This is the era of Big Data and computational social science. It is an era that requires tools which can do more than visualise data but also model the complex relation between data and human action, and interaction. Agent-Based Models (ABM) - computational models which simulate human action and interaction – do just that. This textbook explains how to design and build ABM and how to link the models to Geographical Information Systems. It guides you from the basics through to constructing more complex models which work with data and human behaviour in a spatial context. All of the fundamental concepts are explained and related to practical examples to facilitate learning (with models developed in NetLogo with all code examples available on the accompanying website). You will be able to use these models to develop your own applications and link, where appropriate, to Geographical Information Systems. All of the key ideas and methods are explained in detail: • geographical modelling; • an introduction to ABM; • the fundamentals of Geographical Information Science; • why ABM and GIS; • using QGIS; • designing and building an ABM; • calibration and validation; • modelling human behaviour; • visualisation and 3D ABM; • using Big Geosocial Data, GIS and ABM. An applied primer, that provides fundamental knowledge and practical skills, it will provide you with the skills to build and run your own models, and to begin your own research projects.



Chapter Outline

Networks play a critical role in our lives. Our movements are constrained to physical networks (e.g. roads), our social networks determine the people we are likely to interact with, and more recently cyber networks (e.g. social media services and mobile telephone networks) constrain our communications. This chapter provides a brief introduction to such networks and shows how they can be integrated into agent-based models. A model is introduced that demonstrates how to navigate agents along a physical road network (this is a common requirement for spatially explicit agent-based models). The chapter concludes with a discussion about how networks can be combined to study real world phenomena.

Box 8.1 Models introduced in this chapter

  • Undirected Network Demo and Directed Network Demo: Simple examples illustrating how ...
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