IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

How Economists Can Get Alife: Abbreviated Version

  • Leigh Tesfatsion

    (Iowa State University)

Artificial life (alife) is the bottom-up study of basic phenomena commonly associated with living agents, such as self- replication, evolution, adaptation, self-organization, exploitation, competition, cooperation, and social network formation. Alife complements the traditional biological and social sciences concerned with the analytical, laboratory, and field study of living organisms by attempting to simulate or synthesize these basic phenomena within computers, robots, and other man-made media. One goal is to enhance the understanding of actual and potential life processes. A second goal is to use nature as an inspiration for the development of solution algorithms for difficult optimization problems characterized by high- dimensional search domains, nonlinearities, and/or multiple local optima. This paper presents a brief overview of alife, stressing aspects especially relevant for the study of decentralized market economies. In particular, a recently developed trade network game (TNG) is used to illustrate how the basic alife paradigm might be specialized to economics. This type of research has recently come to be known as agent- based computational economics.

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

File URL:
Download Restriction: no

Paper provided by EconWPA in its series Computational Economics with number 9501001.

in new window

Length: 9 pages
Date of creation: 13 Jan 1995
Date of revision: 21 Jun 1998
Handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpco:9501001
Note: 9 pages, html document.
Contact details of provider: Web page:

No references listed on IDEAS
You can help add them by filling out this form.

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:wpa:wuwpco:9501001. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (EconWPA)

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.