Social Identity in Agent-based Models

Studying human behaviour in and between groups: combing the Social Identity Approach (SIA) and Social Simulation.

In this network we push the frontiers in understanding human group behaviour using social simulation. We aim to do this by

  • Initiating and maintaining a conversation about SIA in our network,

  • Providing an overview of the state of the art of SIA in agent-based models (ABMs),

  • Formalising SIA in collaboration with experts, and

  • Applying SIA & ABM in a variety of contexts.

Many challenges we face have individuals that feel as part of a group at the heart of the problem and solution. Examples are the overcoming of resource over-exploitance with collective action, social movements, engaging in protest, or online polarisation. Understanding such developments or problems requires an understanding of the social (within and between) group dynamics.

SIA is a promising approach from the social sciences that describes how people behave while being part of a group, how groups interact and how these interactions and ‘appropriate group behaviours’ can change over time.

Agent-based modelling on the other hand, is a powerful approach to address complex social science questions in ways that allow for studying over-time dynamics and causal mechanisms in a systematic and controlled manner.

We regard the combination of SIA & ABM as a promising combination that enables us to push the frontiers in understanding human (group) behaviour in its social environment.

Group output

Wijermans, N., Scholz, G., Paolillo, R., Schröder, T., Chappin, E., Craig, T. and Templeton, A. (2022) Models in Social Psychology and Agent-Based Social simulation - an interdisciplinary conversation on similarities and differences. Review of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation, 4 Oct 2022.

Work in progress

  • Review on ABMs of SIA

  • Special issue ABMs of SIA