Look to existing models for inspiration (policy-relevant simulations in AnyLogic)

There are many runnable models in the AnyLogic online repository, https://www.runthemodel.com. AnyLogic is notable for supporting Systems Dynamics, Agent-based modelling, and Discrete Event simulation in the same modelling platform. They have demonstration models online which include a number of interesting categories:

I extracted a few example models with particular policy relevance. All of these are runnable in your web browser with the appropriate plug-in (Note that in order to use Java 7 you must use Safari or Firefox. Chrome does not currently support Java 7). They are stimulating to play with, and can provide inspiration for models that might work well in a Lab setting.

Need expertise from all sides of an issue? Seek out public broadcasting — Design

The Agenda broadcast an episode on safety, including food safety, relevant to our current interest in food-policy. The kind of well-informed interviews you find on public broadcasting can provide excellent qualitative information on a policy domain.

“Consumed with care: from toys from abroad to food from home, what can the consumer safely expect? What global supply chains and the promise of an ever-safer future mean to our expectations of consumer safety.”



Predator-Prey — Prototype

Screen capture from a prototype by Terry Stewart, using a simple predator-prey model, illustrating the utility of having sliders with ranges.

This prototype was an experiment in plotting widgets in kivy for use in visualizing simulation results. Model parameters can be adjusted by sliders, but these sliders allow a range of values, and the graph gives immediate feedback as the sliders are moved.

Download the code for the prototype.

Sudbury Day 4

We were up early. We had to be at the university, ready to start the meeting for 9:30. We ate and packed and then headed over. It was VERY COLD outside.

Then we were at a Laurentian building that has Ministry offices, business offices and some conference space. Talk about blending of fields! We carted all our stuff up and set up again.

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Sudbury Day 2

Brianna Smrke has been working with the simulation team at SiG@Waterloo. She blogged about our Sudbury simulation intensive at downwithvowels. We’re reposting her first-person accounts of those sessions. (Read Sudbury Day 1).

I realized (probably because people were telling me directly) that this is the first time anyone’s tried a social innovation lab with simulations. We’re trying to mash together technology and people to be able to tell the story of this system and this problem; but to do so in a way that allows others to poke around with the ideas we come up with.

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Practice trying new things (Brianna’s last OASiS post, Day 31)

Shibani and PiyuliShibani and Piyuli

Today, as I walked off of my plane and into the Delhi airport, Prashant was waiting for me. If you remember, about a month ago he was the same person who welcomed me to India. He works for the airport hotel. Now that I think of it, I probably didn’t mention his name on the blog. He just happened to be on shift again when I was arriving. A nice little coincidence.

It was a bit like groundhog day; as if the whole month hadn’t happened. I made the same mistakes trying to get through security and into the hotel. My room looks the same. And yet, of course, so many things are different.

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Dreams that don’t allow you to sleep (Day 30 of Brianna at OASiS)

For a change, you won’t hear from me today. You’ll hear from someone else. I was the note taker again at the last session of the workshop and Vijay Bhai, the executive director of the Sri Aurobindo ashram gave us this wonderful closing address. Please picture a vibrant man in his sixties (?), wearing all white, radiating wisdom and gentleness.

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