Dr Simon Angus (Senior Lecturer, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia)
Looking for more about Simon?
Get to know Simon's research and approach to Science via a recent interview with the Santa Fe Institute.
Will Poverty Survive the Age of Big Data?
Coming to Melbourne? Welcome to Melbourne!
Coordinator, Dept. of Economics Honours Program, go here for information, FAQs, and application details.
Chair, Dept. of Economics Innovations and Quality in Education Group.
Promoting Excellent Mentor, providing feedback and mentoring to aspiring VC and ALTC teaching awardees.
Role @City on a Hill (voluntary, part time)
Pastor (Strategy & Analysis)
Simon's research interests span physical and social sciences, unified by the Science of Complexity. In Economics, his thematic interest is in Technology, Innovation, Evolutionary Game Theory, and Economic Networks:
- Complexity Science
Economics of Technology & Innovation
Evolutionary Game Theory & Computation
Computational Economics & Systems Biology
- Artificial life
Read more about Simon's approach to Science, Complexity and Economics in this Q&A for the Santa Fe Institute's Alumni program.
Publishing in ABM Journals Resource:
- A listing (with an Australian "ERA" quality approach) to possible outlets that will publish ABM style papers:
A recent talk
auDA Foundation Grant PhD grant (K. Ackermann): A new, high spatial-resolution, dataset on Internet use in Australia ($23k), Jan 2014. details
Faculty Pilot Research Grant: How was Australian Economic Behaviour affected by the Global Financial Crisis? Evidence from online search data ($11,000), Jan 2013.
Dept. Economics Grant: Mapping the industrial revolution ($9,600), Jan 2012.
- ITL Innovations Grant: "Identifying Critical Activators in Online Discussion Forums" ($4,000), April 2011.
Matt Berryman (U.SA, Defense and Systems Institute): UniSA ARC Discovery Project Grant Development Scheme (for DP11), 'Modelling the economics of conducting insurgencies and terrorist campaigns'
Faculty Pilot Research Grant (2009) (with Brett Parris): An integrated climate-economy agent-based model of Bangladesh for the next 100 years
Monash Europe Travel Grant (2008-2009): to work with Dr Monika Piotrowska (Warsaw) on computational modelling of avascular tumours (see publications)
Faculty Educational Innovation Grant (2008-2009): to establish EconomicsNow! .
Faculty New Staff Grant (2008-2009)
Selected Publications & Presentations
Angus, S.D. & Hassani Mahmooei, B. (2015) '"Anarchy" Reigns: A Quantitative Analysis of Agent-Based Modelling Publication Practices in JASSS, 2001-2012' Journal of Artificial Societies & Social Simulation, 2015:7:5 full paper.
Angus, S.D. and Piotrowska, M.J. (2014) 'A Matter of Timing: Identifying Significant Multi-Dose Radiotherapy Improvements by Numerical Simulation and Genetic Algorithm Search.' PLoS ONE 9(12): e114098. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0114098 Full Paper. (Accompanying Website, and on FigShare.com here) (ERA2010:A SJR2013:1.72,Q1)
Ackermann, K. and Angus, S.D., 'A Resource Efficient Big Data Analysis Method for the Social Sciences: The Case of Global IP Activity', 2014 International Conference on Computational Science, published in Procedia Computer Science, 29:2360-2369 (2014). citation/abstract. (ERA2010:A SJR2013:0.28)
