Coping with Crises in Complex Socio-Economic Systems (CCSS)

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Funding: ETH Zurich

Duration: 2008 - 2011


Inspired by non-equilibrium physics and interdisciplinary research on complex systems, researchers have begun focusing directly on critical phenomena and extreme events in social systems.These phenomena are often characterized by power laws and other skew distributions that differ dramatically from the Gaussian curve. Under such circumstances, extreme outcomes occur much more often than is usually assumed based on the normal distribution.

The competence center was the predecessor of the ETH Risk Center.


Dirk Helbing

D. Helbing and W. Yu: The outbreak of cooperation among success-driven individuals under noisy conditions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA (PNAS) 106 (8), 3680-3685 (2009).

D. Helbing, Y. Wenjian and H. Rauhut: Self-organization and emergence in social systems: Modeling the coevolution of social environments and cooperative behavior. SFI Working Paper #09-07-026 (2009).

D. Helbing: Managing complexity in socio-economic systems. European Review 17 (2), 423-438 (2009).

J.R.G. Dyer, A. Johansson, D. Helbing, I.D. Couzin and J. Krause: Leadership, consensus decision making and collective behaviour in humans. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B 364, 781-789 (2009).

D. Nilsson and A. Johansson: Social influence during the initial phase of a fire evacuation-Analysis of evacuation experiments in a cinema theatre. Fire Safety Journal, 44 (1), 71-79 (2009).

H. Rauhut: Higher punishment, less control? Experimental evidence on the Inspection game. Rationality & Society, 21 (3) (2009).

D. Helbing, C. Kühnert, S. Lämmer, A. Johansson, B. Gehlsen, H. Ammoser and G.B. West: Power Laws in Urban Supply Networks, Social Systems, and Dense Pedestrian Crowds. Pages: 433-450 in: D. Lane, D. Pumain, S.E. van der Leeuw and G.B.West (eds.) Methodos Series: Methodological Prospects in the Social Sciences - Complexity Perspectives in Innovation and Social Change (2009).

D. Helbing: Pattern formation, social forces, and diffusion instability in games with success-driven motion. European Physical Journal B 67, 345–356 (2009).

D. Helbing and A. Mazloumian: Operation regimes and slower-is-faster effect in the control of traffic intersections. European Physical Journal B 70 (2), 257–274 (2009).

D. Helbing, M. Treiber, A. Kesting and M. Schönhof: Theoretical vs. empirical classification and prediction of congested traffic states. European Physical Journal B 69 (4), 583-598 (2009).

R. Sipahi, S. Lämmer, D. Helbing and S.-I. Niculescu: On stability problems of supply networks constrained with transport delay. Journal of Dynamic Systems. Measurement, and Control, 131, 021005-1 (2009).

R. Carvalho, L. Buzna, F. Bono, E. Gutiérrez, W. Just and D. Arrowsmith: Robustness of trans-European gas networks, Physical Review E 80, 016106 (2009).

D. Helbing, J. Jost and H. Kantz, eds.: Nonlinear physics everywhere: From molecules to cities. The European Physical Journal B 63 (3), 283-420 (2008).

I. Simonsen, L. Buzna, K. Peters, S. Bornholdt and D. Helbing: Dynamic effects increasing network vulnerability to cascading failures. Physical Review Letters, 100, 218701 (2008).

D. Helbing, ed.: Managing Complexity: Insights, Concepts, Applications (Springer, Berlin, 2007).

L. Buzna, K. Peters, H. Ammoser, C. Kühnert and D. Helbing: Efficient response to cascading disaster spreading. Physical Review E 75, 056107 (2007).

D. Helbing, A. Johansson and H.Z. Al-Abideen: The dynamics of crowd disasters: An empirical study. Physical Review E 75, 046109 (2007).

D. Helbing, A. Johansson, J. Mathiesen, M.H. Jensen and A. Hansen: Analytical approach to continuous and intermittent bottleneck flows. Physical Review Letters 97, 168001 (2006).

D. Helbing, H. Ammoser and C. Kühnert: Disasters as extreme events and the importance of network interactions for disaster response management. Pages 319-348. in: S. Albeverio, V. Jentsch, and H. Kantz (eds.) Extreme Events in Nature and Society (Springer, Berlin, 2005).

D. Helbing, I. Farkas and T. Vicsek: Simulating dynamical features of escape panic. Nature 407, 487-490 (2000).


Didier Sornette

L. Lin, R.E. Ren and D. Sornette: A Consistent Model of "Explosive" Financial Bubbles With Mean-Reversing Residuals, Quantitative Finance (2009).

