Empirical characterisation of agent behaviours in socio-ecological systems

A. Smajgl, D.G. Brown, D.F. Valbuena Vargas, M.G.A. Huigen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

126 Citations (Scopus)


Agent-based modelling has become an important tool to investigate socio-ecological processes. Its use is partially driven by increasing demand from decision makers to provide support for understanding the potential implications of decisions in complex situations. While one of the advantages of agent-based modelling is the ability to simulate the implications of human decision-making processes explicitly, methods for providing empirical support for the representation of the behaviour of human agents have not been structured systematically. This paper develops a framework for the parameterisation of human behaviour in agent-based models and develops twelve distinct sequences for the characterisation and parameterisation of human behaviours. Examples are provided to illustrate the most important sequences. This framework is a first step towards a guide for parameterisation of human behaviour in ABM. A structured discussion within the agent-based community is needed to achieve a more definitive guideline.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)837-844
JournalEnvironmental Modelling & Software
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • models
  • validation
  • decisions
  • protocol
  • farmers
  • lessons

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