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Modeling Factions for ‘Effects Based Operations’: Part II – Behavioral Game Theory
Departmental Papers (ESE)
  • Barry G Silverman, University of Pennsylvania
  • Gnana Bharathy, University of Pennsylvania
  • Benjamin Nye, University of Pennsylvania
  • Roy Eidelson, Asch Center for EthnoPolitical Conflict
Military, diplomatic, and intelligence analysts are increasingly interested in having a valid system of models that span the social sciences and interoperate so that one can determine the effects that may arise from alternative operations (courses of action) in different lands. Part I of this article concentrated on internal validity of the components of such a synthetic framework – a world diplomacy game as well as the agent architecture for modeling leaders and followers in different conflicts. But how valid are such model collections once they are integrated together and used out-of-sample (see Section 1)? Section 2 compares these realistic, descriptive agents to normative rational actor theory and offers equilibria insights for conflict games. Sections 3 and 4 offer two real world cases (Iraq and SE Asia) where the agent models are subjected to validity tests and an EBO experiment is then run for each case. We conclude by arguing that substantial effort on game realism, best-of-breed social science models, and agent validation efforts is essential if analytic experiments are to effectively explore conflicts and alternative ways to influence outcomes. Such efforts are likely to improve behavioral game theory as well.
Document Type
Journal Article
Date of this Version
Postprint version. Published in Computational & Mathematical Organization Theory, Volume 14, Number 2, January 2007, pages 120-155.
Publisher URL:
  • political simulation,
  • agent-based models,
  • behavioral game theory,
  • validation; policy analysis tools
Citation Information
Barry G Silverman, Gnana Bharathy, Benjamin Nye and Roy Eidelson. "Modeling Factions for ‘Effects Based Operations’: Part II – Behavioral Game Theory" (2007)
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