The book focusses on questions of individual and collective action, the emergence and dynamics of social norms and the feedback between individual behaviour and social phenomena. It discusses traditional modelling approaches to social norms and shows the usefulness of agent-based modelling for the study of these micro-macro interactions. Existing agent-based models of social norms are discussed and it is shown that so far too much priority has been given to parsimonious models and questions of the emergence of norms, with many aspects of social norms, such as norm-change, not being modelled. Juvenile delinquency, group radicalisation and moral decision making are used as case studies for agent-based models of collective action extending existing models by providing an embedding into social networks, social influence via argumentation and a causal action theory of moral decision making. The major contribution of the book is to highlight the multifaceted nature of the dynamics of social norms, consisting not only of emergence, and the importance of embedding of agent-based models into existing theory.
Corinna Elsenbroich is a Research Fellow in Sociology at the University of Surrey. Her research background is in philosophy of science and computer science. Her research interests are the methodology of simulation in the social sciences and the interrelations between reasoning, decision making and action which will here be applied to the theory of crime and morality.
Nigel Gilbert is Professor of Sociology at the University of Surrey. He is the author or editor of some 18 books and numerous papers. His main interests are in the application of agent-basedmodels to a wide range of social and ecological problem areas, and the methodology of computational social science.