MERCURY: an ABM of tableware trade in the Roman East 1.0.0

The Market Economy and Roman Ceramics Redistribution model (MERCURY, after the Roman god of commerce) is an agent-based network model. It represents the structure of social networks between traders that act as the channels for the flow of commercial information and goods. When the model is initialised a social network is created between traders, who are distributed among sites. Four of these sites are production centres of four different tablewares, and traders located at these sites obtain a number of items of this locally produced ware in each turn. At each time step traders will determine the local demand for tableware they want to satisfy, and will estimate the price they believe an item of tableware is worth based on their knowledge of the supply and demand of the traders they are connected to. Every item of tableware is then put up for sale, and pairs of traders who are connected in the network can buy or sell an item. When an item is successfully traded, the buyer will decide to either sell it to a local consumer to lower the demand (in which case the item is taken out of the trade system and is deposited at that site), or to store it for redistribution in the following turn in case this promises a higher profit. Over time, this model therefore gives rise to distributions of four tablewares.
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