Dr. Ian S. Lustick is a senior professor of political science at the University of Pennsylvania who earned his Ph.D. at the University of California, Berkeley. An expert in Middle East politics, comparative politics, and social science methodology, Dr. Lustick is also originator of the PS-I agent-based modeling platform and a pioneer in the use of ABM for addressing otherwise insoluble problems facing social scientists, intelligence analysts, and policy makers. Dr. Lustick worked as an analyst in Middle East affairs in the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research and a consultant in Middle East policy in each of the last six administrations. Lustick Consulting has worked successfully on HSCB projects sponsored by many different agencies and departments within the intelligence and national security communities. These projects have been related to terrorism, counterinsurgency, adversary models, computation approaches to forecasting and the future of the Middle East. Learn more on his University of Pennsylvania page.

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Miguel Garces is a Senior Modeler at Lustick Consulting, beginning his work in agent-based/hybrid modeling and complexity theory at the University of Pennsylvania’s Department of Political Science. His primary responsibilities at Lustick Consulting include the development, maintenance, analysis, visualization, and deployment of virtualized country models as part of the ONR/OSD ICEWS, W-ICEWS, and V-SAFT programs. He has built upon previous government/practitioner work and academic research to expand and enrich Lustick Consulting country models by incorporating more complex political dynamics and mobilization potential. Lustick Consulting models utilize rich demographic data from regions of interest to inform initialization and dynamics in models, and he plays an integral role in data collection, storage, and use in the LC model framework.

Garces straddles the social science and computer science worlds by connecting his knowledge of programming and system design to political science and other social science theory. He has significant experience in developing processes, algorithms, and software used to build and sustain Lustick Consulting’s suite of models and modeling framework. He also has familiarity with game theory, statistical, machine-learning, genetic algorithm, network analysis, and geospatial techniques used in modeling complex adaptive systems. Garces has also authored several recently published papers detailing research and modeling of Thailand, implementing social science theory in agent-based models, and studying rare political events. He also provides conceptual and technical support on the MESA project, which has developed a theoretical framework for validating and verifying social science models in a defense context.

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