IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Log in (now much improved!) to save this article

Topology, Metric and Dynamics of Social Systems

Listed author(s):
Registered author(s):

    Structurally orientated sociologists tend to neglect the dynamical aspects of social systems, whereas theorists of social systems emphasize systems dynamics but only rarely analyze structural features of their domains. The aim of this paper is to integrate dynamical and structural approaches by means of the analysis of particular artificial systems, namely logical or Boolean networks, and their geometry. It is well known that the dynamics of Boolean networks and the logically similar cellular automata are governed by control parameters. Less well known is the fact that the geometry of these artificial systems, understood as their topology and metric, also contain specific control parameters. These "geometrical" control parameters can be expressed using graph theoretical concepts such as the density of graphs or geodetical properties. Further, the dynamics of those artificial systems depend on the values for the geometrical parameters. These mathematical investigations are quite important for social research: On the one hand, social dynamics and social structure appear to be two closely related aspects of social reality; on the other hand, a general hypothesis may be drawn from our results, namely that social structural inequality yields simple dynamics whereas social equality gives rise to complex dynamics. Therefore the dynamical complexity of modern democratic societies may be in part due to their democratic structures.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Article provided by Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation in its journal Journal of Artificial Societies and Social Simulation.

    Volume (Year): 2 (1999)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages: 1-7

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:jas:jasssj:1999-14-1
    Contact details of provider:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:jas:jasssj:1999-14-1. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Flaminio Squazzoni)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.