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Effect of Interaction Topology and Activation Regime in Several Multi-Agent Systems

  • Robert L. Axtell

The effects of distinct agent interaction and activation structures are compared and contrasted in several multi-agent models of social phenomena. Random graphs and lattices represent two limiting kinds of agent interaction networks studied, with so-called 'small-world' networks being an intermediate form between these two extremes. A model of retirement behavior is studied with each network type, resulting in important differences in key model outputs. Then, in the context of a model of firm formation, in which multi-agent structures (firms) are emergent, it is demonstrated that the medium of interaction -- whether through individual agents or through firms -- affects the qualitative character of the results. Finally, alternative agent activation 'schedules' are studied. In particular, two activation modes are compared: (1) all agents being active exactly once each period, and (2) each agent having a random number of activations in every period with mean 1. In many circumstances these two regimes produce indistinguishable results at the aggregate level, but in certain cases the differences between them are significant.

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Paper provided by Santa Fe Institute in its series Working Papers with number 00-07-039.

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Date of creation: Jul 2000
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Handle: RePEc:wop:safiwp:00-07-039
Contact details of provider: Postal: 1399 Hyde Park Road, Santa Fe, New Mexico 87501
Web page: http://www.santafe.edu/sfi/publications/working-papers.html

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  1. 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, June.
  2. Young, H.P., 1999. "Diffusion in Social Networks," Papers 2, Brookings Institution - Working Papers.
  3. Robert Axtell & Robert Axelrod & Joshua M. Epstein & Michael D. Cohen, 1995. "Aligning Simulation Models: A Case Study and Results," Working Papers 95-07-065, Santa Fe Institute.
  4. Glen Ellison, 2010. "Learning, Local Interaction, and Coordination," Levine's Working Paper Archive 391, David K. Levine.
  5. Robert Axtell, 1999. "The Emergence of Firms in a Population of Agents," Working Papers 99-03-019, Santa Fe Institute.
  6. Page, Scott E, 1997. "On Incentives and Updating in Agent Based Models," Computational Economics, Society for Computational Economics, vol. 10(1), pages 67-87, February.
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