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Event: Conference on Agent-Based Modeling in Philosophy

Event date December 11, 2014 - December 13, 2014
Submission deadline June 01, 2014
Location LMU Munich
Host(s) Lee Elkin, Stephan Hartmann, Conor Mayo-Wilson, and Gregory Wheeler
Event website/information


LMU Munich

11-13 December 2014



In the past two decades, agent-based models (ABMs) have become ubiquitous in philosophy and various sciences.  ABMs have been applied, for example, to study the evolution of norms and language, to understand migration patterns of past civilizations, to investigate how population levels change in ecosystems over time, and more.  In contrast with classical economic models or population-level models in biology, ABMs are praised for their lack of assumptions and their flexibility.  Nonetheless, many of the methodological and epistemological questions raised by ABMs have yet to be fully articulated and answered.  For example, there are unresolved debates about how
to test (or “validate”) ABMs, about the scope of their applicability in philosophy and the sciences, and about their implications or our understanding of reduction, emergence, and complexity in the sciences.  This conference aims to bring together an interdisciplinary group of researchers aimed at understanding the foundations of agent-based modeling and how the practice can inform and be informed by philosophy.

Topics of the conference will include, but will not be limited to:

– Advantages and disadvantages of agent-based models in relation to classical economic and
biological models
– Testing and/or “validating” agent-based models
– How agent-based models inform discussions of reduction and/or emergence in the sciences
– Agent-based models and complexity
– Applications of ABMs in philosophy, which may include, but is not limited to, investigating the
evolution of norms and/or language, or the study of dynamics of scientific communities and
theory/paradigm change

We invite submissions of extended abstracts of 750-1000 words for contributed talks by 1 June 2014.
Decisions will be made by 15 June 2014.

KEYNOTE SPEAKERS: Jason Alexander (LSE), Rosaria Conte (Rome), Scott Page (Michigan), Michael
Weisberg (Penn), and Kevin Zollman (SMU)

ORGANIZERS: Lee Elkin, Stephan Hartmann, Conor Mayo-Wilson, and Gregory Wheeler

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