Self-organization and agent-based modeling

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1 Citation (Scopus)


This presidential lecture argues that agent-based modeling contributes to the development of theories of social change. Although social change has been an attractive topic to many sociologists, they have mainly focused on the analysis of social change at the macro level with little attention to the micro-macro linkage. Takatoshi Imada's theory of self-organization, as an exceptional case, clearly studies the linkage, but even his theory does not provide a clear analysis of the transition from the micro to the macro level. Agent-based modeling, I would argue, clearly analyzes the transition. However, we need to clarify the concept of role when applying the method to the study of structural change, which has been the main theme in theories of social change. Recently, a few studies of formalizing the concept of role have been published, so agent-based modeling will contribute to the development of theories of social change by combining its ideas and the studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalSociological Theory and Methods
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Oct 9


  • Agent-based modeling
  • Role
  • Self-organization
  • Theories of social change

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science


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