Water Controversies Between Conflict and Cooperation: Agent-Based Models for Non-traditional Security

Stefania Paladini

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


In the last decade, a lot of attention has been increasingly devoted to ABMs (Agent-Based Models), facilitated also by the availability of computational power and open-source platforms. ABMs are thus becoming especially popular in social and political sciences for modelling complex situations with multiple actors that can evolve in highly unpredictable scenarios, due to a series of endogenous and exogenous variables often difficult to identify and even less to measure and predict. Conflicts and wars often qualify as ones. The aim of the present paper is to apply ABMs to analyse the complex issues arising from dam development on the Mekong River and the endless controversies this development has provoked since the 1960s, making it one of the most pressing non-traditional security issues in the region. It will preliminary examine the challenges of implementing ABMs to complex real-world situation like the ones into exam and which preliminary steps and theoretical considerations are necessary before the formulation of a definitive model. Finally, it will provide indications the state of the work in progress on the model created for this case-study, a few preliminary conclusions about its effectiveness, and some notes for future development.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAgent-Based Simulation of Organizational Behavior: New Frontiers of Social Science Research
EditorsDavide Secchi, Martin Neumann
Place of PublicationSwitzerland
PublisherSpringer Verlag
ISBN (Print)978-3-319-18153-0, 978-3-319-18152-3
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Bibliographical note

The full text is not available on the repository


  • Water security
  • River management
  • Shared resources
  • Non-traditional security
  • Mekong River


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