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At the Crossroads: Lessons and Challenges in Computational Social Science

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889450213 Year: Pages: 98 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-021-3 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Physics (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2018-02-27 16:16:44
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The interest of physicists in economic and social questions is not new: for over four decades, we have witnessed the emergence of what is called nowadays “sociophysics” and “econophysics”, vigorous and challenging areas within the wider “Interdisciplinary Physics”. With tools borrowed from Statistical Physics and Complexity, this new area of study have already made important contributions, which in turn have fostered the development of novel theoretical foundations in Social Science and Economics, via mathematical approaches, agent-based modelling and numerical simulations. From these foundations, Computational Social Science has grown to incorporate as well the empirical component —aided by the recent data deluge from the Web 2.0 and 3.0—, closing in this way the experiment-theory cycle in the best tradition of Physics.

Foundations of Theoretical Approaches in Systems Biology

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889456833 Year: Pages: 216 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-683-3 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Biology
Added to DOAB on : 2019-01-23 14:53:43
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If biology in the 20th century was characterized by an explosion of new technologies and experimental methods, that of the 21st has seen an equally exuberant proliferation of mathematical and computational methods that attempt to systematize and explain the abundance of available data. As we live through the consolidation of a new paradigm where experimental data goes hand in hand with computational analysis, we contemplate the challenge of fusing these two aspects of the new biology into a consistent theoretical framework. Whether systems biology will survive as a field or be washed away by the tides of future fads will ultimately depend on its success to achieve this type of synthesis. The famous quote attributed to Kurt Lewin comes to mind: "there is nothing more practical than a good theory". This book presents a wide assortment of articles on systems biology in an attempt to capture the variety of current methods in systems biology and show how they can help to find answers to the challenges of modern biology.

Quantum Structures in Cognitive and Social Science

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889198764 Year: Pages: 168 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-876-4 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Science (General) --- Psychology
Added to DOAB on : 2016-01-19 14:05:46
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Traditional approaches to cognitive psychology correspond with a classical view of logic and probability theory. More specifically, one typically assumes that cognitive processes of human thought are founded on the Boolean structures of classical logic, while the probabilistic aspects of these processes are based on the Kolmogorovian structures of classical probability theory. However, growing experimental evidence indicates that the models founded on classical structures systematically fail when human decisions are at stake. These experimental deviations from classical behavior have been called `paradoxes’, `fallacies’, `effects’ or `contradictions’, depending on the specific situation where they appear. But, they involve a broad spectrum of cognitive and social science domains, ranging from conceptual combination to decision making under uncertainty, behavioral economics, and linguistics. This situation has constituted a serious drawback to the development of various disciplines, like cognitive science, linguistics, artificial intelligence, economic modeling and behavioral finance. A different approach to cognitive psychology, initiated two decades ago, has meanwhile matured into a new domain of research, called ‘quantum cognition’. Its main feature is the use of the mathematical formalism of quantum theory as modeling tool for these cognitive situations where traditional classically based approaches fail. Quantum cognition has recently attracted the interest of important journals and editing houses, academic and funding institutions, popular science and media. Specifically, within a quantum cognition approach, one assumes that human decisions do not necessarily obey the rules of Boolean logic and Kolmogorovian probability, and can on the contrary be modeled by the quantum-mechanical formalism. Different concrete quantum-theoretic models have meanwhile been developed that successfully represent the cognitive situations that are classically problematical, by explaining observed deviations from classicality in terms of genuine quantum effects, such as `contextuality’, `emergence’, `interference’, `superposition’, `entanglement’ and `indistinguishability’. In addition, the validity of these quantum models is convincingly confirmed by new experimental tests. We also stress that, since the use of a quantum-theoretic framework is mainly for modeling purposes, the identification of quantum structures in cognitive processes does not presuppose (without being incompatible with it) the existence of microscopic quantum processes in the human brain. In this Research Topic, we review the major achievements that have been obtained in quantum cognition, by providing an accurate picture of the state-of-the-art of this emerging discipline. Our overview does not pretend to be either complete or exhaustive. But, we aim to introduce psychologists and social scientists to this challenging new research area, encouraging them, at the same time, to consider its promising results. It is our opinion that, if continuous progress in this domain can be realized, quantum cognition can constitute an important breakthrough in cognitive psychology, and potentially open the way towards a new scientific paradigm in social science.

Development of Microbial Ecological Theory: Stability, Plasticity, and Evolution of Microbial Ecosystems

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889451692 Year: Pages: 156 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88945-169-2 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Microbiology --- Science (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2017-08-28 14:01:09
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“How can we develop microbial ecological theory?” The development of microbial ecological theory has a long way to reach its goal. Advances in microbial ecological techniques provide novel insights into microbial ecosystems. Articles in this book are challenging to determine the central and general tenets of the ecological theory that describes the features of microbial ecosystems. Their achievements expand the frontiers of current microbial ecology and propose the next step. Assemblage of these diverse articles hopefully helps to go on this long journey with many avenues for advancement of microbial ecology.

Immune System Modeling and Analysis

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Book Series: Frontiers Research Topics ISSN: 16648714 ISBN: 9782889195015 Year: Pages: 401 DOI: 10.3389/978-2-88919-501-5 Language: English
Publisher: Frontiers Media SA
Subject: Allergy and Immunology --- Medicine (General)
Added to DOAB on : 2015-12-03 13:02:24
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The rapid development of new methods for immunological data collection - from multicolor flow cytometry, through single-cell imaging, to deep sequencing - presents us now, for the first time, with the ability to analyze and compare large amounts of immunological data in health, aging and disease. The exponential growth of these datasets, however, challenges the theoretical immunology community to develop methods for data organization and analysis. Furthermore, the need to test hypotheses regarding immune function, and generate predictions regarding the outcomes of medical interventions, necessitates the development of mathematical and computational models covering processes on multiple scales, from the genetic and molecular to the cellular and system scales. The last few decades have seen the development of methods for presentation and analysis of clonal repertoires (those of T and B lymphocytes) and phenotypic (surface-marker based) repertoires of all lymphocyte types, and for modeling the intricate network of molecular and cellular interactions within the immune systems. This e-Book, which has first appeared as a ‘Frontiers in Immunology’ research topic, provides a comprehensive, online, open access snapshot of the current state of the art on immune system modeling and analysis.

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