The class is on Tuesday and Thursday from 4-5:15 pm in Layfayette 309. The goal of the course is to enhance understanding of the application of computers and simulation methods to economics. Topics include problems from micro and macroeconomics, game theory and general equilibrium, cellular automata and agent-based modeling with learning and evolution. Text: There are no required textbooks, but many of the readings will come from Nigel Gilbert and Klaus G. Troitzsch, Simulation for the Social Scientist and Nigel Gilbert, Agent Based Models Homework, exams and a research paper are required. Paper: A 4,000 word paper is required presenting a computational model. Students are expected to choose a topic at the beginning of the semester and work in consultation with the professor during the term. The last part of the course (see below) will provide explicit instructions for how the research paper is to be presented. There are milestone assignments for the paper during the term. Late assignments will be accepted for 50 percent credit. Prerequisites: EC 170, 171 172 or consent of instructor. Students should be thoroughly familiar with Excel and have completed the courses in mathematics required for the economics major. Previous programming experience is helpful but is not a prerequisite. Exams: There will be a final and a midterm. Exams will consist of a mixture of problems, short answer and essay questions and will cover material from lectures and the readings. Grades are determined based on the midterm (20%) the final exam (30%), paper (30%), homework (15%) and class participation (5%). Software: Excel and NetLogo. Please download and work through the three NetLogo tutorials. Note that there there is an extensive manual and dictionary for the program as well as numerous sample programs and code snippets. All homework problems are to be submitted electronically with file name 230s11h1_name.nlogo or .xls. Mathematics: Algebra and some basic calculus will be used in the course. The course syllabus is updated throughout the semester. Dates are approximate.
Part 1: Simple computational modelsJan 18-Feb 3. Examples from basic economic theory; linear algebra and linear programming in Excel. readings: Gilbert and Troitczsch, Simulation and social science. Gilbert, The Idea of Agent Based Models. Anonymous, The Schelling Model. Gilbert and Troitczsch, Simulation as a method, Epstein, Generative social science, Horgan, From complexity to perplexity. Homework: 230s11h1.xls. Paper: Paper topic and outline due Thursday 3 Feb.
Part 2: Microsimulations, cellular automataFeb 8-17 readings: Gilbert, Using NetLogo to Build Model. Gilbert and Troitczsch, Hawk-Dove-Law Abider, pp. 32-37. Gilbert and Troitczsch, Cellular Automata . Paper: Literature survey Thursday 17 Feb.
Part 3: Agent Based ModelsFeb 22-Mar 1. readings: Gilbert and Troitczsch Multi-Agent Models. Gilbert and Troitczsch Developing multi-agent systems. Homework: 230s11h3.nlogo.
Midterm exam: 3 March 2011 in class covering all readings and class material to date.
Spring Break! 7-11 March 2011
Part 4: Multi-agent SystemsMar 15- April 21. readings: Gilbert and Troitczsch, Learning and evolutionary models. Holland, Genetic Algorithms, Gilbert and Troitczsch Homework: 230s11h4.nlogo. Paper: Model code and preliminary simulations due Thursday 21 April.
Part 5: Writing a research paperApril 26-May-3. readings: Gilbert ``Reporting Agent Based Model Research" pp. 65-7 in Agent Based Models . Paper: Paper due Tuesday 3 May.
Final Exam comprehensive--1 hr and 15 minutes. Thursday 12 May 4:30-5:45 pm Layfayette L309
UVM Final exam schedule-Spring 2011