D. Sornette, R. Woodard and W.-X. Zhou: The 2006-2008 Oil Bubble: evidence of speculation and prediction, Physica A 388, 1571-1576 (2009).

V.I. Yukalov and D. Sornette: Processing Information in Quantum Decision Theory, Entropy 11, 1073-1120 (2009).

V.I. Yukalov and D. Sornette: Physics of risk and uncertainty in quantum decision making, Eur. Phys. J.B. 71, 533-548 (2009).

D. Sornette and S. Utkin: Limits of Declustering Methods for Disentangling Exogenous from Endogenous Events in Time Series with Foreshocks, Main shocks and Aftershocks, Physical Review E 79, 061110 (2009).

A. Saichev and D. Sornette: Generation-by-Generation Dissection of the Response Function in Long memory Epidemic Processes, European Physical Journal B (2009).

D. Sornette and M.J. Werner: Statistical physics approaches to seismicity. Encyclopedia of Complexity and Systems Science (Springer, 2009).

A. Saichev and D. Sornette: Effects of Diversity and Procrastination in Priority Queuing Theory: the Different Power Law Regimes, Physical Review E (2009).

V.I. Yukalov, E.P. Yukalova and D. Sornette: Punctuated Evolution due to Delayed Carrying Capacity, Physica D 238, 1752-1767 (2009).

D. Sornette: Dragon-Kings, Black Swans and the Prediction of Crises, in press in the International Journal of Terraspace Science and Engineering (2009).

V.F. Pisarenko, D. Sornette and M.V. Rodki: Distribution of Maximum Earthquake Magnitudes in Future Time Intervals, Application to the Seismicity of Japan (1923-2007), submitted to Earth, Planets and Space (EPS) (2009).

M.J. Werner, K. Ide and D. Sornette: Earthquake Forecasting Based on Data Assimilation: Sequential Monte Carlo Methods for Renewal Processes (J. Geophys. Res., 2009).

J. Faillettaz, M. Funk and D. Sornette: Icequakes as precursors of ice avalances, Geophysical Research Letters (2009).

Y. Malevergne and D. Sornette: Extreme Financial Risks. From Dependence to Risk Management (Springer, Heidelberg, 2006).

A. Johansen and D. Sornette: Shocks, Crashes and Bubbles in Financial Markets, Brussels Economic Review (Cahiers
economiques de Bruxelles) 49 (3/4), Special Issue on Nonlinear Analysis (2006).

D. Sornette and W.-X. Zhou: Predictability of large future changes in major financial indices, International Journal of Forecasting 22, 153-168 (2006).

D. Sornette: Critical Phenomena in Natural Sciences. Chaos, Fractals, Self-Organization and Disorder, 2nd ed. (Springer, Heidelberg, 2004).

D. Sornette: Why Stock Markets Crash. Critical Events in Complex Financial Systems (Princeton University Press, 2003).

D. Sornette and A. Johansen: Significance of log-periodic precursors to financial crashes, Quantitative Finance 1 (4), 452-471 (2001).


Lars-Erik Cederman

L.-E. Cederman and K.S. Gleditsch: Introduction to Special Issue on "Disaggregating Civil War". Journal of Conflict Resolution 53, 487-495 (2009).

L.-E. Cederman, H. Buhaug and J.K. Rød: Ethno-Nationalist Dyads: A GIS-Based Analysis. Journal of Conflict Resolution 53, 496-525 (2009).

J. Vorrath and L.F. Krebs: Democratisation and Conflict in Ethnically Divided Societies. Living Reviews in Democracy (2009).

N.B. Weidmann and L.-E. Cederman: GeoContest: Modeling Strategic Competition in Geopolitical Systems. Social Science Computer Review 26 (2009).

A. Wimmer, L.-E. Cederman and B. Min: Ethnic Politics and Armed Conflict: A Configurational Analysis. American Sociological Review 74 (2), 316-337 (2009).

H. Buhaug, Cederman: and J. K. Rod. Disaggregating ethno-nationalist civil wars: A dyadic test of exclusion theory. International Organization, forthcoming (2008).

L.-E. Cederman and L. Girardin: Beyond Fractionalization: Mapping Ethnicity onto Nationalist Insurgencies. American Political Science Review 101, 173-186 (2007).

L.-E. Cederman: Computational Models of Social Forms: Advancing Process Theory. American Journal of Sociology 110 (4), 864-893 (2005).

L.-E. Cederman: Modeling the Size of Wars: From Billiard Balls to Sandpiles. American Political Science Review 97, 135-150 (2003).

L.-E. Cederman: Endogenizing Geopolitical Boundaries with Agent-Based Modeling. Proceedings of the National Academy 99 (Suppl. 3), 7796-7303 (2002).

