Agents come to bits: Towards a constructive comprehensive taxonomy of economic entities
AbstractThis essay is an invited comment on Philip Mirowski's essay titled "Markets Come to Bits: Evolution, Computation, and Markomata in Economic Science," also to appear in JEBO. In his usual brilliant and provocative style, Mirowski argues for a constructive approach to economic modeling centered on the computational representation of markets as integrated sets of algorithms that evolve over time. This essay counters that a broader constructive approach to economic modeling can and should be taken. The recent advent of powerful computer technologies supporting Agent-Based Modeling (ABM) renders feasible the computational study of economies modeled as evolving systems of interacting agents. In ABM, an "agent" refers broadly to bundled data and behavioral methods representing an entity constituting part of a computationally constructed world. Examples of possible agent referents include individuals, social groupings, institutions (e.g., markets), biological entities such as crops, and physical entities such as transportation networks and weather. Consequently, ABM provides tremendous opportunities for economists and other social scientists to tailor the breadth and depth of the entities represented in their models to the application at hand. A simple ABM of a two-sector decentralized market economy is used for concrete illustration. Annotated pointers to related work can be accessed here: http://www.econ.iastate.edu/tesfatsi/ace.htm
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Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization.
Volume (Year): 63 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/jebo
Other versions of this item:
- Tesfatsion, Leigh S., 2007. "Agents Come to Bits: Towards a Constructive Comprehensive Taxonomy of Economic Entities," Staff General Research Papers 12513, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
- C6 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling
- D - Microeconomics
- E - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics
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- Tesfatsion, Leigh, 2006.
"Agent-Based Computational Economics: A Constructive Approach to Economic Theory,"
Handbook of Computational Economics,
in: Leigh Tesfatsion & Kenneth L. Judd (ed.), Handbook of Computational Economics, edition 1, volume 2, chapter 16, pages 831-880
- Tesfatsion, Leigh, 2006. "Agent-Based Computational Economics: A Constructive Approach to Economic Theory," Staff General Research Papers 12514, Iowa State University, Department of Economics.
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- Dan Farhat, 2011. "Bookworms versus Party Animals: An Artificial Labor Market with Human and Social Capital Accumulation," Working Papers 1103, University of Otago, Department of Economics, revised May 2011.
- Dan Farhat, 2013. "The Economics of Vampires: An Agent-based Perspective," Working Papers 1301, University of Otago, Department of Economics, revised Jan 2013.
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