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Special Issue “Engineering Environments in Multi-Agent Systems”
Multiagent and Grid Systems, 15/11/2006–30/01/2007

The successful series of workshops on Environments for Multiagent Systems (E4MAS) at the International Joint Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems (AAMAS) 2004, 2005, and 2006 have put the environment
on the agenda of the multiagent system research community. Research on environments recognizes the environment as a first-class abstraction in multiagent systems. On the one hand, the environment is an essential part of any multiagent system, it is the part of the world in with which the agents interact and in which the effects of the agents will be observed and evaluated. On the other hand, the environment can also be used creatively in the design of multiagent systems. Agents can exploit the environment to share information and coordinate their behavior. A clean separation of agent and environment concerns helps to manage the huge complexity of engineering complex real-world applications.

The goal of the special issue is to give an overview of state-of-the-art research on environment engineering in multiagent systems.

topics of interest
  • Responsibilities of environments in multiagent systems
  • Modularization of environments
  • Architectural patterns and software architecture for environments
  • Aspect-oriented software development for environments 
  • Middleware support for environments, object/tuplespace-like infrastructure
  • Technologies for the practical implementation of environments 
  • Implementation frameworks 
  • Description languages and design support for environments engineering 
  • Design and implementation of:  
    • infrastructure for perception, actions and communication
    • indirect interaction through the environment, stigmergic approaches: use of marks, digital pheromones, field-based approaches, overhearing, tag-based interaction, etc.
    • role of the environment in social structures (roles, organizations, etc.) 
    • role of the environment in self-organizing systems (self-configuration, self-tuning, self-healing, etc.)
    • environment mediation, law-goverened interaction 
    • electronic institutions 
    • topology and distribution of environments
    • mobility 
    • environment engineering and practical applications
    • environment engineering for MAS simulation
hosting journal
book Multiagent and Grid Systems (MAGS)
works as
origin event for publication
page_white_acrobatSpecial Issue “Engineering Environments in Multi-Agent Systems” (special issue, 2009) — Danny Weyns, Andrea Omicini
page_white_acrobatEnvironment in Agent-Oriented Software Engineering Methodologies (article in journal, 2009) — Ambra Molesini, Andrea Omicini, Mirko Viroli