An agent-based evacuation model with social contagion mechanisms and cultural factors

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Abstract

A fire incident at a transport hub can cost many lives. To save lives, effective crisis management and prevention measures need to be taken. In this project, the effect of cultural factors in managing and preventing emergencies in public transport systems is analysed. An agent–based model of an evacuating crowd was created. Socio-cultural factors that were modelled are: familiarity with environment, response time and social contagion of fear and beliefs about the situation. Simulation results show that (1) familiarity and social contagion decrease evacuation time, while increasing the number of falls; (2) crowd density and social contagion increase evacuation time and falls. All three factors show different effects on the response time. This model will be used by transport operators to estimate the effect of these socio-cultural factors and prepare for emergencies.

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van der Wal, C. N., Formolo, D., & Bosse, T. (2017). An agent-based evacuation model with social contagion mechanisms and cultural factors. In Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics) (Vol. 10350 LNCS, pp. 620–627). Springer Verlag. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-60042-0_68

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