Computational Model Library

PolicySpace2: modeling markets and endogenous public policies

B Furtado | Published Thu Feb 25 13:21:22 2021 | Last modified Fri Jan 14 13:46:42 2022

Policymakers decide on alternative policies facing restricted budgets and uncertain future. Designing public policies is further difficult due to the need to decide on priorities and handle effects across policies. Housing policies, specifically, involve heterogeneous characteristics of properties themselves and the intricacy of housing markets and the spatial context of cities. We propose PolicySpace2 (PS2) as an adapted and extended version of the open source PolicySpace agent-based model. PS2 is a computer simulation that relies on empirically detailed spatial data to model real estate, along with labor, credit, and goods and services markets. Interaction among workers, firms, a bank, households and municipalities follow the literature benchmarks to integrate economic, spatial and transport scholarship. PS2 is applied to a comparison among three competing public policies aimed at reducing inequality and alleviating poverty: (a) house acquisition by the government and distribution to lower income households, (b) rental vouchers, and (c) monetary aid. Within the model context, the monetary aid, that is, smaller amounts of help for a larger number of households, makes the economy perform better in terms of production, consumption, reduction of inequality, and maintenance of financial duties. PS2 as such is also a framework that may be further adapted to a number of related research questions.

With this model, we investigate resource extraction and labor conditions in the Global South as well as implications for climate change originating from industry emissions in the North. The model serves as a testbed for simulation experiments with evolutionary political economic policies addressing these issues. In the model, heterogeneous agents interact in a self-organizing and endogenously developing economy. The economy contains two distinct regions – an abstract Global South and Global North. There are three interlinked sectors, the consumption good–, capital good–, and resource production sector. Each region contains an independent consumption good sector, with domestic demand for final goods. They produce a fictitious consumption good basket, and sell it to the households in the respective region. The other sectors are only present in one region. The capital good sector is only found in the Global North, meaning capital goods (i.e. machines) are exclusively produced there, but are traded to the foreign as well as the domestic market as an intermediary. For the production of machines, the capital good firms need labor, machines themselves and resources. The resource production sector, on the other hand, is only located in the Global South. Mines extract resources and export them to the capital firms in the North. For the extraction of resources, the mines need labor and machines. In all three sectors, prices, wages, number of workers and physical capital of the firms develop independently throughout the simulation. To test policies, an international institution is introduced sanctioning the polluting extractivist sector in the Global South as well as the emitting industrial capital good producers in the North with the aim of subsidizing innovation reducing environmental and social impacts.

Retail Competition Agent-based Model

Jiaxin Zhang Derek Robinson | Published Sun Jan 3 19:59:48 2021 | Last modified Wed Nov 10 02:38:08 2021

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?

The Price Evolution with Expectations model provides the opportunity to explore the question of non-equilibrium market dynamics, and how and under which conditions an economic system converges to the classically defined economic equilibrium. To accomplish this, we bring together two points of view of the economy; the classical perspective of general equilibrium theory and an evolutionary perspective, in which the current development of the economic system determines the possibilities for further evolution.

The Price Evolution with Expectations model consists of a representative firm producing no profit but producing a single good, which we call sugar, and a representative household which provides labour to the firm and purchases sugar.The model explores the evolutionary dynamics whereby the firm does not initially know the household demand but eventually this demand and thus the correct price for sugar given the household’s optimal labour.

The model can be run in one of two ways; the first does not include money and the second uses money such that the firm and/or the household have an endowment that can be spent or saved. In either case, the household has preferences for leisure and consumption and a demand function relating sugar and price, and the firm has a production function and learns the household demand over a set number of time steps using either an endogenous or exogenous learning algorithm. The resulting equilibria, or fixed points of the system, may or may not match the classical economic equilibrium.

The purpose of this model is to understand the role of trade networks and their interaction with different fish resources, for fish provision. The model is developed based on a multi-methods approach, combining agent-based modeling, network analysis and qualitative data based on a small-scale fisheries study case. The model can be used to investigate both how trade network structures are embedded in a social-ecological context and the trade processes that occur within them, to analyze how they lead to emergent outcomes related to the resilience of fish provision. The model processes are informed by qualitative data analysis, and the social network analysis of an empirical fish trade network. The network analysis can be used to investigate diverse network structures to perform model experiments, and their influence on model outcomes.

The main outcomes we study are 1) the overexploitation of fish resources and 2) the availability and variability of fish provision to satisfy different market demands, and 3) individual traders’ fish supply at the micro-level. The model has two types of trader agents, seller and dealer. The model reveals that the characteristics of the trade networks, linked to different trader types (that have different roles in those networks), can affect the resilience of fish provision.

Knowledge Based Economy (KBE) is an artificial economy where firms placed in geographical space develop original knowledge, imitate one another and eventually recombine pieces of knowledge. In KBE, consumer value arises from the capability of certain pieces of knowledge to bridge between existing items (e.g., Steve Jobs illustrated the first smartphone explaining that you could make a call with it, but also listen to music and navigate the Internet). Since KBE includes a mechanism for the generation of value, it works without utility functions and does not need to model market exchanges.

Peer reviewed agent-based model studying money

Juan Ocampo | Published Thu Mar 4 18:48:40 2021 | Last modified Mon Mar 15 07:01:41 2021

1.7 billion people appear to be financially excluded. Due to the relevance of the problem, special purpose monies known as Complementary Currencies (CC) seem to be a potential solution. This doctoral project inquiries into the organising of money and its performative effects. It does so by following the communities designing CC and engineering their markets.

RAGE models a stylized common property grazing system. Agents follow a certain behavioral type. The model allows analyzing how household behavior with respect to a social norm on pasture resting affects long-term social-ecological system dynamics.

The integrated and spatially-explicit ABM, called DIReC (Demography, Industry and Residential Choice), has been developed for Aberdeen City and the surrounding Aberdeenshire (Ge, Polhill, Craig, & Liu, 2018). The model includes demographic (individual and household) models, housing infrastructure and occupancy, neighbourhood quality and evolution, employment and labour market, business relocation, industrial structure, income distribution and macroeconomic indicators. DIReC includes a detailed spatial housing model, basing preference models on house attributes and multi-dimensional neighbourhood qualities (education, crime, employment etc.).
The dynamic ABM simulates the interactions between individuals, households, the labour market, businesses and services, neighbourhoods and economic structures. It is empirically grounded using multiple data sources, such as income and gender-age distribution across industries, neighbourhood attributes, business locations, and housing transactions. It has been used to study the impact of economic shocks and structural changes, such as the crash of oil price in 2014 (the Aberdeen economy heavily relies on the gas and oil sector) and the city’s transition from resource-based to a green economy (Ge, Polhill, Craig, & Liu, 2018).

CoComForest

Wuthiwong WIMOLSAKCHAROEN | Published Tue Feb 2 08:08:48 2021

The name of the model, CoComForest, stands for COllaborative COMmunity FOREST management. The purposes of this model are to expose local resource harvesters to the competition with external resource harvesters, called outsiders, and to provide them the opportunity to collectively discuss on resource management. The model, which is made of a set of interconnected entities, including (i) community forest habitat, (ii) resource harvesters, (iii) market, and (iv) firebreak. More details about the CoComForest model are described based on the Overview, Design concept, and Details (ODD) protocol uploaded with the model.

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