Integrating scientific modeling and supporting dynamic hazard management with a GeoAgent-based representation of human-environment interactions: A drought example in Central Pennsylvania, USA


Recent natural disasters indicate that modern technologies for environmental monitoring, modeling, and forecasting are not well integrated with cross-level social responses in many hazard-management systems. This research addresses this problem through a Java-based multi-agent prototype system, GeoAgent-based Knowledge System (GeoAgentKS). This system allows: (1) computer representation of institutional regulations and behavioral rules used by multiple social institutions and individuals in cross-level human-environment interactions, (2) integration of this representation with scientific modeling of dynamic hazard development, and (3) application of automated reasoning that suggests to users the appropriate actions for supporting cooperative social responses. This paper demonstrates the software architecture of GeoAgentKS and presents such an integrated approach by modeling the drought-management processes in Central Pennsylvania, USA. The results show that it is possible to use GeoAgentKS to represent multilevel human-environment interactions and to use those interactions as input to decision making in hazard management.

DOI: 10.1016/j.envsoft.2009.03.010

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