On June 11, the SFI Press released the second volume in its Seminar Series, The Emergence of Premodern States, edited by Jeremy A. Sabloff and Paula L.W. Sabloff. This project tackles one of the most deceptively simple inquiries in archaeology: How did humans transition from hunter-gatherer societies into states — collective entities that are the movers and shakers of the modern world?
An SFI team led by Professor Mirta Galesic has received a nearly $500,000 grant from the US Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture to study how people form beliefs about genetically modified crops.
We humans make social judgments about ourselves and others that can appear contradictory. A new Social Sampling Model, presented by Professor Mirta Galesic and External Professor Henrik Olsson, suggest these apparently conflicting judgments can be explained by a single quantitative theory.
Complexity scientists meet at SFI to examine how collective decisions get made in biological systems and to what degree those systems share a mechanism from one system to the next.
A new proof by SFI Professor David Wolpert sends a humbling message to would-be super intelligences: you can’t know everything all the time.
Researchers analyzed new data on the Chilean elections of the 1970s to understand how economies react to institutional change.
"Algorithmic Information Dynamics: From Networks to Cells," is a new online course that will introduce students to tools that allow them to explore causal relationships in complex datasets. Register online through Complexity Explorer.
Three researchers are spending several months at SFI to tackle some big questions: “Why do we sleep less as we get older?” “What do city pigeons have in common with drug interactions?” and “Is there a trajectory underlying human history?” to name a few.
In a new study, researchers examined just how accurate our collective intelligence is and how individual bias and information sharing skew aggregate estimates. Using their findings, they developed a mathematical correction that takes into account bias and social information to generate an improved crowd estimate.
Science writer Katherine Mast chatted with ASU-SFI Fellow Elizabeth Hobson about her upcoming experiments from a grant received by the Army Research Office to conduct social science research.
New research from an interdisciplinary collaboration among historians, political scientists, and statisticians suggests that rhetorical innovations may have played a significant role in winning acceptance for the new principles of governance that built the French republic’s foundation — and inspired future democracies around the world.
The Social Reactors working group meets April 5-6 to quantify the social processes that could govern both modern and ancient cities.
A workshop at SFI in early April explores questions about scientific value. This event brings together researchers and institutional leaders who will discuss how to measure impact and improve judgment by looking at tools of complexity.
The noise in high-dimensional datasets can obscure real correlations — and give rise to illusory patterns that don’t mean anything. April 2-5, an interdisciplinary group of mathematicians, physicists, and theoretical computer scientists meets at SFI to address the problem and devise new algorithms that can succeed all the way up to the limits that arise from not having enough data, or not knowing if the data is accurate.
A team of scientists has made a fundamental discovery about how fires on the edges of these forests control their shape and stability. Their study implies that when patches of tropical forest lose their natural shape it could contribute to the sudden, even catastrophic, transformation of that land from trees to grass.
Collective movement is one of the great natural wonders on Earth and has long captured our imaginations. But there’s a lot we don’t understand about how collective movement drives — and is driven by — broader ecological and evolutionary processes.
In a paper published in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, B, SFI Omidyar Fellow Andrew Berdahl, long-time collaborator Colin Torney (University of Glasgow), and co-authors, used drones to collect overhead footage of migrating caribou. This is the first paper to use drones to record the movement of individual animals within groups. It is also among the first to study social interactions within those groups as they migrate.