Angus, S.D., 'Did recent world record marathon runners employ 'optimal' pacing strategies?', Journal of Sports Sciences, 32(1):31-45 (2014). published online citation/abstract. (ERA2010:B SJR2013:1.31,Q1) Referred to in Dr Phil Maffetone's online study on the MAF test and marathon prediction
Angus, S.D. and Newnham, A., 'The Bit-Economy: An artificial model of specialisation and open-ended technology discovery', Complexity, 18(5):57-67 (2013). abstract/citation Paper website (documented code available). (ERA2010:B SJR2013:0.49,Q1)
Angus, S.D. and Piotrowska, M.J. 'A numerical model of EMT6/Ro spheroid dynamics under irradiation: calibration & estimation of the underlying irradiation-induced cell survival probability', Journal of Theoretical Biology, 320:23–32, (2013). (citation/abstract). (ERA2010:A* SJR2013:1.05,Q1)
Angus, S.D. and Waterhouse, B.J., 'Pacing Strategy from High Frequency Field Data: more evidence for neural regulation?', Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 43(12):2405–2411 (2011). citiation/abstract (ERA2010:A* SJR2013:2.25,Q1) [citations*: 7]
Angus, S.D. and Piotrowska, M.J.; 'The onset of necrosis in a 3D cellular automaton model of EMT6 Multi-cellular spheroids', Applicationes Mathematicae 37(1):69-88 (2010). citation/abstract (ERA2010:C)
Piotrowska, M.J. and Angus, S.D.; 'A quantitative cellular automaton model of in vitro multicellular spheroid tumour growth', Journal of Theoretical Biology, 258:165-178 (2009) doi:citation/abstract (ERA2010:A* SJR2013:1.05,Q1) 
Angus, S.D and Watson, J., 'Does regular online testing enhance student learning? Evidence from a large first-year quantitative course', British Journal of Educational Technology (BJET) 40(2):255-272 (2009). citation/abstract (ERA2010:A SJR2013:1.52,Q1)  Read John Kleeman's post on this article at questionmark.com
Lord, H.T., Quinn, J.F., Angus, S.D., Whittaker, M.R. and Davis, T.P.; `Microgel Stars via Reversible Addition Fragmentation Chain Transfer Polymerization -- A Facile Route to Macroporous Membranes, Honeycomb Patterned Thin Films and Inverse Opal Substrates', Journal of Materials Chemistry, 13 (2003), 2819--2824. Free PDF Download (ERA2010:A SJR2013:2.4,Q1) 
Angus, S.D. and Davis, T.P.; `Polymer Surface Design and Infomatics: Facile Microscopy/Image Analysis Techniques for Self-Organizing Microporous Polymer Film Characterization', Langmuir, 18 (2002), 9547--9553. citation/abstract (ERA2010:A* SJR2013:2.01,Q1) 
* Citations updated: Nov 2014 via Scopus.
Berryman, M.J. and Angus, S.D.; 'Tutorials on Agent-based modelling with NetLogo and Network Analysis with Pajek', Chapter 10 in R.L. Dewar & F. Detering (Eds), Complex Physical, Biophysical & Econophysical Systems, World Scientific Reviews (Published March 2010). (ISBN: 978-981-4277-31-0) Order/view here
Angus, S.D.; 'Economic Networks: Cooperation, Communication and Complexity', 2007, PhD Dissertation, UNSW). (Download, 1.8MB)
Angus, S.D., Parris, B. and Hassani-M, B., 'Climate change impacts and adaptation in Bangladesh: an agent-based approach', Proceedings of the 18th IMACS World Congress, MODSIM09, p.207, 13-17 July, 2009. Free PDF Download 
Angus, S.D. and Piotrowska, M. J., 'Towards a 3D Cellular Automaton Model of Multi-Cellular Spheroids', paper accepted to the XIV National Conference Application of Mathematics to Biology and Medicine, Leszno, Poland 17-21 Sept. 2008.
Angus, S.D., Speaking Across the Void World-views, presuppositions and why we must, chapter 2 in Disbelieving Disbelief: How the New Atheists make atheism unbelievable edited by Phillip Brown, Mosaic Resources, Nov 2012.
