Discussion papers

CPM-97-24 - 1 May 1997

From Complexity to Agent Modelling and Back Again - some implications for economics

Bruce Edmonds

Presented at: The workshop on Economics and the Sciences of Complexity, Namur, Brussels, May 1997.

Abstract

I analyse complexity rom a philosophical point of view and distinguish three different kinds of complexity relevant to the modelling of economic agents: environmental complexity, the complexity of an agent’s models and the behavioural complexity. The move to considering situations of greater environmental complexity leads to the consideration of agents that evaluate their models using more than just the accuracy of their models and this leads to a greater behavioural complexity. In response to such complexity we may need to use new styles of models that can capture the new behaviour and processes, i.e. the modelling language we use might need to become more sophisticated and hence also the models we build in it.

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