Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=1642003
 
 

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From Theory to Simulation:The Dynamic Political Hierarchy in Country Virtualization Models


Ian S. Lustick


University of Pennsylvania; Lustick Consulting

Brandon Alcorn


affiliation not provided to SSRN

Miguel Garces


Lustick Consulting

Alicia Ruvinsky


affiliation not provided to SSRN

July 1, 2010

APSA 2010 Annual Meeting Paper

Abstract:     
This paper suggests that computer-assisted agent-based modeling has the ability to move beyond abstract representations of political problems to theoretically sound virtualizations of real-world polities capable of producing probabilistic forecasts from distributions of stochastically perturbed model trajectories. In contrast to statistical approaches, this technique encompasses both prediction and explanation, with every distinctive trajectory traceable backward from the occurrence or non-occurrence of an event of interest through the branching points and mechanisms that led to it. In this paper we illustrate our technique for building a country-scale model from corroborated theories, focusing on the “Dynamic Political Hierarchy” module that integrates theories of cross-cutting cleavages, nested institutions, and dynamic loyalties. We present our forecasts for significant political events in Thailand for the year August 2010-July 2011. Drawing on this case we demonstrate how the challenges of internal validity can be met in complex formal models and conclude by emphasizing the importance of advances in visualization techniques for parsing large amounts of interrelated time-series data.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 22

Keywords: Thailand,agent-based model,virtualization,forecasts,cleavages,computer,simulation, institutions,regime

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Date posted: July 19, 2010 ; Last revised: September 15, 2010

Suggested Citation

Lustick, Ian S. and Alcorn, Brandon and Garces, Miguel and Ruvinsky, Alicia, From Theory to Simulation:The Dynamic Political Hierarchy in Country Virtualization Models (July 1, 2010). APSA 2010 Annual Meeting Paper. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1642003

Contact Information

Ian S. Lustick (Contact Author)
University of Pennsylvania ( email )
3440 Market St.
Suite 300
Philadelphia, PA 19104
United States
215-898-5719 (Phone)
Lustick Consulting
PA
United States
Brandon Alcorn
affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )
Miguel Garces
Lustick Consulting ( email )
PA
United States
610.664.1891 (Phone)
HOME PAGE: http://www.lustickconsulting.com
Alicia Ruvinsky
affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )
Feedback to SSRN


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