Advancing simulation experimentation capabilities with runtime interventions

Joon Seok Kim, Hamdi Kavak, Umar Manzoor, Andreas Züfle

Research output: Chapter in Book/Published conference outputConference publication


sExperimentation is a critical capability of simulations that allows one to test different scenarios safely and cost-effectively. In particular, agent-based simulations have been used in experimenting with different policy options to aid decision makers. Highly utilized experimentation methods such as parameter sweeping aim to explore the relationship between the initial parameter values (i.e., input) and simulation results (i.e., outputs). Experimentation, which involves changes of simulation states on-the-fly, is often conducted adhoc and entails manual code adjustments which are time consuming and error-prone. In this paper, we present a framework that facilitates intervening in a running simulation to change simulation states in a semi-automated manner so that a simulation user can explore alternative worlds. In our framework, such an intervention is implemented using an injection mechanism. The framework allows the user to weigh different policy options rapidly with minimal effort. We illustrate its use in an urban agent-based model.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSimulation Series
ISBN (Electronic)9781510892521, 9781510892538, 9781510892545, 9781510892552, 9781510892569
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jun 2019
Event2019 Annual Simulation Symposium, ANSS 2019, Part of the 2019 Spring Simulation Multi-Conference, SpringSim 2019 - Tucson, United States
Duration: 29 Apr 20192 May 2019

Publication series

NameSimulation Series
ISSN (Print)0735-9276


Conference2019 Annual Simulation Symposium, ANSS 2019, Part of the 2019 Spring Simulation Multi-Conference, SpringSim 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited States

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This project is sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) under cooperative agreement No.HR00111820005. The content of the information does not necessarily reflect the position or the policy of the Government, and no official endorsement should be inferred.


  • Checkpoint
  • Experimentation
  • Injection
  • Intervention
  • What-if analysis


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