Agent-based modelling as a tool for open interdisciplinary research

S3: Practical Applications | Keynote presentation
  • Iza Romanowska
    Aarhus University

A major, yet often overlooked, advantage of using formal modelling tools is their ability to bring together evidence, data, theory and intuitions from across several scientific disciplines. In this function, Agent-based Modelling can serve as a communication framework between researchers working on the same research problem but from different disciplinary perspectives. Fostering such interdisciplinary dialogues encourages knowledge transfer and prevents the “black-boxing” of any one type of knowledge. Here, I will showcase three case studies where ABM was used to breach the disciplinary boundaries between archaeology and i. Linguistics, ii. Economy and 3. Engineering. I will argue that ABM has a particular advantage over other types of formal modelling methods due to the more intuitive description of the studied system and the close relation between the modelled entities and everyday experience. I will also argue that formal modelling methods are the ultimate step in the open science journey as they bring ideas and concepts into the realm of transparent and reproducible research.