Computational Model Library

This model was developed to test the usability of evolutionary computing and reinforcement learning by extending a well known agent-based model. Sugarscape (Epstein & Axtell, 1996) has been used to demonstrate migration, trade, wealth inequality, disease processes, sex, culture, and conflict. It is on conflict that this model is focused to demonstrate how machine learning methodologies could be applied.

The code is based on the Sugarscape 2 Constant Growback model, availble in the NetLogo models library. New code was added into the existing model while removing code that was not needed and modifying existing code to support the changes. Support for the original movement rule was retained while evolutionary computing, Q-Learning, and SARSA Learning were added.

Sugarscape with spice

Marco Janssen | Published Tue Jan 14 17:09:12 2020 | Last modified Fri Sep 18 16:31:42 2020

This is a variation of the Sugarspace model of Axtell and Epstein (1996) with spice and trade of sugar and spice. The model is not an exact replication since we have a somewhat simpler landscape of sugar and spice resources included, as well as a simple reproduction rule where agents with a certain accumulated wealth derive an offspring (if a nearby empty patch is available).
The model is discussed in Introduction to Agent-Based Modeling by Marco Janssen. For more information see


Yue Dou | Published Tue Dec 10 20:25:14 2019 | Last modified Wed Apr 29 13:08:15 2020

We construct a new type of agent-based model (ABM) that can simultaneously simulate land-use changes at multiple distant places (namely TeleABM, telecoupled agent-based model). We use soybean trade between Brazil and China as an example, where Brazil is the sending system and China is the receiving system because they are the world’s largest soybean exporter and importer respectively. We select one representative county in each country to calibrate and validate the model with spatio-temporal analysis of historical land-use changes and the empirical analysis of household survey data. The whole model is programmed on RePast Simphony. The most unique features of TeleABM are that it can simulate a telecoupled system and the flows between sending and receiving systems in this telecoupled system.

Our model allows simulating repeated conservation auctions in low-income countries. It is designed to assess policy-making by exploring the extent to which non-targeted repeated auctions can provide biodiversity conservation cost-effectively, while alleviating poverty. Targeting landholders in order to integrate both goals is claimed to be overambitious and underachieving because of the trade-offs they imply. The simulations offer insight on the possible outcomes that can derive from implementing conservation auctions in low-income countries, where landholders are likely to be risk averse and to face uncertainty.

Fertility Tradeoffs

Kristin Crouse | Published Tue Nov 5 04:36:42 2019 | Last modified Sun Mar 22 09:45:14 2020

Fertility Tradeoffs is a NetLogo model that illustrates the emergencent tradeoffs between the quality and quantity of offspring. Often, we associate high fitness with maximizing the number of offspring. However, under certain circumstances, it pays instead to optimize the number of offspring, having fewer offspring than is possible. When the number of offspring is reduced, more energy can be invested in each offspring, which can be beneficial for their own fitness.

This model is programmed in Python 3.6. We model how different consensus protocols and trade network topologies affect the performance of a blockchain system. The model consists of multiple trader and miner agents ( and, and one system agent ( We investigated three consensus protocols, namely proof-of-work (PoW), proof-of-stake (PoS), and delegated proof-of-stake (DPoS). We also examined three common trade network topologies: random, small-world, and scale-free. To reproduce our results, you may need to create some databases using, e.g., MySQL; or read and write some CSV files as model configurations.

Exploring Urban Shrinkage

Andrew Crooks | Published Thu Mar 19 22:15:47 2020

While the world’s total urban population continues to grow, this growth is not equal. Some cities are declining, resulting in urban shrinkage which is now a global phenomenon. Many problems emerge due to urban shrinkage including population loss, economic depression, vacant properties and the contraction of housing markets. To explore this issue, this paper presents an agent-based model stylized on spatially explicit data of Detroit Tri-county area, an area witnessing urban shrinkage. Specifically, the model examines how micro-level housing trades impact urban shrinkage by capturing interactions between sellers and buyers within different sub-housing markets. The stylized model results highlight not only how we can simulate housing transactions but the aggregate market conditions relating to urban shrinkage (i.e., the contraction of housing markets). To this end, the paper demonstrates the potential of simulation to explore urban shrinkage and potentially offers a means to test polices to alleviate this issue.

Peer reviewed B3GET

Kristin Crouse | Published Thu Nov 14 20:07:16 2019 | Last modified Tue Nov 19 17:42:04 2019

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!

Organisms, Individuals and Organizations face the dilemma of exploration vs. exploitation
Identifying the optimal trade-off between the two is a challenge
Too much exploration (e.g. gaining new knowledge) can be detrimental to day-to-day survival and too much exploitation (applying existing knowledge) could be detrimental to long term survival esp. if conditions change over time

The purpose of the model is to investigate how the amount of resources acquired (wealth/success) is related to persistence with the strategy of local exploration under different resource distributions, availability of resources over time and cost of relocation

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.

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