Simulating Government Institutions in Networked Societies

November 17, 2021

Wednesday, November 17th at 3pm, Summit Room 3346 TMCB

Advisor: Jacob Crandall

MS Thesis Proposal Abstract for Michael Richards


Modern human societies give rise to the expression of complex group dynamics between the members of said society due to the abundance of continued interactions. Of particular interest are how institutions affect these interactions between societal members, alter the resulting group dynamics, and impact society as a whole. Simulating these dynamics allows for greater insight into how they function and allows researchers to pose interesting questions and test hypotheses within a laboratory setting. We propose a novel approach to simulating institutions, particularly governments, within a networked society. This approach builds upon the Junior High Game which models a networked society such that it contains power asymmetries as well as group dynamics for both exchange and communication networks on both a group and individual level. In this work we'll take a step towards evaluating the Junior High Game's ability to simulate societies with government institutions through simulation and user study evaluating the results through the simulated society's total welfare, equality, and group dynamics of both communication and exchange networks.