ZiF Logo

Computational Political Economics

Date: May 5 - 6, 2006
Organizers: Christian Martin (Hamburg) and Michael Neugart (Berlin)

The aim of the workshop is to bring together a group of researchers who apply computational models to the field of political economics. The promise that is generally attributed to computational models of economic policy making is that they may serve as a tool for positive analysis of economic policies-without the necessity to restrict modelling assumptions to what is analytically tractable. Rather, computational models are suited to incorporate a richer set of assumptions on both the institutional and the behavioural level. Computational political economics has a range of interdisciplinary facets: From economic theory, computational political economics takes the notion that agents behaviour can be explained by their preferences and the restrictions agents face while maximizing their utility. From psychology and sociology, computational political economics applies ideas that agents are influenced by group behaviour. Aggregation of preferences is achieved by voting procedures which makes it an interesting subject to political scientists. Finally results are generated by simulation which requires appropriate software tools, and, therefore, involvement of information technology and theory.
In the workshop, we want to elaborate on how far expectations fuelled by the emerging field of computational political economics have been fulfilled and on the future prospects of this field. Topics of the workshop include, for example, computational models and electoral competition, interest group influence, opinion dynamics, multi-dimensional policy spaces, multi-party competition, heterogeneous voters, electoral turn out, multi-layer policy making or the role of parties in all fields of economic policy making.

Keynote Speaker:

Lars-Erik Cederman, ETH Zürich