Other working papers
Cheng, W. and Angus, S.D., 2012. "The Cantillon Effect of Money Injection through Deficit Spending," Monash Economics Working Papers 12-12, Monash University, Department of Economics. abstract/citation
Angus, S.D. and Masson, V. 2010. "The Effects of Information and Interactions on Contagion Processes," School of Economics Working Papers 2010-12, University of Adelaide, School of Economics. abstract/citation
Masson, V. and Angus, S.D., 2009. "What Matters Most: Information or Interaction? The Importance of Behavioral Rules on Network Effects for Contagion Processes," School of Economics Working Papers 2009-35, University of Adelaide, School of Economics. abstract/citation
Angus, S.D.; 'The Power of Integration: Assessing a Recent Best-Practice Method for Large-Class Instructional Materials Generation & Presentation' (February 12, 2008). Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1106362. SSRN Abstract/Download page
Submitted (in review)
(with Behrooz Hassani (Monash U)) 'A review of agent-based modelling publication practices'.
(with Behrooz Hassani (Monash U)) 'Explaining human interest'.
Workshop and Seminar Organisation
Instructor, organiser of the Agent-based and network modelling workshop (with Matt Berryman) at the ANU Complex Physical, Biophysical and Econophysical Systems Summer (ANU, 8-19 Dec, 2008) link
Organising committee, Complex Connections at Kioloa(Kioloa Campus, ANU, 11-14 Nov, 2008) an COSNet ECR (and other) research collaboration workshop link
Founding member (with David Goldbaum and Valentyn Panchenko) of the Sydney Agents Agent-based modelling seminar series (UNSW, UTS, founded June, 2007) link
Instructor, organiser of computing tutorials, COSNet & MASCOS Complex Systems: Beyond the Metaphor workshop (UNSW, Feb, 2007) link
Selected Presentations given at Conferences, Workshops & Seminars
Angus, S.D. * Newton, J., 'Shared Intentions and the Advance of Cumulative Culture in Hunter-gathers', BET Workshop, Monash University, 13 Mar 2015.
Angus, S.D., Ackermann, K., Raschky, P., 'Drinking from the fire-hydrant: global online/offline internet activity, four times an hour', ARC Centre of Excellence for Maths and Statistics Frontiers Big Data Workshop, QUT, 23 Feb 2015. Watch the talk on YouTube
(.pdf) Angus, S.D., & Piotrowska, M., 'Using high fidelity numerical simulation & GA search to find better radiation therapies for cancer', SimVic (Simulation Victoria) meeting, RMIT Intelligent Systems lab, 5 Sep 2014.
Angus, S.D., 'Graphs in Economics -- a sampler', Discrete & Game Theory group, Monash University, 16 Dec 2013.
Angus, S.D and Newnham, A., 'Mapping the Industrial Revolution: A 'big-data' approach to inventions, innovation & technology in Europe & the US: 1750-1950', RMIT Economics Research Seminar, 4 Oct 2013.
Angus, S.D. & Hassani, B., 'Learning Culture from Google Trends', FC Pye Laboratory Seminar, CSIRO Black Mountain, Canberra, 8 Aug 2013.
Angus, S.D., & Newnham, A., 'The Bit-Economy: an artiﬁcial model of specialisation and open-ended technology growth', FC Pye Laboratory Seminar, CSIRO Black Mountain, Canberra, 18 July 2013.
Angus, S. and Newnham, A., 'Mapping the Industrial Revolution: A 'big-data' approach to inventions, innovation & technology in Europe & the US: 1750-1950', U Sydney Research Seminar, 13 Sep 2012.
