Coupling general physical environmental process models with specific question-driven ecological simulation models Academic Article uri icon


  • 2019 Elsevier B.V. The mechanistic basis for problem-specific, question-driven ecological simulation models often includes general physical phenomena. Although linking general physical environmental process models with custom-written spatially-explicit ecological models appears conceptually straightforward, practical implementation of such structures is often problematic for ecological modellers and may require specific software engineering knowledge. We describe a general coupling framework that introduces an intermediate layer between the two types of models. We used a popular programming language (NetLogo) to implement a spatially-explicit simulation model for insect population growth and migration, and a commonly-used complex atmospheric dispersion model (HYSPLIT) to project air particle (here insect pest) transport, dispersion and deposition. We developed an algorithm that facilitates an ongoing dialogue between these two models. The dialogue takes place along a temporal scale with frequency and duration constrained only by the study objective. Our approach should be readily adaptable to analogous problems.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 0.5

author list (cited authors)

  • Koralewski, T. E., Westbrook, J. K., Grant, W. E., & Wang, H.

citation count

  • 11

complete list of authors

  • Koralewski, Tomasz E||Westbrook, John K||Grant, William E||Wang, Hsiao-Hsuan

publication date

  • August 2019