Modeling and analysis of agent-based dynamics

Alexandria Volkening (May 8, 2020)

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Agent-based dynamics appear across the natural and social world; applications include swarming and flocking, pedestrian crowd movement, and self-organization of cells during the early development of organisms. Though disparate in application, many of these emergent patterns and collective dynamics share similar features (e.g. long-range communication, noise, fluctuations in population size, and multiple types of agents) and face some of the same modeling and analysis challenges. In this talk, I will focus on the example of pigment-cell interactions during zebrafish-pattern formation to illustrate various ways of modeling agent behavior. We will discuss how agent-based models are related to other approaches (e.g., cellular automaton and continuum models) and highlight methods for analyzing cell-based dynamics using topological techniques.