The general simulation projects we are currently working on. The group works on topics related to social simulations in different contexts. This includes methodological as well as content-related work. In many areas, the focus is on the use of Prolog as a simulation language.

DMASS - A Distributed Multi Agent System for Social Simulation

This is -like SMASS- an action centered system, but it runs on properly distributed hardware (transputer systems). On the hardware level, each actor is represented by one processor and the appertaining memory. All relations and interactions are executed in terms of exchange of messages via hard wired links. The system is programmed in a distributed version of PROLOG Brain Aid Prolog which yields a practically unrestricted range of message contents and thus has a big advantage over most other programmes struggling with particular formats for message contents. Results can be depicted with the graphics package from SMASS. Alas, there are no more active transputers systems available.

Brendel, K. R. 2010. Parallele oder Sequentielle Simulationsmethode?, Herbert Utz Verlag, München.

Balzer, W. and Brendel, K. 1996. DMASS: A Distributed Multi-Agent System for Simulation in Social Science, manuscript, (see DMASS paper).

Simulation of Scientific Communities

Science itself can be viewed and studied from different perspectives. The focus here is on the social relationships between the actors. In different approaches we examine processes within science as well as the system as a whole.

Kurzawe, D. 2023. Die Dynamik von Forschung und Gesellschaft Simulationen von Wissenschaftsprozessen. Olms Verlag, Hildesheim.

Networks in Prolog

Especially in the field of machine learning and knowledge representation, networks are used in various ways. There is a lot of movement in this field at the moment and new hardware is opening up a variety of use cases. We look at various possible applications and in particular their applicability with Prolog.

Our Book about Artificial Societies (German)

The book Künstliche Gesellschaften - mit PROLOG introduces the subject area. In a mixture of practical examples and theory, the implementation of social simulations using the programming language Prolog is shown. We created the website with additional content for the book. Additional examples and a introduction into Prolog programming will give you all the tools for your own simulation project.

Balzer, W., Kurzawe, D. and Manhart, K. 2014 Künstliche Gesellschaften - mit PROLOG, Vandenhoek und Rupprecht, Göttingen.

Review Systems

Review systems are used in various areas of science, but also in other areas of society. We investigate approaches of review processes and their effects on different frames of reference.

A General Frame for Artificial Societies

We are developing a simple PROLOG frame in which the main ingredients for an artificial society are represented.

Balzer, W., Brendel, K. R. and Hofmann, S. 2010. A Simple Frame for Artificial Societies. In: Ernst, A. and Kuhn, S. (eds.), Proceedings of the 3rd World Congress on Social Simulation WCSS2010 (CD-ROM), Kassel Germany: Center for Environmental Systems Research, University of Kassel. (see WCSS10 paper).

Balzer, W., Brendel, K. R. and Hofmann, S. 2012. How Can We Simulate a Society?. In: Salzburger Geographische Arbeiten, Band 48, S. 111 - 120, Salzburg.

Balzer, W., Brendel, K. R. and Hofmann, S. 2008. Künstliche Gesellschaften, Facta Philosophica 10, 3-24.

Balzer, W., Kurzawe, D. and Manhart, K. 2014. Künstliche Gesellschaften mit PROLOG. V+R Academic (Verlagsgruppe Vandenhoeck und Ruprecht), Göttingen. (see also

Simulating Crises

Our action-type based macro model for crises was developed during 1989-92. The actors here are states or groups. The goals of the actors are partly inconsistent. This leads to plans which cannot fully satisfied. The updates of plans can sharpen the tension or soften it. A formal algorithm is available, but not implemented.

A first simulation programme for political crises based on our crises model was written by D. Will. This PROLOG programme uses action-types, plans, conflicting plans, planning cones and goals.

Will, D. 2000. Krisensimulation mit abstrakten Handlungstypen: Ein neuer, methodischer > Ansatz. Dissertation, University of Munich.

