FutureDAMS Partner: Centre for Research in Social Simulation, University of Surrey

Growing concerns about climate change and natural resources depletion have motivated decision-makers and authorities to prioritise the environmental and social impacts of dams. As dams often serve multiple purposes (e.g., energy production, irrigation, water supply for industrial and domestic purposes, navigation, recreation, etc.), a nexus approach is required to understand the impacts of dams by considering the independencies of the water, energy, food and environmental systems, and the interactions between all the relevant actors in the system.

The CRESS contribution to the FutureDAMS project is to apply social simulation – combining social science thinking and methods with agent-based modelling – to understand the nexus dependencies and assess the environmental and social impacts of dams. Models will be developed based on an interdisciplinary inquiry to identify the relevant social, political and scientific aspects of resource management in case study regions. Integrating expert knowledge and stakeholder inputs to guide model development and validation will be an important aspect of our work.

Staff:

About CRESS:

The Centre for Research in Social Simulation (CRESS) is based in the Department of Sociology in the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at the University of Surrey. It is a multidisciplinary centre bringing together the social sciences, software engineering and agent-based computing to promote and support the use of social simulation in research in the human sciences. CRESS is involved in a number of research projects applying social simulation to policy in areas such as understanding value chains, environmental management, governance of science, web-based social networks, household energy use and basic research on modelling the evolution of social structure. It has a strong reputation in the methodology of and application of agent-based modelling. CRESS has extensive knowledge of computer models and modeling methods relevant to social and coupled socio-ecological-economic systems. This includes participatory modeling processes, which it has applied in a multitude of different domains and sectors.