A Multi Agent Model for Reverse Perception Effect
Pp. 122-153 (32)
Nuno Trindade Magessi and Luis Antunes
One of the most intriguing and challenging problems in cognitive science is
the difference between the individuals’ perception about reality and the reality itself.
Until the last decade, the main focus has been on the behaviour of individuals and the
evidences of their biases, according to some stimulus. Now, researchers have centred
their focus on the main reasons why these biases occur. Consequently, it is important to
analyse deeply what are the consequences of these biases to society. For that purpose,
we tackle the problem by using the case study of Acquired Immune Deficiency
Syndrome (AIDS) and how people perceive it. In this article, we built a multi agent
model to understand the consequences to the society when individuals do not perceive
correctly, the reality. The obtained results reveal that the agents who perceive more
correctly the danger of HIV are the ones who have more propensities to be infected and
contaminate the rest of population. This is the opposite of what is expected from
perception demonstrating the existence of a reverse effect.
Cognitive Psychology, Health Risk Assessment, HIV dissemination,
Multi-agent Model, Risk Perception.
BioISI/ MAS/ Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal.