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dr. W. (Wander) Jager

Associate Professor, Managing director of Groningen Center for Social Complexity Studies (GCSCS)


Wander Jager (1962) is a social scientist interested in social complex phenomena. Being inspired by the work of John Holland on chaos in the 90’s, he has since then been working and teaching on the micro-macro interactions in social systems in several domains. His PhD thesis addressed an integrated behavioural model to be used in modeling human behaviour. His scientific orientation is interdisciplinary, and his work is aimed at contributing to a societal transition towards a sustainable society. 

A key theme in his work is studying the dynamics of human behaviour in environmental contexts. As such he has been organizing special issues on the The Human Actor in Ecological-Economic (Ecological Economics - 2001) and Social Simulation in Environmental Psychology (Journal of Environmental Psychology - forthcoming). A collaboration with the Stockholm Resilience Center, UFZ, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research in Leipzig, the Institute of Forest Growth and Forest Computer Science, Technische Universitaet Dresden and the School of Sustainability, Arizona State University is developing a framework for modeling behavioural theory in environmental systems (Schlüter et al, 2016). Much of hiw work uses social simulation as a tool to explore human-environment interactions, e.g. related to issues such as innovation diffusion, land-use, littering and migration.

Brief history


Social simulation and behavioural dynamics, consumer behaviour and decision-making, sustainable behaviour.

Organisational activities

  • Managing director of the Groningen Center for Social Complexity Studies
  • Former president of the European Social Simulation Association (ESSA) (2006-2008)
  • Organiser of the Special Interest Group on Market Dynamics (ESSA)
  • Organiser of First Conference of the European Social Simulation Association Conference, September 18-21, 2003, Groningen, The Netherlands
  • Vice president of the European Social Simulation Association Conference, September 2004, Valladolid, Spain
  • Organiser of a special session on 'Psychological Theories in Agent rules' at the First Lake Arrowhead Conference on Computational Social Science: Agent-based Modelling in the Social Sciences, together with Prof. Hans-Joachim Mosler in May 2002
  • Member of the program committee for Agent-based models of market dynamics and consumer behaviour, workshop to be held at 17-18 January, 2006, at the University of Surrey, in Guildford, UK
  • Fellow of the research school "Systems, Organisations and Management"
  • Member of 'Agent Link'
  • Member of the editorial board of the Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation
  • Reviewer of a.o.:

       - National Science Foundation (US)

       - American Journal of Sociology

       - Journal of Evolutionary Economics

       - Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation

       - Guest editor of a special issue of 'Ecological Economics' (2000) on behavioural modelling in  

          ecological-economic models, in collaboration with dr. M.A. Janssen (VU);

       - Guest editor of a special issue of 'Journal of Business Research'(2007) on agent based

         modelling, in collaboration with Nigel Gilbert, Guillaume Deffunt and Iqbal Adjali.

       - Ecology and Society

  • Member of the scientific committee of:

       - Multi Agent Based Simulation - Bologna 2002

       - Multi Agent Based Simulation - Melbourne 2003

       - Second International Conference on Computer Simulation and the Social Sciences (ICCS&SS


       - 2004 Multi Agent Based Simulation (MABS) workshop (New York)

       - Artificial Economics 2005, Lille, France

       - Artificial Economics 2006, Aalborg, Denmark

       - Student contest committee World Conference on Social Simulation (2006)

  • Chair of the Faculty Council of the Faculty of Management and Organization
  • Member of the committee 'Peerdeman' (internal review of bachelors program)
  • Treasurer of the "Foundations for Scientific Symbiosis"
  • Organiser together with Eelko Huizingh of a workshop '' on e-commerce related research at the SOM research school (November 8, 2000)


  • Best student paper award for Delre, S.A., Jager, W., Janssen, M.A. (2005). Diffusion dynamics in small-world networks with heterogeneous consumers. Presenters at the North American Association for Computational Social and Organizational Science (NAACSOS) Conference 2005, University of Notre Dame, South Bend, Indiana, USA
  • Winner, with F. Amblard, of the Best Paper Award for the paper "A dynamical perspective on attitude change", presented at the North American Association Computational Social and Organizational Science Conference, 2004, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.
  • The Snijders-Kouwer-award 2000 of the Heymans Institute for Advanced Psychological Research for the best international paper by a PhD for the paper: Jager, W., Janssen, M.A., De Vries, H.J.M., De Greef, J. and Vlek, C.A.J. (2000). Behaviour in commons dilemmas: Homo Economicus and Homo Psychologicus in an ecological-economic model. Ecological Economics, Vol. 35: 357-380.
Last modified:25 June 2022 12.19 p.m.