Growing Artificial Societies Social Science from the Bottom Up

ISBN-10: 0262550253

ISBN-13: 9780262550253

Edition: 1996

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How do social structures and group behaviors arise from the interaction of individuals? Growing Artificial Societiesapproaches this question with cutting-edge computer simulation techniques. Fundamental collective behaviors such as group formation, cultural transmission, combat, and trade are seen to "emerge" from the interaction of individual agents following a few simple rules. In their program, named Sugarscape, Epstein and Axtell begin the development of a "bottom up" social science that is capturing the attention of researchers and commentators alike. The study is part of the 2050 Project, a joint venture of the Santa Fe Institute, the World Resources Institute, and the Brookings Institution. The project is an international effort to identify conditions for a sustainable global system in the next century and to design policies to help achieve such a system. Growing Artificial Societiesis also available on CD-ROM, which includes about 50 animations that develop the scenarios described in the text. Copublished with the Brookings Institution
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Book details

List price: $32.00
Copyright year: 1996
Publisher: MIT Press
Publication date: 10/11/1996
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 224
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 1.034
Language: English

"Artificial Society" Models
Object-Oriented Implementation
Social Structures Emerge
The Sugarscape Model
Life and Death on the Sugarscape
A CompuTerrarium
Agent Social Networks
Sex, Culture, and Conflict: The Emergence of History
Sugar and Spice: Trade Comes to the Sugarscape
Markets of Neoclassical Agents
Markets of Non-Neoclassical Agents
Credit Networks
Social Computation
Disease Agents
A Society Is Born
Artificial Societies versus Traditional Models
Heterogeneous Agent Populations
Space Distinct from the Agent Population
Agent-Environment and Agent-Agent Interactions according to Simple Local Rules
Focus on Dynamics
Beyond Methodological Individualism
Collective Structures Emerge from the Bottom Up
Artificial Societies versus ALife
Cellular Automata + Agents = Sugarscape
Toward Generative Social Science: Can You Grow It?
Life and Death on the Sugarscape
In the Beginning . . . There Was Sugar
Simple Local Rules for the Environment
The Agents
Agent States
Simple Local Rules for the Agents
Artificial Society on the Sugarscape
Carrying Capacity
Selection without Sex
Wealth and Its Distribution in the Agent Population
Measures of Economic Inequality: The Gini Coefficient
Social Networks of Neighbors
Seasonal Migration
Pollution: A Negative Externality
A Social Interpretation
The Surprising Sufficiency of Simple Rules
Artificial Social Systems as Laboratories
Sex, Culture, and Conflict: The Emergence of History
Sexual Reproduction
The Theory of Evolution Brought to Life
Regimes of Population Dynamics
Nature and Nurture: The Genetic Effect of Inheritance
Genealogical Networks
Cultural Processes
Cultural Tags
Cultural Transmission
Cultural Groups
Cultural Dynamics
Vertical Transmission of Culture
Networks of Friends
Reward Equal to Accumulated Wealth
Reward Equal to a Fixed Value
Effect of Rule Changes on Emergent Structures
Combat and Assimilation: Two Modes of Group Defense
The Proto-History
Sugar and Spice: Trade Comes to the Sugarscape
Spice: A Second Commodity
The Agent Welfare Function
The Agent Movement Rule in the Presence of Two Commodities
Trade Rules
Internal Valuations
The Bargaining Rule and Local Price Formation
The Trade Algorithm
Markets of Bilateral Traders
Neoclassical Agents and Statistical Price Equilibrium
The Invisible Hand
Performance of Markets Produced by Neoclassical Traders
Carrying Capacity Is Increased by Trade
Statistical Equilibrium
Horizontal Inequality
Local Efficiency, Global Inefficiency
Far from Equilibrium Economics
Effect of the Distribution of Agent Vision on Price Variance
Non-Neoclassical Agents and Further Departures from Equilibrium
Finite Lives: Replacement
Finite Lives: Sexual Reproduction
Effect of Culturally Varying Preferences
Externalities and Price Disequilibrium: The Effect of Pollution
On the Evolution of Foresight
Emergent Economic Networks
Commodity Flows through Networks of Trade Partners
Credit Networks and the Emergence of Hierarchy
Social Computation, Emergent Computation
Summary and Conclusions
Policy Implications
Disease Processes
Models of Disease Transmission and Immune Response
Heterogeneous People, Homogeneous Models
Separate Space
Immune System Response
Binary Strings
The Immunological Response Rule
Immunological Memory as Lock-In
Disease Transmission
Multiple Diseases
Genotypes and Phenotypes
Childhood Diseases
Digital Diseases on the Sugarscape
Disease Transmission Networks
Emergent Society
Complexity and Policy
Some Extensions of the Current Model
Rule Ecologies and the "Fitness" of Maximization
A Definition of "Sustainability"
Artificial Agents + Real Landscapes = Hybrid Models
Computational Archaeology
Other Artificial Societies
A Variant of Schelling's Segregation Model
Ring World
Formal Analysis of Artificial Societies
Generative Social Science
Looking Ahead ...
Software Engineering Aspects of Artificial Societies
Summary of Rule Notation
State-Dependence of the Welfare Function
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