Computational Model Library

PaCE Austria Pilot Model

Ruth Meyer | Published Tue Jun 30 17:35:41 2020

The objective of building a social simulation in the Populism and Civic Engagement (PaCE) project is to study the phenomenon of populism by mapping individual level political behaviour and explain the influence of agents on, and their interdependence with the respective political parties. Voters, political parties and – to some extent – the media can be viewed as forming a complex adaptive system, in which parties compete for citizens’ votes, voters decide on which party to vote for based on their respective positions with regard to particular issues, and the media may influence the salience of issues in the public debate.

This is the first version of a model exploring voting behaviour in Austria. It focusses on modelling the interaction of voters and parties in a political landscape; the effects of the media are not yet represented. Austria was chosen as a case study because it has an established populist party (the “Freedom Party” FPO), which has even been part of the government over the years.

Political Participation

Didier Ruedin | Published Sat Apr 12 23:07:27 2014 | Last modified Tue Apr 14 19:59:31 2020

Implementation of Milbrath’s (1965) model of political participation. Individual participation is determined by stimuli from the political environment, interpersonal interaction, as well as individual characteristics.

The model simulates the decisions of residents and a water authority to respond to socio-hydrological hazards. Residents from neighborhoods are located in a landscape with topographic complexity and two problems: water scarcity in the peripheral neighborhoods at high altitude and high risk of flooding in the lowlands, at the core of the city. The role of the water authority is to decide where investments in infrastructure should be allocated to reduce the risk to water scarcity and flooding events in the city, and these decisions are made via a multi-objective site selection procedure. This procedure accounts for the interdependencies and feedback between the urban landscape and a policy scenario that defines the importance, or priorities, that the authority places on four criteria.
Neighborhoods respond to the water authority decisions by protesting against the lack of investment and the level of exposure to water scarcity and flooding. Protests thus simulate a form of feedback between local-level outcomes (flooding and water scarcity) and higher-level decision-making. Neighborhoods at high altitude are more likely to be exposed to water scarcity and lack infrastructure, whereas neighborhoods in the lowlands tend to suffer from recurrent flooding. The frequency of flooding is also a function of spatially uniform rainfall events. Likewise, neighborhoods at the periphery of the urban landscape lack infrastructure and suffer from chronic risk of water scarcity.
The model simulates the coupling between the decision-making processes of institutional actors, socio-political processes and infrastructure-related hazards. In the documentation, we describe details of the implementation in NetLogo, the description of the procedures, scheduling, and the initial conditions of the landscape and the neighborhoods.
This work was supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1414052, CNH: The Dynamics of Multi-Scalar Adaptation in Megacities (PI Hallie Eakin).

The Informational Dynamics of Regime Change

Dominik Klein Johannes Marx | Published Sat Oct 7 20:03:20 2017 | Last modified Tue Jan 14 10:39:18 2020

We model the epistemic dynamics preceding political uprising. Before deciding whether to start protests, agents need to estimate the amount of discontent with the regime. This model simulates the dynamics of group knowledge about general discontent.

We present an agent-based model for the sharing economy, in the short-time accommodations market, where peers participating as suppliers and demanders follow simple decision rules about sharing market participation, according to their heterogeneous characteristics. We consider the sharing economy mainly as a peer-to-peer market where the access is preferred to ownership, excluding professional agents using sharing platforms as Airbnb to promote their business.

The agent-based model captures the spatio-temporal institutional dynamics of the economy over the years at the level of a Dutch province. After 1945, Noord-Brabant in the Netherlands has been subject to an active program of economic development through the stimulation of pig husbandry. This has had far-reaching effects on its economy, landscape, and environment. The agents are households. The simulation is at institutional level, with typical stakeholder groups, lobbies, and political parties playing a role in determining policies that in turn determine economic, spatial and ecological outcomes. It allows to experiment with alternative scenarios based on two political dimensions: local versus global issues, and economic versus social responsibilitypriorities. The model shows very strong sensitivity to political context. It can serve as a reference model for other cases where “artificial institutional economics” is attempted.

MERCURY extension: population

Tom Brughmans | Published Thu May 23 06:28:44 2019

This model is an extended version of the original MERCURY model ( ) . It allows for experiments to be performed in which empirically informed population sizes of sites are included, that allow for the scaling of the number of tableware traders with the population of settlements, and for hypothesised production centres of four tablewares to be used in experiments.

Experiments performed with this population extension and substantive interpretations derived from them are published in:

Hanson, J.W. & T. Brughmans. In press. Settlement scale and economic networks in the Roman Empire, in T. Brughmans & A.I. Wilson (ed.) Simulating Roman Economies. Theories, Methods and Computational Models. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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.

Tiebout sorting

Marco Janssen | Published Thu Jan 24 19:37:29 2019

This Netlogo replication of Kollman, K., J.H. Miller and S.E. Page (1997) Political Institutions and Sorting in a Tiebout Model, American Economic Review 87(5): 977-992. The model consists of of citizens who can vote for partie and move to other jurisdictions if they expect their preferences are better served. Parties adjust their positions to increase their share in the elections.

Food supply chain innovations under public pressure

Tim Verwaart Wil Hennen Jan Buurma | Published Fri Apr 15 20:30:05 2016 | Last modified Tue Nov 27 20:11:41 2018

Aroused public opinion has led to public debates on social responsibility issues in food supply chains. This model based op opinion dynamics and the linkages between involved actors simulates the public debate leading to the transitions.

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