My profound interest in networks convinced me to work in these subjects and start my master project on an application of social network analysis for detecting organized fraud in Automobile insurance, which helps to flag groups of fraudsters. The key point of this project is simply to find fraudulent rings, while the most of traditional methods have only taken opportunistic fraud into consideration. My duty in research is to design an algorithm for identifying cyclic components, then to be compared with theoretical ones. This project showed me how networks are used in the analysis of relations.
My PHD project focuses on understanding factors influencing individual sustainable consumption behaviour and how these factors could promote a sustainability transition.
Two themes unite my research: a commitment to methodological creativity and innovation as expressed in my work with computational social sciences, and an interest in the political economy of “globalization,” particularly its implications for the ontological claims of international relations theory.
I have demonstrated how the methods of computational social sciences can model bargaining and social choice problems for which traditional game theory has found only indeterminate and multiple equilibria. My June 2008 article in International Studies Quarterly (“Coordination in Large Numbers,” vol. 52, no. 2) illustrates that, contrary to the expectation of collective action theory, large groups may enjoy informational advantages that allow players with incomplete information to solve difficult three-choice coordination games. I extend this analysis in my 2009 paper at the International Studies Association annual convention, in which I apply ideas from evolutionary game theory to model learning processes among players faced with coordination and commitment problems. Currently I am extending this research to include social network theory as a means of modeling explicitly the patterns of interaction in large-n (i.e. greater than two) player coordination and cooperation games. I argue in my paper at the 2009 American Political Science Association annual convention that computational social science—the synthesis of agent-based modeling, social network analysis and evolutionary game theory—empowers scholars to analyze a broad range of previously indeterminate bargaining problems. I also argue this synthesis gives researchers purchase on two of the central debates in international political economy scholarship. By modeling explicitly processes of preference formation, computational social science moves beyond the rational actor model and endogenizes the processes of learning that constructivists have identified as essential to understanding change in the international system. This focus on the micro foundations of international political economy in turn allows researchers to understand how social structural features emerge and constrain actor choices. Computational social science thus allows IPE to formalize and generalize our understandings of mutual constitution and systemic change, an observation that explains the paradoxical interest of constructivists like Ian Lustick and Matthew Hoffmann in the formal methods of computational social science. Currently I am writing a manuscript that develops these ideas and applies them to several challenges of globalization: developing institutions to manage common pool resources; reforming capital adequacy standards for banks; and understanding cascading failures in global networks.
While computational social science increasingly informs my research, I have also contributed to debates about the epistemological claims of computational social science. My chapter with James N. Rosenau in Complexity in World Politics (ed. by Neil E. Harrison, SUNY Press 2006) argues that agent-based modeling suffers from underdeveloped and hidden epistemological and ontological commitments. On a more light-hearted note, my article in PS: Political Science and Politics (“Clocks, Not Dartboards,” vol. 39, no. 3, July 2006) discusses problems with pseudo-random number generators and illustrates how they can surprise unsuspecting teachers and researchers.
Andrew J. Collins, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at Old Dominion University in the Department of Engineering Management and Systems Engineering. He has a Ph.D. in Operations Research from the University of Southampton, and his undergraduate degree in Mathematics was from the University of Oxford. He has published over 80 peer-review articles. He has been the Principal Investigator on projects funded to the amount of approximately $7 million. Dr. Collins has developed several research simulations including an award-winning investigation into the foreclosure contagion that incorporated social networks.
Guido Fioretti, born 1964, graduated in Electronic Engineering in 1991 at La Sapienza University, Rome. In 1995, he received a PhD in Economics from this same university. Guido Fioretti is currently a lecturer of Organization Science at the University of Bologna.
I am interested in combining social with cognitive sciences in order to model decision-making facing uncertainty. I am particularly interested in connectionist models of individual and organizational decision-making.
I may make use of agent-based models, statistical network analysis, neural networks, evidence theory, cognitive maps as well as qualitative research, with no preference for any particular method. I dislike theoretical equilibrium models and empirical research based on testing obvious hypotheses.
Dr. Morteza Mahmoudzadeh is an assitant professor at the University of Azad at Tabriz in the Department of Managent and the director of the Policy Modeling Research Lab. Dr. Mahmoudzadeh did a degree in Software Engineering and a PhD in System Sciences. Dr. Mahmoudzadeh currently works on different regional and national wide projects about modeling sustaiblity and resilience of industrial ecosystems, innovation networks and socio-environmental systems. He also works on hybrid models of opinion dynamics and agent based models specifically in the field of modeling customers behavior and developing managerial tools for strategic marketing policy testing. His team at Policy Modeling Research Lab. currently work on developing a web based tool with python for systems modeling using system dynamics, Messa framework for agent-based modeling and Social Networks Analysis.
Modeling Complex systems, Simulation: System Dynamics, Agent Based and Discrete Event
System and Complexity Theory
I have been involved in agent-based modelling since the early nineties with a consistent attention to methdological improvement, institutional development and empirical issues. My mission is that ABM should be a routinely accepted research method (with a robust methodology) across the social sciences. To this end I have built diverse models and participated in research projects across economics, law, medicine, psychology, anthropology and sociology. I took a DPhil in economics on adaptive firm behaviour and then was involved in two research projects on money management and farmer decision making. Since 2006 I have worked at the Department of Sociology (now the School of Media, Communication and Sociology) at the University of Leicester. I was involved in the founding of JASSS and (more recently RofASSS https://rofasss.org) and have regularly served on the review panels for international conferences in the ABM community.
Decision making, research design and research methods, social networks, innovation diffusion, secondhand markets.
social simulation, Multiagent Systems, Process Algebra, Game Theory
Down Networks is a real time, progressively agile non profit startup whose goals are to fund its research via pragmatically aggressive altruistic entrepreneurial pursuits informed by proprietary in-house techniques, open source technology and refined scientific methodology.