Discussion papers

A challenge to the ABM/Social simulation community: *helping people agree*

Edmonds, B., Carpentras D. & Chattoe-Brown, E. (2023) The grand challenge of helping people agree and how we might go about collectively tackling it. Social Simulation Conference, Glasgow Sept. 2023. Link to PDF


Despite the fact that the world needs agreement in order to address threats, such as climate change, people find this hard, even when all concerned desire an agreement. Social simulations have explored a number of different mechanisms relevant to such processes, including those about: opinion dynamics, negotiation, social identity, collective intelligence and voting models. However these models tend to: (1) stick to their own silos so the connections between strands are only explored sporadically, (2) not engage sufficiently with real-world cases/data to be useful, and (3) avoid modelling transitions between different “modes” of interaction. We sketch some elements of a programme to bring these kinds of modelling together to address this grand challenge. We call upon the social simulation community to coordinate, with the ultimate goal of finding ways to facilitate such agreement processes, before it is too late.

Keywords: agreement, dialogue, polarisation, negotiation, social influence, voting, empirical support, phase transition.

Slides at: https://cfpm.org/slides/SSC2023%20Grand%20Challenge.pdf

Paper linked below here: