Michael Vittitow

From the rise of complex human institutions such as cities and nation states, to the evolution of intelligence in natural systems, complexity is a pervasive feature of our universe, our society, and our biological selves. Why should that be, and how can we study complexity, understand it, even predict its future forms across systems and scales?

On Monday evening, August 6, during an SFI public panel discussion on the nature of complexity, Nobel laureate Murray Gell-Mann joined some of the biggest thinkers in science to grapple with some of the biggest questions in science.

Watch the discussion here (86 minutes)

Listen to a radio interview with David Krakauer on KSFR's Santa Fe Radio Cafe (30 minutes, August 6, 2012)

Read an interview about the event with David Krakauer in the Santa Fe New Mexican (August 5, 2012)

“From the Big Bang to the Mayans, from the gene to the global economy, why is there complexity in the universe?” asks SFI External Professor David Krakauer, who moderated the discussion. “This is about the biggest questions you would ever want answered. Why are we here? What is the fate of our species? What is the fate of our planet?”

The panelists explored:

  • The evolution of complexity and intelligence on earth (more)
  • The hidden laws that pervade complex phenomena, especially biological and social phenomena (more)
  • Universal patterns in the emergence of complex societies (more)

Speakers included:

The event marked the beginning of a three-year SFI research program supported by the John Templeton Foundation that seeks a deeper quantitative and theoretic understanding of the nature of complexity in the social and biological worlds (more).

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