The Riksbanken Jubileumfond has recently granted a research grant of 4,626,000 SEK (c. 578,000 USD / 478,000 EUR) to the Research Project 'Modelling institutional dynamics in historical commons' (MIDI). This international and interdisciplinary research project is set-up by and involves IASC-members Giangiacomo Bravo (Project PI), Tine De Moor, and Amineh Ghorbani. The project builds upon research results from the Common Rules-project, led by Tine De Moor.
The MIDI project adopts an interdisciplinary perspective to contribute empirically-grounded and systematic knowledge of the mechanisms driving the process of institutional chage. Its starting point is an exceptional dataset of European commons-management institutions recently presented by an international team of historians, the leading one being involved in MIDI as well. Commons are natural or man-made resources shared among different users and needing appropriate institutional arrangements to overcome overuse and promote group-beneficial actions.
The researchers' goal is to exploit their interdisciplinary competences to (1) re-code the data-set on the basis of a systematic institutional analysis framework, (2) fully exploit its potential through the use of data mining and evolutionary analysis techniques, and (3) to embed the resulting knowledge in an agent-based model capturing the essential dynamics of institutional change. More in detail, after the coding phase techniques developed to study gene sequences will be adopted to uncover the relations between the different systems of rules and their development over time. Then these dynamics will be embedded into an agent-based model, which will allow historians and social scientists to perform virtual experiments to test alternative hypotheses about the factors that led to the development of specific institutional arrangements and to create plausible scenarios of their future development.
The project builds upon research results from the Common Rules-project, composed by the Institutions of Collective Action research team led by Tine De Moor, in cooperation with researchers Angus Winchester and José-Miguel Lana.
For more info, contact Giangiacomo Bravo, Linnaeus University, e-mail