Why Society is a Complex Matter

Author: Philip Ball
Publisher: Springer Science & Business Media
ISBN: 3642290000
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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Society is complicated. But this book argues that this does not place it beyond the reach of a science that can help to explain and perhaps even to predict social behaviour. As a system made up of many interacting agents – people, groups, institutions and governments, as well as physical and technological structures such as roads and computer networks – society can be regarded as a complex system. In recent years, scientists have made great progress in understanding how such complex systems operate, ranging from animal populations to earthquakes and weather. These systems show behaviours that cannot be predicted or intuited by focusing on the individual components, but which emerge spontaneously as a consequence of their interactions: they are said to be ‘self-organized’. Attempts to direct or manage such emergent properties generally reveal that ‘top-down’ approaches, which try to dictate a particular outcome, are ineffectual, and that what is needed instead is a ‘bottom-up’ approach that aims to guide self-organization towards desirable states. This book shows how some of these ideas from the science of complexity can be applied to the study and management of social phenomena, including traffic flow, economic markets, opinion formation and the growth and structure of cities. Building on these successes, the book argues that the complex-systems view of the social sciences has now matured sufficiently for it to be possible, desirable and perhaps essential to attempt a grander objective: to integrate these efforts into a unified scheme for studying, understanding and ultimately predicting what happens in the world we have made. Such a scheme would require the mobilization and collaboration of many different research communities, and would allow society and its interactions with the physical environment to be explored through realistic models and large-scale data collection and analysis. It should enable us to find new and effective solutions to major global problems such as conflict, disease, financial instability, environmental despoliation and poverty, while avoiding unintended policy consequences. It could give us the foresight to anticipate and ameliorate crises, and to begin tackling some of the most intractable problems of the twenty-first century.

Future Information Society The Social And Technological Problems

Author: Burgin Mark
Publisher: World Scientific
ISBN: 9813108983
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book is the first volume of a two-volume edition based on the International Society for Information Studies Summit Vienna 2015 on "The Information Society at the Crossroads. Response and Responsibility of the Sciences of Information" (see summit.is4is.org). The book represents a trans-disciplinary endeavor of the leading experts in the field of information studies posing the question for a better society, in which social and technological innovations help make information key to the flourishing of humanity and dispense with the bleak view of the dark side of information society. It is aimed at readers that conduct research into any aspect of information, information society and information technology, who develop or implement social or technological applications. It is also for those who have an interest in participating in setting the goals for sciences of information and social applications of technological achievements and scientific results.

Connectography

Author: Parag Khanna
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0812988566
Format: PDF, ePub
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From the visionary bestselling author of The Second World and How to Run the World comes a bracing and authoritative guide to a future shaped less by national borders than by global supply chains, a world in which the most connected powers—and people—will win. Connectivity is the most revolutionary force of the twenty-first century. Mankind is reengineering the planet, investing up to ten trillion dollars per year in transportation, energy, and communications infrastructure linking the world’s burgeoning megacities together. This has profound consequences for geopolitics, economics, demographics, the environment, and social identity. Connectivity, not geography, is our destiny. In Connectography, visionary strategist Parag Khanna travels from Ukraine to Iran, Mongolia to North Korea, Pakistan to Nigeria, and across the Arctic Circle and the South China Sea to explain the rapid and unprecedented changes affecting every part of the planet. He shows how militaries are deployed to protect supply chains as much as borders, and how nations are less at war over territory than engaged in tugs-of-war over pipelines, railways, shipping lanes, and Internet cables. The new arms race is to connect to the most markets—a race China is now winning, having launched a wave of infrastructure investments to unite Eurasia around its new Silk Roads. The United States can only regain ground by fusing with its neighbors into a super-continental North American Union of shared resources and prosperity. Connectography offers a unique and hopeful vision for the future. Khanna argues that new energy discoveries and technologies have eliminated the need for resource wars; ambitious transport corridors and power grids are unscrambling Africa’s fraught colonial borders; even the Arab world is evolving a more peaceful map as it builds resource and trade routes across its war-torn landscape. At the same time, thriving hubs such as Singapore and Dubai are injecting dynamism into young and heavily populated regions, cyber-communities empower commerce across vast distances, and the world’s ballooning financial assets are being wisely invested into building an inclusive global society. Beneath the chaos of a world that appears to be falling apart is a new foundation of connectivity pulling it together. Praise for Connectography “Incredible . . . With the world rapidly changing and urbanizing, [Khanna’s] proposals might be the best way to confront a radically different future.”—The Washington Post “Clear and coherent . . . a well-researched account of how companies are weaving ever more complicated supply chains that pull the world together even as they squeeze out inefficiencies. . . . [He] has succeeded in demonstrating that the forces of globalization are winning.”—Adrian Woolridge, The Wall Street Journal “Bold . . . With an eye for vivid details, Khanna has . . . produced an engaging geopolitical travelogue.”—Foreign Affairs “For those who fear that the world is becoming too inward-looking, Connectography is a refreshing, optimistic vision.”—The Economist “Connectivity has become a basic human right, and gives everyone on the planet the opportunity to provide for their family and contribute to our shared future. Connectography charts the future of this connected world.”—Marc Andreessen, general partner, Andreessen Horowitz “Khanna’s scholarship and foresight are world-class. A must-read for the next president.”—Chuck Hagel, former U.S. secretary of defense This title has complex layouts that may take longer to download.

