Programming Institutional Facts in Multi-Agent Systems

  • Maiquel de Brito
  • Jomi F. Hübner
  • Rafael H. Bordini
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7756)


In multi-agent systems with separate agents, environment, and institution dimensions, the institutional state can be affected by facts originating in any of those constituent dimensions. Most current approaches model the dynamics of the institution focusing on the agents and the institution itself as the main sources of facts that produce changes in the institutional state. In this paper, we investigate also the environment as an important source of facts that change the institution. We propose thus a model and a language to specify and program the institutional dynamics as consequence of events and state changes occurring in any of the three component dimensions of the system (agent, environment, and institution). Our approach was evaluated through a case study where we compare two solutions for an application: the original design and a new one based on our proposal. We observed a simplification of the agents’ reasoning, an increase in the functions performed by the environment and the institution, and greater independence of the agents within the system. This last result is specially important in open systems where we cannot take for granted that agents will take part in the system.


institutional facts constitutive rules environment institution 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Maiquel de Brito
    • 1
  • Jomi F. Hübner
    • 1
  • Rafael H. Bordini
    • 2
  1. 1.Federal University of Santa CatarinaFlorianpolisBrazil
  2. 2.FACIN-PUCRSPorto AlegreBrazil

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