Journal of Evolutionary Economics

, Volume 29, Issue 1, pp 467–538 | Cite as

Macroeconomics with heterogeneous agent models: fostering transparency, reproducibility and replication

  • Herbert DawidEmail author
  • Philipp Harting
  • Sander van der Hoog
  • Michael Neugart
Regular Article


This paper provides a detailed description of the Eurace@Unibi model, which has been developed as a versatile tool for macroeconomic analysis and policy experiments. The model explicitly incorporates the decentralized interaction of heterogeneous agents across different sectors and regions. The modeling of individual behavior is based on heuristics with empirical microfoundations. Although Eurace@Unibi has been applied successfully to different policy domains, the complexity of the structure of the model, which is similar to other agent-based macroeconomic models, makes it hard to communicate to readers the exact working of the model and enable them to check the robustness of obtained results. This paper addresses these challenges by describing the details of all decision rules, interaction protocols and balance sheet structures used in the model. Furthermore, we discuss the use of a virtual appliance as a tool allowing third parties to reproduce the simulation results and to replicate the model. The paper illustrates the potential use of the virtual appliance by providing some sensitivity analyses of the simulation output carried out using this tool.


Agent-based macroeconomics Replication Reproduction Eurace@Unibi 

JEL Classification

C63 E17 



The authors gratefully acknowledge the substantial contributions of Simon Gemkow to the development and implementation of the Eurace@Unibi model and the associated R-scripts and of Gregor Böhl to the development and implementation of the ETACE Virtual Appliance. The paper has profited from helpful comments from two anonymous referees.

Funding Information

This research has been supported by the European Union Horizon 2020 grant No. 649186 - Project ISIGrowth.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interests

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Chair for Economic Theory and Computational Economics (ETACE), Department of Business Administration and Economics and Center for Mathematical EconomicsBielefeld University, Universitaetsstr. 25BielefeldGermany
  2. 2.Chair for Economic Theory and Computational Economics (ETACE), Department of Business Administration and EconomicsBielefeld University, Universitaetsstr. 25DarmstadtGermany
  3. 3.Department of Law and EconomicsTechnische Universität DarmstadtDarmstadtGermany

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