From System Dynamics and Discrete Event to Practical Agent Based Modeling: Reasons, Techniques, Tools

This paper may be considered as a practical reference for those who wish to add (now sufficiently matured) Agent Based modeling to their analysis toolkit and may or may not have some System Dynamics or Discrete Event modeling background. We focus on systems that contain large numbers of active objects (people, business units, animals, vehicles, or even things like projects, stocks, products, etc. that have timing, event ordering or other kind of individual behavior associated with them). We compare the three major paradigms in simulation modeling: System Dynamics, Discrete Event and Agent Based Modeling with respect to how they approach such systems. We show in detail how an Agent Based model can be built from an existing System Dynamics or a Discrete Event model and then show how easily it can be further enhanced to capture much more complicated behavior, dependencies and interactions thus providing for deeper insight in the system being modeled.

Optimizing Freight Transportation Policies for Sustainability - A Simulation-Based Investigation of Freight Transportation Policy Planning and Supply Chains

Regional freight transportation policy planning is a difficult task, as few policy-planners have adequate tools to aid their understanding of how various policy formulations affect this complex, socio-technical system. In this paper, we develop a proof-of-concept model to simulate the impacts of public policies on freight transportation in a simulated region. We use the techniques of multi-disciplinary system design and optimization to analyze the formulation of regional freight transportation policies and examine the relative effects of policies and exogenous forces on the region in order to provide insight into the policy-planning process. Both single objective and multi-objective analysis is performed to provide policy-planners with a clear understanding of the trade-offs made in policy formulation.

A Spatio Temporal Simulation Model for Evaluating Delinquency and Crime Policies

System Dynamics, has been useful for a variety of disciplines; however, it has limitations in showing a geographical representation of the models under study. This paper proposes a methodology based on layered vectors which allows the use a city’s census information to feed a Geographic Information System (GIS). The GIS objects implemented into System Dynamics and located at coordinates X.Y.Z become the entry parameters for the simulation.

A multi-paradigm, whole system view of health and social care for age-related macular degeneration

This paper presents a hybrid simulation model for the management of an eye condition called age-related macular degeneration, which particularly affects the elderly. The model represents not only the detailed clinical progression of disease in an individual, but also the organization of the hospital clinic in which patients with this condition are treated and the wider environment in which these patients live (and their social care needs, if any, are met). The model permits a ‘whole system’ societal view which captures the interactions between the health and social care systems

Advancement simulation of tunnel boring machines

In mechanized tunneling a significant loss of performance resulting from weak spots in the supply chain or unforeseen geological conditions is a frequent and costly problem. Furthermore, disturbances of critical machine components can have such impact on the production that unforeseen modifications become necessary. Due to the sequential character the malfunction of one element might evoke cascading-effects which may result in a complete standstill of the tunneling progress. Transparent evaluation of applicable tunnel boring machine designs is essential in order to improve the productivity, avoid unplanned interruptions and to estimate the project duration in general. In order to meet these defiances, this paper presents a multimethod simulation model to investigate the advancement rate of tunnel boring machines. Processrelated disturbances can be considered easily within the presented simulation model. Simulation experiments demonstrate the purposive functionality of the model and visualize the significant influence of technical failure on the overall project performance

Hybrid simulation with loosely coupled system dynamics and agent-based models for prospective health technology assessments

Due to the ageing of the world population, the demand for technology innovations in healthcare is growing rapidly. All stakeholders (e.g., patients, healthcare providers and health industry) can take profit of innovative products, but the development degenerates often into a time consuming and cost-intensive process. Prospective Health Technology Assessment (ProHTA) is a new approach that combines the knowledge of an interdisciplinary team and uses simulation techniques to indicate the effects of new innovations early before the expensive and risky development phase begins. In this paper, we describe an approach with loosely coupled system dynamics and agent-based models within a hybrid simulation environment for ProHTA as well as a use-case scenario with an innovative stroke technology

How to build a combined agent based / system dynamics model in AnyLogic

  AnyLogic allows you to build a simulation model using multiple methods: System Dynamics, Agent Based and Discrete Event (Process‐centric) modeling. Moreover, you can combine different methods in one model: put agents into an environment whose dynamics is defined in SD style, use process diagrams or SD to define internals of agents, etc, etc. Any kind of mixed architecture is possible due to flexible object‐oriented AnyLogic modeling language. The choice of model architecture (how to partition...

Understanding retail productivity by simulating management practices

The retail sector has been identified as one of the biggest contributors to the productivity gap that persists between the UK, Europe and the USA. It is well documented that measures of UK retail productivity rank lower than those of countries with comparably developed economies. Intuitively, it seems likely that management practices are linked to a company’s productivity and performance. Significant research has been done to investigate the productivity gap and identify problems involved in estimating the size of the gap; for example the comparability of productivity indices, historical influences, general measurement issues, and varying sectoral contributions. Best practice guidelines have been developed and published, but there remains considerable inconsistency and uncertainty regarding how these are implemented and manifested at the level of the work place. Indeed, a recent report on UK productivity asserted that, “... the key to productivity remains what happens inside the firm and this is something of a ‘black box’”. Siebers and colleagues conducted a comprehensive literature review of this research area to assess linkages between management practices and firm level productivity. The authors concluded that management practices are multidimensional constructs that generally do not demonstrate a straightforward relationship with productivity variables. Empirical evidence affirms that management practices must be context specific to be effective, and in turn productivity indices must also reflect a particular organization’s activities on a local level to be a valid indicator of performance