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Growing Artificial Societies: Social Science from the Bottom Up

Author

Listed:
  • Joshua M. Epstein

    () (Brookings Institution)

  • Robert L. Axtell

    () (George Mason University)

Abstract

How do social structures and group behaviors arise from the interaction of individuals? Growing Artificial Societies approaches 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.

Suggested Citation

  • Joshua M. Epstein & Robert L. Axtell, 1996. "Growing Artificial Societies: Social Science from the Bottom Up," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262550253, January.
  • Handle: RePEc:mtp:titles:0262550253
    as

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    bottom up social science; Sugarscape; collective behavior;

    JEL classification:

    • D70 - Microeconomics - - Analysis of Collective Decision-Making - - - General
    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • C88 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Other Computer Software

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