Centre for Policy Modelling News

Sorry our main website is down whilst we try and fix it. Until that time http://cfpm.org is redirected to here.

23 July, 2018

Two visualisations by Luz Molina

Both are dynamic - you can interact with them. Click on the pictures to try them.

The first #visualization shows the fish trade in US dollars between 2004 and 2015.

The second is a map that shows where the different fish species from the North Atlantic are caught.

19 July, 2018

Sorry, our main website is down...

... for the moment we will redirect http://cfpm.org to here.  "Normal service will resumed as soon as possible". Meanwhile here is a picture of Ruth showing what she thinks of the situation.


20 June, 2018

New Paper in RS Open Science: "Computational modelling for decision-making: where, why, what, who and how"

Computational modelling for decision-making: where, why, what, who and how

by Muffy Calder, Claire Craig, Dave Culley, Richard de Cani, Christl A. Donnelly, Rowan Douglas, Bruce Edmonds, Jonathon Gascoigne, Nigel Gilbert, Caroline Hargrove, Derwen Hinds, David C. Lane, Dervilla Mitchell, Giles Pavey, David Robertson, Bridget Rosewell, Spencer Sherwin, Mark Walport, Alan Wilson

Published: 20 June 2018. DOI: 10.1098/rsos.172096 Royal Society Open Science


In order to deal with an increasingly complex world, we need ever more sophisticated computational models that can help us make decisions wisely and understand the potential consequences of choices. But creating a model requires far more than just raw data and technical skills: it requires a close collaboration between model commissioners, developers, users and reviewers. Good modelling requires its users and commissioners to understand more about the whole process, including the different kinds of purpose a model can have and the different technical bases. This paper offers a guide to the process of commissioning, developing and deploying models across a wide range of domains from public policy to science and engineering. It provides two checklists to help potential modellers, commissioners and users ensure they have considered the most significant factors that will determine success. We conclude there is a need to reinforce modelling as a discipline, so that misconstruction is less likely; to increase understanding of modelling in all domains, so that the misuse of models is reduced; and to bring commissioners closer to modelling, so that the results are more useful.

This is a summary of the UK Government's Blackett report: "Computational Modelling: Technological Futures"

Available at: http://rsos.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/5/6/172096 (Open Access)


09 June, 2018

New Journal: Socio-Cognitive Systems

Frank Dignum and I have started this new journal, which we will edit. The reason for this is that we feel that the cognitive and the social need to be studied together. That is both cognitive processes and social processes explicitly represented in the same simulations/systems. Much of human cognition is fundamentally social and makes no sense away from its social context. Much social phenomena can only occur (and thus be understood) when there is sufficient cognitive hooks (e.g. context-sensitivity or face recognition). Thus we hope to focus and stimulate research which does not just look at one side (cognitive or social) with only a nod to the other, but integrates the two aspects and understands them together.

More details about the journal can be found at: http://www.springer.com/42419

27 April, 2018

2nd Edition of "Simulating Social Complexity" is out

The second edition of the handbook Simulating Social Complexity, edited by Bruce Edmonds and Ruth Meyer, has now been published by Springer and is available as a hardcover or eBook (on Springer Link).

This volume examines all aspects of using agent or individual-based simulation to investigate social systems. Social systems include all those systems where the components have individual agency but also interact with each other. This includes human societies, all kinds of groups, and increasingly socio-technical systems where the internet-based devices form the substrate for interaction. These systems are central to our lives, but are among the most complex known. The complexity often makes analytic approaches infeasible but, on the other hand, natural language approaches are also inadequate for relating intricate cause and effect. This is why individual and agent-based computational approaches hold out the possibility of new and deeper understanding of such systems.

This second edition adds new chapters on different modelling purposes and applying software engineering methods to simulation development. Revised existing content of other chapters keeps the book up-to-date with recent developments. This volume will help those new to the field avoid “reinventing the wheel” each time, and give them a solid and wide grounding in the essential issues. It will also help those already in the field by providing accessible overviews of current thought. The material is divided into four sections: Introduction, Methodology, Mechanisms, and Applications.

For a preview and the complete table of contents see: