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Simulation and Similarity – Using Models to Understand the World - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Simulation and Similarity: Using Models to Understand the World

Michael Weisberg


In the 1950s John Reber convinced many Californians that the best way to solve the state’s water shortages was to dam up the San Francisco Bay. Against massive political pressure, his opponents convinced lawmakers that this would lead to disaster—not by empirical measurement alone, but by constructing a model. Simulation and Similarity explains why this was a good strategy. It provides an account of modeling and idealization in modern scientific practice, focusing on concrete, mathematical, and computational models. The book has three main themes: the nature of models, the practice of modeling ... More

Keywords: models, modeling, idealization, similarity, bay model, lotka–volterra, schelling, robustness analysis

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780199933662
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199933662.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Michael Weisberg, author
University of Pennsylvania