(.pdf.zip) Angus, S., and Newnham, A., Everyone needs a map: educational mapping of units, disciplines, faculties and universities, Department of Economics Teaching Week 2011 Research Seminar, 21 September, 2011.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D., Parris, B., and Hassani, M, 'Embracing Complexity in Economics Education: Experiences from a new unit in complex adaptive systems and agent-based modelling', Australian Conference of Economists, ANU, 13 July 2011.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D., & Newnham, A., 'The Bit-Economy: an artiﬁcial model of specialisation and open-ended technology growth', Sydney Agents seminar, UNSW, 26 May 2011.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D., 'Why is economics not an evolutionary science?', Department of Economics Wednesday Research Seminar, 6 October 2010.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D., Parris, B., Hassani, B.M, 'Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation in Bangladesh', 18th World IMACS Congress and MODSIM09 International Congress on Modelling and Simulation, Cairns, Australia, 13–17 July 2009.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D., & Piotrowska, P.J., 'Challenges and Opportunities for Computational Oncology in Cellular Automata', Mathematical and Computational Approaches in Biology and Medicine, University of Warsaw, 15-16 June 2009, Warsaw, Poland.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D.; 'Endogenous Cooperation Networks', invited seminars at University of Sydney (2 APril), and University of Adelaide (3 April) Departments of Economics.
(.pdf)Angus, S.D.; 'Learning to communicate: Communication networks and inductive reasoning', presented at the Behavioural Economics Workshop, Monash University, June 2008.
(.pdf) Watson, J. and Angus, S.D.; 'Does regular online testing enhance student learning? Evidence from a large first-year quantitative course', presented at the 2008 forum on the Quantitative Analysis of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education in Business, Economics and Commerce, Feb 2008, Melbourne University, Australia.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D.; 'Genotype or Phenotype? The conflation of two concepts in evolutionary game theory', presented at the Sydney Agents seminar series (Oct 2007), and the Theory Workshop, School of Economics, UNSW.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D.; 'Freedom from Powerpoint: An introduction to creating clear, structured, & efficient presentations & notes for conferences and lectures with LaTeX and Beamer', presented at the Faculty Seminar Series, FCE, UNSW, Oct 2006, UNSW, Sydney, Australia. (webpage: InSilico/PresentationsAlaLatex)
(.pdf) Angus, S.D.; `Endogenous Communication Networks with Boundedly Rational Agents', presented at the Econometric Society Australasian Meeting, July 2006, Alice Springs, Australia.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D.; `Cooperation Networks: Endogeneity and Complexity', presented at the 6th International Conference on Complexity Science, June 2006, Boston, MA, USA; and at Network Theory Working Group, meeting III, June 2006, Canberra, Australia.
(.pdf) Angus, S.D.; `Endogenous Cooperation Networks: a Complex Systems Approach', presented at Bonzenfries Colloqium (for young researchers) within Econophysics Colloqium 2005, ANU, Canberra, Australia.
Spoke at the Dept. of Economics Prize Night 2011 as the invited speaker, on the topic, 'The Pretence of Knowledge (after Hayek)'. Text of the speech is here.
Gave a seminar to the Monash University BUSECO 'Peers, Ambassadors and Leaders (PAL)' program seminar series: 'Picking the lowest fruit in our climate change response: solar cells for everyone?', 26 Oct 2011. (.pdf slides)
Wrote a letter to The Age on 'Closing the Gap' between indigenous and non-indigenous health statistics, published 3 Feb, 2009.
Was interviewed on ABC Local Radio's (Sydney) ''Sunday nights with James O'Loughlin'' on the topic, 'Are there solutions to the Global Financial Crisis and the Global Environment Crisis' (Jame's description of the ills of climate change), 2009.
Was interviewed for 'Snapshots', a podcast program developed by Environment and Sustainability Masters students at Monash University. The interview is available as a podcast here: http://radio.monash.edu/podcast/snapshots.
Monash Vice-Chancellor's Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning (2010) VC-AwardStatement2010 (.pdf)
Monash Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award (2009) Dean-AwardStatement2009 (.pdf)
Australian School of Business (Faculty of BusEco at UNSW) Teaching Innovation Awards (2008) (jointly, with Judith Watson)
Research Presentation Skills Workshop
Simon's advice on putting together teaching and learning grants:
Simon was interviewed for case-studies in collaborative teaching:
- Dean's Commendation for Outstanding Teaching (2010), Faculty of Business and Economics, Monash University.
