Co-designing of the interaction rules between agents for an equitable water allocation
13:40 - 15/03/2018
Typically, an ABM is one in which individual stakeholders are described as unique and autonomous entities that interact locally with one another and within a shared environment. The interaction can take different forms, including communication, exchange between agents, and lead to aggregated outcomes that would be unachievable for agents acting on their own. An ABM consists of three important parts: agents, the environment and rules. Agents ar
Agent based modeling concept
Typically, an ABM is one in which individual stakeholders are described as unique and autonomous entities that interact locally with one another and within a shared environment. The interaction can take different forms, including communication, exchange between agents, and lead to aggregated outcomes that would be unachievable for agents acting on their own. An ABM consists of three important parts: agents, the environment and rules. Agents are normally representing persons, but can also be representing groups as institutions. The environment is the geographical space or resources where agents act upon. The rules define how the agents interact with each other and with the environment.
ABM formulation for an irrigation district
During the crop growing season, farmers irrigate their fields as it needs (determined by the availability of water and the experience or mostly following the schedule of the irrigation operator). They withdraw water according to the allocation schemes determined at the beginning of the season. If the amount of water actually reaching the fields is less than the amount needed to irrigate the given number of fields, then water stress occurs and accumulates over the season.
Discussion with the system operation and stakeholders enabled the co-development of a following management and behavior rules for the system taking account the future direction of the irrigation system.
The rules have been carefully debated and can be presented as following:
- direct interactions or information exchanges
- A sub-district which has the water intake may allow another sub-district, whose plot is along the same watercourse, to take water at the same time.
- A sub-district reduces a water use ratio will be compensate by the water user group by a reserved ticket (the right to use water at a high demand season).
- interactions through the irrigation scheme
- Rotation in the priority use of water for group of users at the head and end of the irrigation canal.
- When a sub-district along the canal takes water, another sub-district further downstream may be able to take half the required water volume.
Setting up the interaction rules and coding the interaction between the stakeholders in the context of water resources management scheme of the irrigation district will be the next development of the study. It will be more informative that the interaction can be simulated in a water user groups meeting with the operator to explore the process and the outcomes. Nevertheless, as noted earlier when overlays the agent based interactions on top of the water resources allocation scheme of the irrigation district it will reveal the insight of the method on how a cohesion or non-cooperation behavior leading to the outcome at the top level of irrigation district in term of resources used or in term of system efficiency.
Table 1: The water allocation scenarios used in the study
Water allocation scenarios
Normal operation (business as usual)
Equally distributed between sub-districts
Distribution with weighting factor according to the location along the canal system
Distribution with direct negotiation between adjacent sub-districts
At this stage of the study, the study has been able to discuss with stakeholders and have an agreement on the simplest set of rule in which in the future study when the set of rule is coupled with the water balancing model would be able to exchange information as well as see the interaction between human interaction on top of the underlying hydro-informatics system (in this case is the dynamic water balancing information).