Posts for the Topic simulation modeling

The impact of climate change on winter ski tourism in the Pyrenees

We all know that climate change is having a major impact on weather patterns around the globe. One industry that is particularly exposed to these changes is the ski industry. Though large mountain/high elevation ski resorts may remain insulated from the impacts of shorter ski seasons and more erratic weather, those ski resorts at low altitude are particularly vulnerable to a changing climate. As a mid-latitude, lower elevation (comparatively) ski region, the Pyrenees are one area where the impacts of a changing climate are pronounced.

Why technology adoption constraint research is important

A chapter from my dissertation has been recently published in Environment and Planning B: Planning and Design. This paper, titled “Negotiating constraints to the adoption of agent-based modeling in tourism planning” presents material from a series of interviews that I conducted with tourism planners in Nova Scotia.

The desire for a simple model, made with simple tools

The most popular post (by far) on this blog is one where I present a simple version of Butler’s Tourism Area Lifecycle (TALC), done up in Excel: A Simple Tourism Model with Excel

Tourism chapter published in Planning Support Systems volume

I’m pleased to announce that a chapter describing the development of TourSim, including a scenario on shifting tourist port of entry and identification of adoption constraints, is in the final stages of preparation for publication. This chapter is part of a new book “Planning Support Systems Best Practice and New Methods” published by Springer and edited by Stan Geertman and John Stillwell.

New data sources and experimental options

I’ve made some major alterations to TourSim, both in the data that it relies on, and the types of experimentation it supports. I’m thinking that this is going to make TourSim much more usable for tourism planning, and begins to incorporate many of the ideas of complexity science (such as adaptation) into TourSim.

A simple tourism model with Excel

While there is quite a bit of interest in several fields in agent-based models (ABMs) as an approach to studying issues such as resilience, and thresholds, their complexity and technical nature is a significant barrier to their use. I’ve had a number of discussions with McGill professor Dr. Garry Peterson about alternate modeling approaches. One technology that he uses in both classes and in his publications is a simple Excel spreadsheet.

Adaptative destination model

For quite a while now I’ve been trying to expand the types of adaptive behaviour included in TourSim. Currently the tourists display a type of adaptive behaviour, as they move to destinations that satisfy their preferences. In the Baddeck Hotel Development model, tourists would adapt to the development of a new hotel, as more tourists visited Baddeck because of this new type of accommodation.

Baddeck Hotel Development results

A bar graph of the effects of hotel development at Baddeck.

I’ve been putting together some sample results using the Baddeck Hotel Development scenario. I ran the model with the default range of accommodations, and then re-ran it with the “Add Hotel at Baddeck” button selected. You can experiment with this same scenario under the Tourism Scenarios tab. Below I’ve added a chart that shows the percentage change in tourist visitation per day (blue bar) and percentage change in income per day (green bar) at select destinations. This shows the difference between the base scenario and the add hotel scenario.

Big improvements!

I’ve been hard at work adding more realistic element to TourSim. Some of the highlights include:

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