Talks on Teaching and Learning
(.pdf.zip) Angus, S., "Blended Learning: a player's perspective", Department of Accounting and Finance Learning and Teaching Forum, 7 Dec 2011.
(.pdf.zip) Angus, S., and Newnham, A., Everyone needs a map: educational mapping of units, disciplines, faculties and universities, Department of Economics Teaching Week 2011 Research Seminar, 21 September, 2011.
(.pdf) Angus, S., Clouding around with an iPad, '2011 Accounting and Finance Cool Tools for Teaching and Learning', 10 Feb 2011, Caulfield Campus, Monash University).
(.pdf) Angus, S., Would the useful iPad Lecturing App please stand up?: Tablet PCs, iPads and other adventures at the bleeding edge, 'Australasian Tablets in Education Conference', 10 Dec 2010, Caulfield Campus, Monash University).
(.pdf) Angus, S., Teaching awards: a player's perspective, 'Business Education Research Network', 27 October 2010 (Innovative learning space, Monash, Caulfield)
(.pdf) Angus, S., Tablets in Economics: use and experiences, 'Monash Tablets in Education' Forum, 26 May 2010 (Monash Club, Clayton).
(.pdf) Angus, S., Technology and Innovations for Teaching Large Classes, Department of Economics -- 'Effective Teaching' Forum, 1 May 2009 Dept. Economics, Caulfield Campus.
I have been fortunate to work with some outstanding students, please have a read of their work below. NB: If you would like to contact the author, or discuss the work, please email Simon (address at top of the page).
Simon's Honours Honour Role:
- Penelope Mealy, 2012: Capturing realistic dynamics within an artificial model of technological progress: do neoclassical pricing assumptions matter?
Andrew Newnham, 2011 (Honours Research Project Prize 2011): The Bit-Economy: an artificial model of specialisation & open-ended technology discovery abstract/citation Read the paper published in ''Complexity'' Journal
(.pdf) Rochwerger, J. (2010) How should government investments be made to improve the socio-economic status of remote Indigenous communities in Australia? Should the Australian Government consider a change with its existing policy?, Honours Thesis submitted October 2010, Department of Economics, Monash University.
(.pdf) Dutta, R. (2010) Analysing the Effectiveness of Service Providers in the Homelessness Sector, Honours Thesis submitted October 2010, Department of Economics, Monash University. (jointly supervised with Rebecca Valenzuela (<Rebecca DOT Valenzuela AT buseco DOT monash DOT edu DOT au>)
Simon's current PhD students:
- Klaus Ackermann (main): 'The Economics of Technology' (see Grants, and publications above).
- Andrew Reilley (associate, ANU): 'The emergence of political ideation' (ANU).
Thinking of doing a PhD?
- I'm happy to hear from you. Please email me. Though you may want to read:
Current Teaching Responsibilities
A new unit (introduced S1, 2009) that deals with long-run growth, the determinants of poverty, poverty alleviation and the impact of climate change on developed and developing countries. It has no pre-requisites, so it is perfect for a non-BusEco student who is keen to get stuck into the big Economics issues shaping our times.
A new unit (introduced S2, 2010) that builds on the shorter six-week offering of ECC3855 (see below), teaching a Complex Systems perspective on the economy together with an agent-based modelling toolset. We deal head-on with the difficult modelling challenges of modern economics: the dual feedbacks from the 'macro' to the 'micro' and from the 'micro' to the 'macro'. The specific application example will be how to handle the economics of climate change, migration, conflict and growth.
(S1, 2008) ECC5650: Advanced Micro Theory (Handbook)
- Post-graduate level micro -- proofs and propositions with sets.
A critical look at the major organisational and ideological economic arrangements of the 20th C. including Stalinist and Leninist Russia, the Scandanavian welfare state, Japan's post-war boom, and of course, the contemporary market economy. For a taste, see The Commanding Heights documentary online.
