Agent-based modeling (ABM) developed as a method to simulate systems that include a number of agents – farmers, households, governments as well as biological organisms – that make decisions and interact according to certain rules. In environmental modeling, ABM is one of the best ways to explicitly account for human behavior, and to quantify cumulative actions of various actors distributed over the spatial landscape. This clinic provides an introduction to ABM and covers such topics as:
- Modeling heterogeneous agents that vary in attributes and follow different decision-strategies
- Going beyond rational optimization and accommodating bounded rationality
- Designing/representing agents’ interactions and learning.
The clinic provides hands-on examples using the open-source modeling environment NetLogo https://ccl.northwestern.edu/netlogo
. While no prior knowledge of NetLogo is required, participants are welcome to explore its super user-friendly tutorial. The clinic concludes with highlighting the current trends in ABM such as its applications in climate change research, participatory modeling and its potential to link with other types of simulations.