Agent-based models as behavioral laboratories for evolutionary anthropological research

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/110026
Title:
Agent-based models as behavioral laboratories for evolutionary anthropological research
Author:
Premo, L. S.
Affiliation:
Department of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
Citation:
Arizona Anthropologist 17:91-113. © 2006 Arizona Anthropologist
Publisher:
University of Arizona, Department of Anthropology
Journal:
Arizona Anthropologist
Issue Date:
2006
Description:
2006 Dozier Award Winner
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/110026
Abstract:
Agent-based models can provide paleoanthropologists with a view of behavioral dynamics and site formation processes as they unfold in digital caricatures of past societies and paleoenvironments. This paper argues that the agent-based methodology has the most to offer when used to conduct controlled, repeatable experiments within the context of behavioral laboratories. To illustrate the potential of this decidedly heuristic approach, I provide a case study of a simple agent-based model currently being used to investigate the evolution of Plio-Pleistocene hominin food sharing in East Africa. The results of this null model demonstrate that certain levels of ecological patchiness can facilitate the evolution of even simple food sharing strategies among equally simple hominin foragers. More generally, they demonstrate the potential that agent-based models possess for helping historical scientists act as their own informants as to what could have happened in the past.
Type:
Article
Language:
en_US
Keywords:
agent-based models; altruism; artificial societies; hominin food sharing; paleoanthropology
ISSN:
1062-1601

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorPremo, L. S.en_US
dc.date.accessioned2010-08-21T00:04:06Z-
dc.date.available2010-08-21T00:04:06Z-
dc.date.issued2006-
dc.identifier.citationArizona Anthropologist 17:91-113. © 2006 Arizona Anthropologisten_US
dc.identifier.issn1062-1601-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10150/110026-
dc.description2006 Dozier Award Winneren_US
dc.description.abstractAgent-based models can provide paleoanthropologists with a view of behavioral dynamics and site formation processes as they unfold in digital caricatures of past societies and paleoenvironments. This paper argues that the agent-based methodology has the most to offer when used to conduct controlled, repeatable experiments within the context of behavioral laboratories. To illustrate the potential of this decidedly heuristic approach, I provide a case study of a simple agent-based model currently being used to investigate the evolution of Plio-Pleistocene hominin food sharing in East Africa. The results of this null model demonstrate that certain levels of ecological patchiness can facilitate the evolution of even simple food sharing strategies among equally simple hominin foragers. More generally, they demonstrate the potential that agent-based models possess for helping historical scientists act as their own informants as to what could have happened in the past.en_US
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.publisherUniversity of Arizona, Department of Anthropologyen_US
dc.subjectagent-based modelsen_US
dc.subjectaltruismen_US
dc.subjectartificial societiesen_US
dc.subjecthominin food sharingen_US
dc.subjectpaleoanthropologyen_US
dc.titleAgent-based models as behavioral laboratories for evolutionary anthropological researchen_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
dc.contributor.departmentDepartment of Human Evolution, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropologyen_US
dc.identifier.journalArizona Anthropologisten_US
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