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Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the science of complex systems, and its importance to understanding the world around us.

Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss complexity and how it can help us understand the world around us. When living beings come together and act in a group, they do so in complicated and unpredictable ways: societies often behave very differently from the individuals within them. Complexity was a phenomenon little understood a generation ago, but research into complex systems now has important applications in many different fields, from biology to political science. Today it is being used to explain how birds flock, to predict traffic flow in cities and to study the spread of diseases.


Ian Stewart
Emeritus Professor of Mathematics at the University of Warwick

Jeff Johnson
Professor of Complexity Science and Design at the Open University

Professor Eve Mitleton-Kelly
Director of the Complexity Research Group at the London School of Economics.

Producer: Thomas Morris.

Available now

43 minutes

Last on

Thu 19 Dec 2013 21:30


Ian Stewart at the University of Warwick


Eve Mitleton-Kelly at the London School of Economics


LSE Complexity Group


Centre for Complexity and Design - The Open University


Institute for Complex Systems Simulation - University of Southampton


Centre for Complexity Science - University of Warwick


Complex Systems Digital Campus


Complexity - Wikipedia





Albert-Laszlo Barabasi, Linked: The New Science of Networks (Perseus Books, 2003)


Mark Buchanan, Nexus: Small Worlds and the Groundbreaking Science of Networks (W. W. Norton & Company, 2003)


Mark Earls, Herd: How to Change Mass Behaviour by Harnessing Our True Nature (John Wiley & Sons, 2009)


Roger Lewin, Complexity: Life at the Edge of Chaos (University of Chicago Press, 1992)


Melanie Mitchell, Complexity: A Guided Tour (Oxford University Press, 2011)


Herbert Simon, The Sciences of the Artificial (MIT Press, 1996)


Steven Strogatz, Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order (Hyperion, 2003)


Duncan Watts, Small Worlds: The Dynamics of Networks between Order and Randomness (Princeton University Press, 2003)



Role Contributor
Presenter Melvyn Bragg
Interviewed Guest Ian Stewart
Interviewed Guest Jeff Johnson
Interviewed Guest Eve Mitleton-Kelly
Producer Thomas Morris


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