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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

"An Introduction to SFC Models Using Python" Published

Stock-Flow Consistent (SFC) models are a preferred way to present economic models in the post-Keynesian tradition. This book gives an overview of the sfc_models package, which implements SFC models in Python. The approach is novel, in that the user only specifies the high-level parameters of the economic model, and the framework generates and solves the implied equations. The framework is open source, and is aimed at both researchers and those with less experience with economic models. This book explains to researchers how to extend the sfc_models framework to implement advanced models. For those who are new to SFC models, the book explains some of the basic principles behind these models, and it is possible for the reader to run example code (which is packaged with the software online) to examine the model output.

The book is available in ebook and paperback editions.

Book Description

The book is 128 pages, excluding end matter. It includes some figures, along with some example code. The writing style is different from the author's usual style, as most of the text involves a technical description of the Python code. There are some descriptions describing the behaviour of stock-flow consistent models which are less technical.

The sfc_models source code is available at: https://github.com/brianr747/SFC_models, or as a download from the Python Package Repository. The large examples discussed in the book are packaged with the source code.

The book has been released in both paperback and an ebook edition. The paperback is available at a number of online retailers; it may take several weeks for it to appear at some distributors. The ebook edition is currently only available for the Kindle (Amazon). The Kindle format has a fixed page layout that replicates the paperback, similar to reading a PDF file. (This means the ebook has some surprising features, such as intentionally blank pages.) Not all Kindle readers may support this format.

If the paperback edition is purchased from Amazon, you should be offered the option to get the Kindle edition as well for free. It may take a day or two for this feature to show up, as it takes time for their systems to link the two editions.

There were formatting problems discovered very late in the production process which have delayed the release of the ebook edition to other retailers (EPUB edition). The EPUB format that is accepted by other retailers features reflowing pages (like my previous ebooks). Reflowing pages are like web pages, in that they reformat according to the size of your viewing screen (very convenient for small reading devices). Unfortunately, this flexibility broke the Python code formatting in the example code. It is unclear when this will be fixed.

ISBN Information

  • Paperback ISBN 978-0-9947480-9-6
  • Kindle ISBN 978-1-775167-0-0

Chapters

  1. Introduction
  2. Why Python?
  3. Model Structure
  4. Equations and Their Solution
  5. Closed Economy Models
  6. Open Economy Models
  7. Extending the sfc_models Framework



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