. This surprising outcome may urge us to rethink the evolution of cooperation, as it illustrates that maintaining cooperation may be more difficult than previously thought. Moreover, empirical applications may support these theoretical findings, such as invading the cooperator population of pathogens by genetically engineered conditional defectors, which could be a potential therapy for many incurable diseases.

Displaying 10 of 85 results empirical clear

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