Balzer, W. 1996. A Theory of Binary Crises, in: R.K.Huber and R.Avenhaus (eds.), Models for Security Policy in the Post-Cold War Era, Baden Baden: Nomos, 233-52.

Balzer, W. and Sander, J. 1999. Towards the Qualitative, Plan-Based Simulation of International Crises, European Journal of Operational Research 116, 461-76.

Sander, J. 1993. Theoretische Grundlagen für rechnergestützte Krisensimulation und -Beratung, Forschungsberichte aus dem Institut für Statistik und Wissenschaftstheorie der Üniversität München, Nr. 44.

Balzer, W., Gayhoff, A. und Sander, J. 1992. Structural Models of International Crises, manuscript, DFG Ba 678/4.

Theory of Science

We use and improve the structuralist framework which was developed in the last fourty years. We work on simulation programmes for theory developments.

In a programme by D. Kurzawe the hypotheses of a theory are evaluated by researchers and learners relative to data of the theory. A program by J. Urban simulates ‘blind’ flows of changes induced by confirming and disconfirming events in theory-nets. This programme is blind because the contents of the theories are not specified.

Kurzawe, D. 2010. Simulation von Theoriebewertungen, MA-Thesis, Universität München. Urban, J. 1995. Zusammenspiel von Problemlösestrategien und Theorie-Entwicklung: Ein Ansatz zur Simulation, MA-Thesis, Universität München.

Simulations from Psychology and Sociology

A simulation of joint actions of women groups.

Joint actions are generated purely by the given believe and intention bases of the actors and by ’empirical’ procedures of choice of actions. Actions are represented by PROLOG facts. Different systems of actions emerge from different believe bases. Realistically group structures could be observed.

Hofmann, S. 2009: Dynamik sozialer Praktiken: Simulation gemeinsamer Unternehmungen von Frauengruppen, Wiesbaden, VS Research.

Hofmann, S. 2002. The Social Practice of a Woman’s Group: A First Simulation. In: Meggle, G. (ed.). Social Facts and Collective Intentionality, 151-165, Frankfurt/Main. Programmes from the domain of psychology.

Two PROLOG programmes come from psychological well-known group preference systems. The interpretations of the preferences are determined by empirical questionnaires, for instance ‘I like X’.

Manhart, K. 1995. KI-Modelle in den Sozialwissenschaften, Oldenbourg Verlag, München.

Simulation of Economic Systems

A Power Based Programme for Social Institutions

This Prolog programme describes the macro and micro levels of institutions. It works with action types and uses a basic notion of exercise of power on the micro and macro level. The main example was a publishing company. The programme was written by J. Tazarki.

Tazarki, J. (see now also under the name J. Sareiter). 1995. Künstliche Intelligenz in der Sozialwissenschaft am Beispiel einer sozialen Institution, Dissertation, University of Munich.

Balzer, W. 1990. A Basic Model for Social Institutions, Journal of Mathematical Sociology 16, 1-29.

Balzer, W. 1993. Soziale Institutionen, de Gruyter, Berlin.

A simulation programme for genetically steered exchange systems.

This program works on the mirco level of action-types. Some basic types of actions are dynamically changed by a genetic algorithm.

Pitz, T. 2000. Anwendung Genetischer Algorithmen auf Handlungsbäume in Multiagentensystemen zur Simulation von sozialen Handelns, Peter Lang Verlag, Frankfurt/Main.

A simulation programme for the three economic features: produce, protect and predate.

Three kinds of utilities are distinguished for each actor. Each actor can produce, protect and predate (‘PPP’) commodities in variable quantities. Through a game theoretic equation an actor will execute just one of the three kinds of actions in one period.

Albert, A. and Balzer, W. 2000. Towards Computational Institutional Analysis: Discrete Simulation of a 3P-Model, in: Ballot, G. and Weisbuch, G. (eds.) Applications of Simulation of to Social Sciences, Hermes Science Publisher Ltd., Oxford, 195 - 208.