Frank Schweitzer: "Local Interactions Do Matter"

Frank Schweitzer: "Local Interactions Do Matter: Sometimes the Minority Wins"

Lecture to be held on Monday, June 6, 2005, 18:15.
Room HG D 16.2, Main Building, ETH Zurich. 


Collective decision making is important when trying to understand the dynamics of social groups. Due to the complex nature of opinion formation, it is difficult to uncover the critical conditions that drive group decisions into a particular and sometimes unexpected direction. In this context, minimalistic agent-based models play a valuable role in revealing characteristic features of group decision making. By means of both computer simulations and analytical investigations, the role of local interactions between neighboring agents or the influence of biased information on the outcome of the decision process can be determined.
This talk will cover different models that elucidate generic effects such as the emergence of a minority (of agents with a particular opinion), their local concentration, their winning chances in a hierarchical decision process, or their influence in a network.

Frank Schweitzer is Professor of Systems Design at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zurich).