Paper published: A Package for Measuring Emergence, Self-organization, and Complexity Based on Shannon Entropy

We present a set of Matlab/Octave functions to compute measures of emergence, self-organization, and complexity applied to discrete and continuous data. These measures are based on Shannon’s information and differential entropy. Examples from different datasets and probability distributions are provided to show how to use our proposed code.

Santamaría-Bonfil, G., Gershenson, C. & Fernández, N. (2017). A package for measuring emergence, self-organization, and complexity based on Shannon entropy. Frontiers in Robotics and AI, 4:10.

Paper published: Complexity of lakes in a latitudinal gradient

Highlights • The useful of quantitative indicators of ecological complexity is evaluated. • Chaos should not be confused with complexity. • Light and temperature cause different ranges of complexity in the gradient. • Homoeostasis variation is related to the seasonal changes and transitions. • Autopoiesis reveals groups with higher and lower degree of autonomy. Abstract Measuring complexity is fast becoming a key instrument to compare different ecosystems at various scales in ecology. To date there has been little agreement on how to properly describe complexity in terms of ecology. In this regard, this manuscript assesses the significance of using a set of proposed measures based on information theory. These measures are as follows: emergence, self-organization, complexity, homeostasis and autopoiesis. A combination of quantitative and qualitative approaches was used in the data analysis with the aim to apply these proposed measures. This study systematically reviews the data previously …

Call for Abstracts CCS'17: The Conference on Complex Systems 2017

//Please forward to whom might be interested CCS'17: The Conference on Complex Systems 2017  Cancun, Mexico. September 17-22. The flagship conference of the Complex Systems Society will go to Latin America for the first time in 2017. The Mexican complex systems community is enthusiast to welcome colleagues to one of our richest destinations: Cancun.

The conference will include presentations by the recipient of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry Mario Molina (environment), Raissa D'Souza (network science), Ranulfo Romo (neuroscience), Jaime Urrutia-Fucugauchi (geophysics), Antonio Lazcano (origins of life), Marta González (human mobility), Dirk Brockmann (epidemiology), Kristina Lerman (information sciences), Stefano Battiston (economics), John Quackenbush (computational biology), Giovanna Miritello (data science), and more TBA.

We invite abstract contributions (500 words maximum) for oral presentations or posters in the following tracks:
Foundations of Complex Systems …

Postdoctoral Fellowships at UNAM

//Please forward to whom may be interested.

The National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) has an open call for postdoctoral fellowships to start in September, 2017. 

Candidates should have obtained a PhD degree within the last five years to the date of the beginning of the fellowship.
 There will be another call to begin March, 2018 closing around June 2017.

The area of interests of candidates should fall within complex systems, networks, artificial life, urbanism, information, evolution, cognition, robotics, and/or philosophy.

 Interested candidates should send CV and a tentative project/research interests (1 paragraph) to by Tuesday, January 31st (paperwork has to be made before February 3rd). 
Postdoctoral fellowships are between one and two years (after renewal).
 Spanish is not a requisite.
 Accepted candidates would be working at the Computer Science Department ( ) of the IIMAS ( ), and/or at the Cente…

New paper: Traffic Games: Modeling Freeway Traffic with Game Theory

We apply game theory to a vehicular traffic model to study the effect of driver strategies on traffic flow. The resulting model inherits the realistic dynamics achieved by a two-lane traffic model and aims to incorporate phenomena caused by driver-driver interactions. To achieve this goal, a game-theoretic description of driver interaction was developed. This game-theoretic formalization allows one to model different lane-changing behaviors and to keep track of mobility performance. We simulate the evolution of cooperation, traffic flow, and mobility performance for different modeled behaviors. The analysis of these results indicates a mobility optimization process achieved by drivers’ interactions.

Cortés-Berrueco LE, Gershenson C, Stephens CR (2016) Traffic Games: Modeling Freeway Traffic with Game Theory. PLoS ONE11(11): e0165381. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0165381

On Discrimination, Prejudice, and Ignorance

With the recent refugee wave from countries with a Muslim majority, we have been flooded by a wave of fear-fueled propaganda against them. Muslims treat their women badly. Muslims are violent. Muslims are this, Muslims are that. The Koran says this, the Koran says that. Europe is not what it used to be, it is getting full of Muslims. After living four years in Brussels and dealing with plenty of Moroccans and Turks, these clichés never matched my experience. I teach that science has flourished and been repressed in Muslim and Christian countries at different epochs, so the obstacle has been not so much the religion but how the institutions use a religion. Just like Jihadists use Islam to promote their agenda, you can interpret other texts for your own ends, and then you have Nazism and the KKK. Humanism and reason should be beyond religions. But the Koran says kill all the infidels. And the Bible says kill all the blasphemous. It is true that terrorists groups are using Islam to brain…

New draft: Adaptive Cities: A Cybernetic Perspective on Urban Systems

Cities are changing constantly. All urban systems face different conditions from day to day. Even when averaged regularities can be found, urban systems will be more efficient if they can adapt to changes at the same speeds at which these occur. Technology can assist humans in achieving this adaptation. Inspired by cybernetics, we propose a description of cities as adaptive systems. We identify three main components: information, algorithms, and agents, which we illustrate with current and future examples. The implications of adaptive cities are manifold, with direct impacts on mobility, sustainability, resilience, governance, and society. Still, the potential of adaptive cities will not depend so much on technology as on how we use it.

Adaptive Cities: A Cybernetic Perspective on Urban Systems
Carlos Gershenson, Paolo Santi, Carlo Ratti