Many problems in social science and public health that we are interested in studying involve high complexity. Traditional statistical models are often not suitable to consider the interdependence between system components and the link between the behaviour of individuals and the macro-level structure and outcomes. System dynamics and agent-based modelling are two simulation methods that offer ways to consider these.
In this workshop we want to familiarise you with these two methods. We will give a brief introduction to both approaches and compare them using examples from empirical research in public health and social sciences. Through group discussions and short exercises, we will try to connect them to your own research questions and exchange ideas on how they could be implemented.
The aim of this workshop is to provide an overview of these two methods and how they could potentially benefit your research design. By the end of the session, you will have an understanding of types of questions that these methods can help answer. No practical coding lessons will be given, though we can point you to further resources to get started. Thus, no prior knowledge of coding languages or specific software is required.
The workshop will take place online on Wednesday 4 May 2022 from 09:30 to 12:00 (including breaks). The session will include brief presentations on the methods, group discussions and interactive activities. We will encourage participants to share how the methods may or may not be useful for their research during the session.
The event is open to any student interested in complexity/systems approaches. This workshop serves as a theoretical introduction and thus no prior coding skills are required. We consider it particularly suitable for students in the advanced quantitative methods (AQM) pathway who are not already familiar with these methods.