ABMUS2021: The 6th International Workshop on Agent-Based Modelling of Urban Systems


ABMUS is a workshop where urban and geo-spatial models get together in a focused session, during the International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems (AAMAS). The ABMUS2021 workshop on Agent-Based Modelling of Urban Systems will be held on 3-4 May 2021 (specific date tbc) as part of the AAMAS2021 conference. In 2021 the conference was due to take place in London, but due to the pandemic the conference and the AMBUS workshop will be held virtually.

The central goal of this workshop is to bring together the community of researchers and practitioners who use agent-based models and multi-agent systems to understand and manage cities and urban infrastructure systems. Through the exchange of ideas and state-of-the-art within this area, we will pool together current thinking to discuss avenues of fruitful research and methodological challenges we face in building robust, realistic, and trusted models of urban systems.

Call for Papers: 'Multi-level Modelling'

We invite submissions from researchers and practitioners who use agent-based models and agent systems to understand, explore, and manage cities and urban infrastructure systems. The overarching theme for 2021 is multi-level modelling, and will also feature a special track on the use of agent-based simulation to help study mitigation strategies for Covid-19 and scenarios for a post-Covid world including behaviour change and city planning.

This year, we invite presentations that describe how researchers chose spatial and temporal scales for their modelled system, and how this links to analysis at other levels of representation and abstraction. We will discuss challenges associated with model development, data interoperability, consistent representation of space and time, as well as developments in interfaces and stakeholder engagement. Papers may include, but are not limited, to the following topics:

  • Large scale urban simulation applications
  • Spatially explicit micro-simulation modelling
  • Agent-based modelling of urban transport, land-use, housing, energy, health, etc.
  • Localized population synthesis
  • Multi-scale urban systems (temporal and spatial)
  • The impact of COVID-19 on cities and mitigation strategies analysed using agent simulation
  • Model development and co-development processes and protocols
  • Data structures for simulating urban environments
  • Connection of simulation models to social and geographical theory
  • Government and industry engagement in model development and uptake
  • Modelling, and model co-development, to provide decision support and enhance decision-making in urban systems
  • Development in model interfaces and engagement that enhance model uptake
  • Internet of Things (IoT), open data and data interoperability for modelling

The workshop recognises the importance of allowing delegates the opportunity to discuss the topics and so mixes short paper presentations with longer discussions and questions. If accepted, each presenter will be given a short time slot (max 10 minutes) to introduce their paper and/or case study, followed by 5-10 minutes in which presenters will share their views on the multi-level modelling theme. After three presentations there will be 20-30 minutes of discussion in which presenters will act as panel members in direct discussion with the ABMUS audience. In 20201 the AAMAS conference, and the AMBUS workshop, will be held virtually.

Papers should be submitted as an extended abstract (2-4 pages) through Easy Chair (details below).

For more information please contact:

Submission and important dates

How to submit a paper

Participants are invited to submit an extended abstract (2-4 pages) describing their work on one or more of the topics relevant to the workshop. Your abstract should include a title as well as all authors and affiliations. It should articulate the objectives of the paper and provide a brief but thorough description of the research related to the theme of the workshop and the expected gain by those attending the presentation. Accepted authors will be invited to submit a full paper after the workshop to be included in the post-workshop proceedings. All submissions to the workshop will be reviewed by the organising committee and program committee, with at least two independent reviews per paper.

Authors are requested to prepare their papers by following the LNCS Springer instructions, preferably using the LaTeX template provided but an MS Word template is also available.

All papers must be submitted through the workshop's EasyChair page:

Important dates

  • 23 February 5 March 2021: extended (final) deadline for abstract submissions
  • 31 March 2021: Notification of acceptance following the review process
  • 30 April 2021: Deadline for submitting camera-ready papers for inclusion in the pre-proceedings
  • 3-4 May 2020: ABMUS workshop
  • Following the workshop, invitation for full papers (see below)

In parallel to the ABMUS workshop we are organising a special issue in Computers, Environment and Urban Systems. All authors are encouraged to submit their original work for review while an extended abstract of the work can be presented at ABMUS2021. For more information about the special issue please see the CEUS special issue website


The organising committee consists of:

  • Dr Minh Le Kieu, University of Auckland
  • Dr Koen H. van Dam, Imperial College London
  • Dr Jason Thompson, University of Melbourne
  • Prof Nick Malleson, University of Leeds
  • Prof Alison Heppenstall, University of Leeds
  • Dr Jiaqi Ge, University of Leeds

The members of the scientific committee will be confirmed as soon as possible.

Proceedings and special issues

All accepted extended abstracts will be made available in the pre-proceedings. Please note that at least one author must register for the workshop in order for a paper to appear in the workshop proceedings. After the conference all presenters will be invited to submit a full paper for the ABMUS2021 proceedings to appear as a special issue with the journal Computers Environment and Urban Systems


... forthcoming ...

Previous ABMUS workshops

Previously, ABMUS2016 was held in Singapore during AAMAS2016 on the 10th of May 2016, ABMUS2017 was held in Sao Paulo during AAMAS2017 on the 8th of May 2017 and afterwards ABMUS2018 was held in Stockholm during the Federated AI Meeting (FAIM2018) which included the AAMAS2018 conference and IJCAI-ECAI (International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence and the European Conference on Artificial Intelligence). In 2019, ABMUS2019 took place at AAMAS2019 in Montreal, Canada on the 14th of May 2019. Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the 2020 workshop (which should have taken place as part of the AAMAS2020 conference in Aukland 9-13 May) was canceled.