Simulating human behavior for understanding and managing environmental resource use

Wander Jager*, Hans Joachim Mosler

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

48 Citations (Scopus)


Computer simulation allows for the experimental study of dynamic interactions between human behavior and complex environmental systems. Behavioral determinants and processes as identified in social-scientific theory may be formalized in simulated agents to obtain a better understanding of man-environment interactions and of policy measures aimed at managing these interactions. A number of exemplary agent-based simulation studies is discussed to demonstrate how simulations can be used to identify behavioral determinants and processes underlying environmental problems, and to explore the possible effects of policy strategies. Finally, we highlight how agent-based simulation may contribute to our understanding of the dynamics of environmental resources, and how to manage them in a sustainable way.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-116
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Social Issues
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2007



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