Nia Amazeen (Psychology) joins the CSDC Executive Board (12/20/2011)
Nia joins the CSDC Executive Board replacing Steven Neuberg, also of the Psychology department, thereby completing the carefully designed balance of the social and natural sciences that is the hallmark of the CSDC. Other members of the Board include Dieter Armbruster (Mathematics), Michael Barton (SHESC), Jennifer Fewell (SoLS), William Griffin (SSFD) and Manfred Laubichler (SoLS). A special "thank you" to Steve for his many contributions to the creation and development of the CSDC over these last 5 years.
CSDC Director Manfred Laubichler named Associate Director of the Origins Project (11/23/2011)
As the new Associate Director, Manfred will contribute to ongoing strategic planning and operations, spearhead workshops dealing with complexity and adaptive systems, and assist in the development of the emerging Origins Project curriculum. For more on Manfred's work leading to this new appointment, see http://origins.asu.edu/news/laubichler/.
CSDC Director Michael Barton publishes important research using computational modeling to suggest a link between early human response to global climate change and extinction of the Neanderthals (11/21/2011)
Research by Michael Barton, Director of the CSDC and colleagues at ASU and the U of Colorado Denver gives new insights on the extinction of the Neanderthals. In a recent paper (“Modeling Human Ecodynamics and Biocultural Interactions in the Late Pleistocene of Western Eurasia”) published in the December issue of the journal of Human Ecology, Barton along with co-authors Marty Andries (SHESC/SOS) and Gabriel Popescu (SHESC grad student) and Julien Riel-Salvatore (SHESC PhD now at U Colorado Denver) report that their research using computational modeling suggests a link between global climate change and the extinction of the Neanderthals. Their work incorporates feedback across three evolutionary systems: biological, cultural and environmental. One result of this research questions the long-held view that Neanderthals went extinct because they were not as "advanced" as other early humans. Rather, they were as behaviorally sophisticated as modern humans, readily adapting to changes in the environment. This led to migrations and eventual intermingling with other early human groups. As a result, the physical distinctions that marked the Neanderthals were "bred" out of existence. Read more at: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2011/11/111125-neanderthals-sex-humans-dna-science-extinct http://news.discovery.com/history/neanderthals-adapt-climate-change-111118.html?ewrd=1.
To see the model: http://www.openabm.org/model/2648/version/3/view.
Arizona Board of Regents and ASU Provost Office Approve Continuance of the CSDC for 5 more years (11-1-2011)
The Arizona Board of Regents requires that every center and institute undergo a substantive review every five years. The purpose of the review is to assess the unit’s viability, quality, and progress. The review is also designed to facilitate strategic planning. In October of 2011, the CSDC submitted a detailed self-report summarizing the center's activities and its impact on the research and scholarly development of complexity science. Based on this review, ABOR, the Provost's Office and Graduate College have agreed to contiuance of the center without conditions for another five years. Thanks to all the faculty, researchers, graduate students and staff who have contributed to the success of the CSDC. We are looking forward to five more years of service to ASU and complexity science worldwide.
Bert Hölldobler Awarded Cothenius Medal for Lifetime Achievement (10/6/2011)
The German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina honored Arizona State University Foundation Professor Bert Hölldobler and two others with Cothenius Medals as part of the opening ceremonies of the Leopoldina’s Annual Assembly on Sept. 23, in Germany. Bert is a founding father of the CSDC and member of the Advisory Board.
Bert is an internationally-recognized behavioral scientist and evolutionary biologist, who revolutionized understanding about social organization in insects. Richly deserving the Cothenius Medal for lifetime achievement, he has advanced new discoveries about chemical communication and orientation behavior in animals, the dynamics of social or ganizations and the evolution of animal communities.
Bert came to ASU in 2004, following professorships with University of Frankfurt, Harvard University, Cornell University and University of Würzburg, Germany. In ASU's School of Life Sciences he has built dynamic partnerships and helped to develop the social insect research group (SIRG), with Robert Page, vice provost and dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and founding director of the School of Life Sciences. This creative collective of 10 faculty members, most of whom are CSDC Core Faculty, studies bees, ants, termites and wasps with focus on neuroscience, biomedicine and sociobiology; genetics and epigenetics; complex adaptive systems and robotics. (Full Story)
CoMSES Net Announces CoMSES Challenge 2012
The Network for Computational Modeling for SocioEcological Science (CoMSES Net) is a scientific research coordination network to support and expand the development and use of computational modeling in the social and life sciences. The National Science Foundation (NSF) sponsors CoMSES Net through a grant to Michael Barton and Marco Janssen through the CSDC. CoMSES Net brings together social and natural scientists using advanced modeling to study coupled natural and human, or ‘socioecological’ systems (SES).
The ComSES Challenge 2012 – Models for Sustainability.
The challenge is to develop an agent-based model that can be used to teach concepts of sustainability at the high school level. The author(s) of the winning entry will receive a cash prize of 1000 Euro. The models will be evaluated by high school students as well as a jury of scholars. The deadline for submissions is April 2, 2012. Full details of the ComSES Challenge 2012 can be found at http://www.openabm.org/story/comses-challenge-2012.