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date: 29 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter reviews agent-based models of land use change (ABM/LUCC), a new class of computational simulation models that directly represent the decisions and interactions of economic agents at the scale of real-world land management, over a spatially explicit and dynamic virtual landscape. The chapter provides practical guidance and context for land economists who wish to understand, evaluate, and construct ABM/LUCC. It explains their structure in relation to standard economic models and demonstrates how this structure facilitates investigation of novel economic questions, especially those that involve spatial and agent-level heterogeneity in combination. It outlines the novel issues that need to be considered for ABM/LUCC, including but not limited to land market issues such as nonequilibrium dynamics, price expectations, and bounded rationality. It discusses experimental design and analysis challenges unique to ABM models, highlights complementarities between ABM/LUCC and other methods, and outlines important future research directions for this field.

Keywords: agent-based models, computational economics, land markets, land use change, bounded rationality

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