Computational Model Library

Cultural Group Selection of Sustainable Institutions

Timothy Waring Sandra H Goff Paul Smaldino | Published Wed Jun 10 17:38:06 2015 | Last modified Tue Aug 4 14:14:05 2015

We develop a spatial, evolutionary model of the endogenous formation and dissolution of groups using a renewable common pool resource. We use this foundation to measure the evolutionary pressures at different organizational levels.

The Palaeo-Agulhas Plain formed an important habitat exploited by Pleistocene hunter-gatherer populations during periods of lower sea level. This productive, grassy habitat would have supported numerous large-bodied ungulates accessible to a population of skilled hunters with the right hunting technology. It also provided a potentially rich location for plant food collection, and along its shores a coastline that moved with the rise and fall of sea levels. The rich archaeological and paleontological records of Pleistocene sites along the modern Cape south coast of South Africa, which would have overlooked the Palaeo-Agulhas Plain during Pleistocene times of lower sea level, provides a paleoarchive of this extinct ecosystem. In this paper, we present a first order illustration of the “palaeoscape modeling” approach advocated by Marean et al. (2015). We use a resourcescape model created from modern studies of habitat productivity without the Palaeo-Agulhas Plain. This is equivalent to predominant Holocene conditions. We then run an agent-based model of the human foraging system to investigate several research questions. Our agent-based approach uses the theoretical framework of optimal foraging theory to model human foraging decisions designed to optimize the net caloric gains within a complex landscape of spatially and temporally variable resources. We find that during the high sea-levels of MIS 5e (+5-6 m asl) and the Holocene, the absence of the Plain left a relatively poor food base supporting a much smaller population relying heavily on edible plant resources from the current Cape flora. Despite high species diversity of plants with edible storage organs, and marine invertebrates, encounter rates with highly profitable resources were low. We demonstrate that without the Palaeo-Agulhas Plain, human populations must have been small and low density, and exploited plant, mammal, and marine resources with relatively low caloric returns. The exposure and contraction of the Palaeo-Agulhas Plain was likely the single biggest driver of behavioral change during periods of climate change through the Pleistocene and into the transition to the Holocene.

This model accompanies a paper looking at the role and limits of values and norms for modeling realistic social agents. Based on literature we synthesize a theory on norms and a theory that combines both values and norms. In contrast to previous work, these theories are checked against data on human behavior obtained from a psychological experiment on dividing money: the ultimatum game. We found that agents that act according to a theory that combines both values and norms, produce behavior quite similar to that of humans. Furthermore, we found that this theory is more realistic than theories solely concerned with norms or theories solely concerned with values. However, to explain the amount of money people accept in this ultimatum game we will eventually need an even more realistic theory. We propose that a theory that explains when people exactly choose to use norms instead of values could provide this realism.

A test-bed ecological model

Bruce Edmonds | Published Sun May 4 13:22:47 2014 | Last modified Wed May 15 14:18:58 2019

This is a multi-patch meta-population ecological model. It intended as a test-bed in which to test the impact of humans with different kinds of social structure.

BENCHv.2 model

Leila Niamir | Published Sun Apr 28 22:15:40 2019

The BENCH agent-based model is designed and developed to study shifts in residential energy use and corresponding emissions driven by behavioral changes among heterogeneous individuals.

This is an agent-based model, simulating wolf (Canis Lupus) reappearance in the Netherlands. The model’s purpose is to allow researchers to investigate the reappearance of wolves in the Netherlands and the possible effect of human interference. Wolf behaviour is modelled according to the literature. The suitability of the Dutch landscape for wolf settlement has been determined by Lelieveld (2012) [1] and is transformed into a colour-coded map of the Netherlands. The colour-coding is the main determinant of wolf settlement. Human involvement is modelled through the public opinion, which varies according to the size, composition and behaviour of the wolf population.

[1] Lelieveld, G.: Room for wolf comeback in the Netherlands, (2012).

Leptospirosis is a neglected, bacterial zoonosis with worldwide distribution, primarily a disease of poverty. More than 200 pathogenic serovars of Leptospira bacteria exist, and a variety of species may act as reservoirs for these serovars. Human infection is the result of direct or indirect contact with Leptospira bacteria in the urine of infected animal hosts, primarily livestock, dogs, and rodents. There is increasing evidence that dogs and dog-adapted serovar Canicola play an important role in the burden of leptospirosis in humans in marginalized urban communities. What is needed is a more thorough understanding of the transmission dynamics of Leptospira in these marginalized urban communities, specifically the relative importance of dogs and rodents in the transmission of Leptospira to humans. This understanding will be vital for identifying meaningful intervention strategies.
One of the main objectives of MHMSLeptoDy is to elucidate transmission dynamics of host-adapted Leptospira strains in multi-host system. The model can also be used to evaluate alternate interventions aimed at reducing human infection risk in small-scale communities like urban slums.

A simple emulation-based computational model

Carlos Fernández-Márquez Francisco J Vázquez | Published Tue May 21 07:46:43 2013 | Last modified Tue Feb 5 07:19:52 2019

Emulation is one of the simplest and most common mechanisms of social interaction. In this paper we introduce a descriptive computational model that attempts to capture the underlying dynamics of social processes led by emulation.

Peer reviewed Ache hunting

Marco Janssen Kim Hill | Published Tue Aug 13 21:27:28 2013 | Last modified Fri Dec 21 00:51:33 2018

Agent-based model of hunting behavior of Ache hunter-gatherers from Paraguay. We evaluate the effect of group size and cooperative hunting

ACT: Agent-based model of Critical Transitions

Oscar Kraan Steven Dalderop Gert Jan Kramer Igor Nikolic | Published Wed Oct 18 14:20:29 2017 | Last modified Mon Aug 27 13:51:30 2018

ACT is an ABM based on an existing conceptualisation of the concept of critical transitions applied to the energy transition. With the model we departed from the mean-field approach simulated relevant actor behaviour in the energy transition.

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