Author: Peter Corless
Date: 25 February 2009
Time: 7:07 PM Pacific Standard Time
Location: Cupertino, California
The current global crisis will require a very large, consistently-updated model of the global economy to determine the relative health and changing dynamics of geographic areas as well as markets, governments, businesses, and economic sectors.
The Global Understanding Institute has a long-term vision to building a Global Model: a simulation system of the Earth, including various natural and human systems, including present states, changes and rates of change, stochastic events, trends and probable equilibrium outcomes.
Different elements of natural and human systems will need to be put into such a global model, including human demographic, social, political and economic activities. Because of the present global economic crisis, this latter model is a critical priority.
The Global Understanding Institute would wish to see proposals for what data should comprise a relatively useful and accurate global model of economic activities.
Proposals should include reliable, technically accurate and confirmable public and private data sources, whether from markets, governments, NGOs, or analysts. A bias for the model should be in the free, public source of data. Private, proprietary data sources would be inappropriate for a public benefit educational institute, unless such data was provided at a no-cost basis, both license-free and royalty-free.
Methods to maintain the model would need to detail the relative rate of data updates (intraday, daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, annually, or at some other period basis, or done on a special irregular basis), the method to compare, confirm, and/or validate the data via other sources or statistical methods.
The model should be in an emergent state and tolerate growth of its analysis. Increasingly complex mathematics may be used over time. For instance, replacing initial simple arithmetic models with algebraic formulae, trigonometry, or calculus. Both standard and special ad hoc data importation methods should be allowed for new data entry, importation of new data feeds, new methods of analysis, and generally encourage the system to watch for emerging trends and increasingly sophisticated systems of analysis as the model grows and matures.
Data tracked by the system should also enable rating systems for reliability or confidence of data. For instance, a national government or U.N. source backed by strong research and clear methodology may have a higher data reliability than a subjective consumer or business confidence survey conducted over a small statistical sampling.
Data contention should not be precluded by the model. Different government sources may conflict with other government estimates. Revisions of data may also need to be tracked, such as initial estimates and revised, final figures.
The overall model should allow for both actual state analysis and hypothetical projected models based on variations in date and data into past, alternate present, or projected future scenarios. Systems for “scenario modelling” should allow data users to relatively easily grab economic models based on nations, regions, market segments, and date ranges.
Data should be able to be modelled at international and national levels, yet subnational models, such as by state, province, county, metropolitan area, postal code, or other internal subnational districting are highly encouraged and recommended for mature, industrialized nations.
The goal is for such a model to be able to show to a typical layperson any nation or region in the world, to identify relative economic conditions of any place on the globe. A user should be able to tell relative, general, and absolute, specific elements of economic prosperity and stability, crises and concerns, employer and employee information, macroeconomic and key microeconomic data.
While any layperson should have benefit of such a model, professional economists and researchers around the would should have a common global database for shared research-quality data.
Availability of such a model should enable governments, businesses and any member of the general public to better understand and respond to local and global economic situations. Hypothetical modelling tools should allow healthy competition between proponents of different economic theories to project alternative solutions to key global and regional economic crises and conflicts.
All submissions must be made on a voluntary, non-proprietary basis. Submissions should include all appropriate elements, including theoretical and applied mathematical models, descriptions of pragmatic purposes and utility value of various data elements, as well as sections on the lifecycle of data management: population, upkeep, revision, deprecation, etc.
All contact by bona fide parties interested in responding to the RFP or other participation in the Global Model should be sent to Peter Corless, firstname.lastname@example.org, 650-906-3134 (mobile).
What we need:
- Request For Proposal submissions.
- Request for Information (RFI), including more detailed requirements and clarifications.
- Volunteers interested in participating in a pilot project (please send a letter of interest, along with their resume or CV). Economists, financial sector analysts, statisticians, and IT professionals with database and data modelling background are most highly desired.
- Potential fiscal sponsors for grants and funding, or a larger, more-established stakeholder willing to act as host or incubator for the project.
- Potential partners interested in pooling or donating data, researchers, or IT resources.
- Liaisons with international, governmental, or professional groups or NGO stakeholders who wish the data to conform to rigors of control or formal standards.