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.
This Guardian Data blog is a startlingly fun and thoughtful visualization: Interactive European language map: how does everyone say cat? It allows you to enter an English word, and see, on a map of Europe, how that word would be translated into all European languages. It shows how a visualization that is complicated under the hood can have an simple and accessible interface.
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.”
Social Innovation Simulation is created using the Visual WordPress theme. Among other things, this allows for the beautiful infinite scrolling, and attractive gridded photographs. A key advantage of this format is that videos can be played right from the main page. The reader can easily sample multiple models without having to drill down.
When you’re exploring a new space (like how to model social innovations for Labs), a great way to learn more about it is to read up on the individual domains that comprise that space. Here are some of the books we have in our library.
Example of many pieces of information organized coherently: a Sankey diagram
This is the second of four reflections by Benjamin Carr on principles which allow simulations and visualizations to help us understand complex systems.
Visualization can enable the user to make sense of a lot of data in a short period of time. Ideally, a well-designed structure is displayed which an individual can use to organize incoming information. Rather than having to take in many separate pieces of information and organize them individually, the information is already arranged coherently. This facilitates the task of remembering and comprehension. Continue reading →
This is the first of four reflections by Benjamin Carr on principals which allow simulations and visualizations to help us understand complex systems.
Simulations and visualizations are, for a variety of reasons, effective at engaging the user. I find the colors, shapes, and patterns pull my attention in a way that text cannot. Another property which makes these tools engaging is their interactive capacities, as can be seen with this stock and flow diagram. In such cases, the user has the ability to change the values of important variables. The user is positioned as an active component in the production of whatever result the tool generates.