A primer in complex systems and agent-based modelling, run for 6 weeks in the pre-honours unit. See the excellent student projects here: ECC3855 Project Exhibit
- ECON1201: Quantitative Methods A
- An introductory maths unit focussing on Financial maths, Probability primer, Linear algebra (with an emphasis on using software), Linear programming, Calculus (up to constrained optimization in several variables).
With Judith Watson, we undertook a comprehensive review of 'QMA' including content, assessment and lecture delivery, some sampel fruit from this review process are given here:
The updated Course Outline (.pdf)]
The corresponding Example Slides (.pdf)
- ECONX: Game Theory and Business Strategy
- A Game Theory primer including: Normal and Extensive form games; Nash, SPNE solution concepts; Mixed strategies and solutions; Evolutionary games; Bargaining; and Duopoly solutions.
What's Game Theory? Try a primer article written for ECHO, the UNSW FCE students' society journal: Download (.pdf)
Unit and Teaching Evaluation scores
In the interests of full disclosure, I'm publishing here my teaching evaluations. The unit evaluations are available to students and staff of Monash, but the teaching evaluations (which are voluntary) are not. However, I feel it is good practice to allow students to know what they are getting. Like any teacher, I have some weaknesses in teaching and some strengths. I care a lot about my teaching, and aim to improve. Note: Since there's now a lot of these links, I've summarised the Unit Evaluations across the years I've been at Monash for simplicity. The x-axis shows the questions that students are asked. The y-axis shows the median students give me, weighted by response rate across the various units and cohorts for a given year. I include the Faculty (BusEco) avg. median for comparison. (
Note: Since there's now a lot of these links, I've summarised the Unit Evaluations across the years I've been at Monash for simplicity. The x-axis shows the questions that students are asked. The y-axis shows the median students give me, weighted by response rate across the various units and cohorts for a given year. I include the Faculty (BusEco) avg. median for comparison.
(Note on 2014: I introduced a completely new feedback and assessment tool to the ECC2800/APG4429 unit in S1 (a peer-review module for the pre- and major- essay assignments). Since little else was altered, I attribute the general drop in responses to this major change. The first iteration of any major innovation has teething problems! I'm thankful to the students of 2014 who helped me see what worked and didn't. I hope to improve the approach for 2015 and beyond.)
Monash University (2008-- )
ECC2800 (Prosperity, Poverty & Sustainability) (also coded ENV4060 and ENV5060 (2010), and APG4429 and APG5429 (2011-))
ECC3860/ETC3860 (Integrated Economic Modelling)
ECC2810 (Globalisation & Economic Systems)
ECC5650 (Micreconomic Theory)
2009, S1: class-sizes too small for evaluations
2008, S1: class-sizes too small for evaluations
University of New South Wales (2006--2007)
ECON1202 (Quantitative Methods A)
2007, S1: Teaching (.pdf)
Angus, SD., 'Speaking Across the Void: World-views, presuppositions and why we must', in Brown, P. (ed), Disbelieving Disbelief: How the New Atheists make atheism unbelievable, published nov 2012 by Mosaic Resources, Melbourne Australia; book website here.
Op-ed, but didn't get published.
sangus/ZimbabweElections Zimbabwe's Elections: The spotlight's on you, Mr Rudd (May 2008)
sangus/HitchensDangerousIdeas Hitchens should reveal his own dangerous idea (Oct 2009)
sangus/CrimeRateNotTotal It's about Crime Rates, not total Number (Apr 2010)
I am part of City on a Hill -- a fantastic church that is all about knowing Jesus and making him known throughout Melbourne. Come and visit some time!
Many Roooms -- I was part of a homeless project called Many Rooms, which so far has one operational 'room', called 'The Kitchen', which runs out of the North Melbourne Community centre every Saturday, feeding a hearty meal to the homeless.
The Simeon Network -- the network to be part of on campus -- academics who are committed to knowing and sharing the one Truth that first inspired the foundation of the great 'uni-vers-ities'.