Socially Extended Epistemology

Author: J. Adam Carter
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019252190X
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Socially Extended Epistemology explores the epistemological ramifications of one of the most important research programmes in contemporary cognitive science: distributed cognition. In certain conditions, according to this programme, groups of people can generate distributed cognitive systems that consist of all participating members. This volume brings together a range of distinguished and early career academics, from a variety of different perspectives, to investigate the very idea of socially extended epistemology. They ask, for example: can distributed cognitive systems generate knowledge in a similar way to individuals? And if so, how, if at all, does this kind of knowledge differ from normal, individual knowledge? The first part of the volume examines foundational issues, including from a critical perspective. The second part of the volume turns to applications of this idea, and the new theoretical directions that it might take us. These include the ethical ramifications of socially extended epistemology, its societal impact, and its import for emerging digital technologies.

Pharmacy Education in the Twenty First Century and Beyond

Author: Ahmed Fathelrahman
Publisher: Academic Press
ISBN: 0128119462
Format: PDF
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Pharmacy Education in the Twenty First Century and Beyond: Global Achievements and Challenges offers a complete reference on global pharmacy education, along with a detailed discussion of future issues and solutions. This book begins with a brief overview of the history of pharmacy education, covering all levels of education and styles of learning, from undergraduate, continuing professional education, and methods for self-learning and development. Teaching strategies such as team-based learning, problem-based learning and interdisciplinary education are also described and compared to conclude why certain pharmacy programs attract students, and why educators prefer particular teaching strategies, assessment tools and learning styles. As a result, this book provides pharmacy educators, administrators, students and practitioners with a comprehensive guide to pharmacy education that will enable readers to choose the best approaches to improve, reform or select a program based on worldwide experience and the latest available evidence and research. Describes and discusses the advantages and disadvantages associated with different types of pharmacy curricula, degree programs, styles of learning, teaching strategies, and more Edited and written by a team of authors to provide diverse global experiences and insights into what factors make a program attractive and successful Covers important topics in pharmacy education, such as quality and accreditation issues, the business of pharmacy education, leadership and similarities

How People Learn

Author: National Research Council
Publisher: National Academies Press
ISBN: 0309131979
Format: PDF
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First released in the Spring of 1999, How People Learn has been expanded to show how the theories and insights from the original book can translate into actions and practice, now making a real connection between classroom activities and learning behavior. This edition includes far-reaching suggestions for research that could increase the impact that classroom teaching has on actual learning. Like the original edition, this book offers exciting new research about the mind and the brain that provides answers to a number of compelling questions. When do infants begin to learn? How do experts learn and how is this different from non-experts? What can teachers and schools do-with curricula, classroom settings, and teaching methods--to help children learn most effectively? New evidence from many branches of science has significantly added to our understanding of what it means to know, from the neural processes that occur during learning to the influence of culture on what people see and absorb. How People Learn examines these findings and their implications for what we teach, how we teach it, and how we assess what our children learn. The book uses exemplary teaching to illustrate how approaches based on what we now know result in in-depth learning. This new knowledge calls into question concepts and practices firmly entrenched in our current education system. Topics include: How learning actually changes the physical structure of the brain. How existing knowledge affects what people notice and how they learn. What the thought processes of experts tell us about how to teach. The amazing learning potential of infants. The relationship of classroom learning and everyday settings of community and workplace. Learning needs and opportunities for teachers. A realistic look at the role of technology in education.

Looking Ahead

Author: New Zealand. Office of the Prime Minister's Science Advisory Committee
Publisher:
ISBN: 9780477103374
Format: PDF
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Muddling Through

Author: Michael Fortun
Publisher: Counterpoint Press
ISBN: 9781887178488
Format: PDF, Docs
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Examines how politics and culture shape the sciences and what impact the sciences have on politics and culture

Critical Mass

Author: Philip Ball
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 9780374530419
Format: PDF, Docs
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Ball shows how much can be understood of human behavior when we cease to predict and analyze the behavior of individuals and instead look to the impact of individual decisions--whether in circumstances of cooperation or conflict--on our laws, institutions and customs.