Justin Lane and I have just had an article published in the Journal for the Cognitive Science of Religion titled “The Computational Science of Religion” (available for download here).
The article provides a basic overview of the most common methods of computer modeling and simulation that are currently being used to study religion. It focuses on the use (and illustrates the value) of system dynamics models, agent-based models, including game theory and multi-agent artificial intelligence models, and artificial neural networks. General use case examples are provided, and considerations for future research are discussed. We conclude by encouraging scholars interested in religion and related fields to incorporate techniques from the computational science of religion into their collaborative methodological toolkits.
It also provides a nice background for the sort of work we do at the NORCE Center for Modeling Social Systems.