Agent Based Modelling and Social Inputs. A few case studies

Silvio Carta, Ian Owen

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review


This paper presents a number of recent student projects that investigate the notion of personal space and public space with through digital technologies and computational methods (Carpo 2013).
The projects are primarily based on agent-based simulations or modelling (ABM), where relevant social inputs are factored in the system (Gehl 2004).
Whilst these projects propose a new urban model for the analysis and design of public spaces, within the context of this paper we focus on the pedagogic aspects of the activities carried out by the students and teaching staff.
This paper is divided in three parts. Firstly, we discuss the relevance of some of the digital and computational urban design models to which our projects refer. We critically discuss these in relationship to the ongoing debates on future frameworks for urban design, including parametricism (Schumacher 2009), Senseable Cities (Ratti 2010) and City Information Modelling (CIM) (Beirão, Montenegro and Arrobas 2012). Secondly, we describe and comment some case studies (student projects) within the context of the discussion framed in the first part, where new ways of producing publicness are considered (Carta, Onafuye and deKock 2019). Some preliminary findings have been published in Liu, Carta and Sopeoglou (2018) and Carta, Owen, Hay, Liu and Giuffrida (2019). Finally, we reflect on the consequences that such activities have for the learning experience of our students and the ways in which our design studios have been restructured in order to underpin the contents of the projects.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2020
EventAnnual International Conference on Urban Studies and Planning - Athens, Greece
Duration: 1 Jun 20204 Jun 2020


ConferenceAnnual International Conference on Urban Studies and Planning
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