L.-E. Cederman: Nationalism and Ethnicity. In: The Handbook of International Relations, edited by W. Carlsnaes, T. Risse, and B. Simmons (Sage, London, 2002).


Frank Schweitzer

V. Eguíluz, C. Tessone and J. Claudio: Critical behavior in an evolutionary model of altruistic behavior with social structure. Advances in Complex Systems, 12 (2), 221-232 (2009).

F. Schweitzer: Multi-agent approach to the self-organization of networks. In: Understanding and Managing Complex Agent-Based Dynamical Networks, Eds. F. Reed-Tsochas, N.F. Johnson, J. Efstathiou, forthcoming (World Scientific, Singapore, 2009).

J.B. Glattfelder and S. Battiston: Backbone of complex networks of corporations: The flow of control, Physical Review E, /80, 036104 (2009).

M. M. Geipel and F. Schweitzer: Software Change Dynamics: Empirical Evidence from 35 Java Projects Proceedings of the European Software Engineering Conference 2009, ESEC/FSE, pp. 269-272 (2009).

F. Schweitzer, G. Fagiolo, D. Sornette, F. Vega-Redondo, A. Vespignani, D.R. White: Economic Networks: The New Challenges, Science, vol. 325, pp.422-425 (2009).

H. U. Stark, C. J. Tessone, and F. Schweitzer: Decelerating microdynamics can accelerate macrodynamics in the voter model, Physical Review Letters, forthcoming (2008).

E. Navarro, R. Cantero, J. Rodrigues and F. Schweitzer: Investments in random environments, Physica A 387 (8-9), 2035-2046 (2008).

F. Schweitzer and R. Mach: The epidemics of donations: Logistic growth and power laws, PLoS ONE 3 (1), e1458 (2008).

F. E. Walter, S. Battiston, and F. Schweitzer: Coping with information overload through trust-based networks, in: D. Helbing (ed.) Managing Complexity: Insights, Concepts, Applications (Springer, Berlin, 2008), pp. 273-300.

F. E. Walter, S. Battiston, and F. Schweitzer: A model of a trust-based recommendation system on a social network, Journal of Autonomous Agents and Multi-Agent Systems, 16 (1), 57-74 (2007).

T. Fent, P. Groeber, and F. Schweitzer: Coexistence of social norms based on in- and out-group interactions, Advances in Complex Systems 10, 271-286 (2007).

F. Schweitzer: Brownian Agents and Active Particles. On the Emergence of Complex Behavior in the Natural and Social Sciences (Springer, Berlin, 2003).

F. Schweitzer and D. Helbing (eds.): Economic Dynamics from the Physics Point of View. Physica A 287, 339-691 (2000).


Kay W. Axhausen

H. Kato and K.W.Axhausen: Value of travel time savings incorporating the value of access. Working paper, 548, IVT, ETH Zurich, Zurich (2009).

M. van Eggermond and K.W. Axhausen: Using discrete choice models to support strategic decision-making of air transportation service providers. Working paper, 546, IVT, ETH Zurich (2009).

V. Killer and K.W. Axhausen: Mapping overlapping commuting areas, Arbeitsberichte Verkehrs- und Raumplanung, 555, Institute for Transport Planning and Systems (IVT), ETH Zurich (2009).

S. Sharma and K.W. Axhausen: Design diagrams for road infrastructure elements: High capacity roads. Arbeitsberichte Verkehrs- und Raumplanung, 559, Institute for Transport Planning and Systems (IVT), ETH Zurich (2009).

A. Frei and K.W. Axhausen: Report about results: user requirements and indications about demand volumes, KITE - a knowledge base for intermodal passenger travel in Europe, Deliverable 8, IVT, ETH Zürich (2009).

R. Waraich, D. Charypar, M. Balmer and K.W. Axhausen: Performance improvements for large scale traffic simulation in MATSim, paper presented at the 9th Swiss Transport Research Conference, Ascona (2009).

N. Schüssler and K.W. Axhausen: Map-matching of GPS traces on high-resolution navigation networks using the Multiple Hypothesis Technique (MHT), Arbeitsberichte Verkehrs- und Raumplanung, 568, IVT, ETH Zürich (2009).

S. Schönfelder and K.W. Axhausen: Travel as a function of (life) projects, paper presented at the European Transport Conference, Leiden (2009).

V. Killer and K.W. Axhausen: The Spatial and Temporal Change of Commuting Regions, Transportation Research Board (2009).

M. Kowald, A. Frei, J.K. Hackney, J. Illenberger and K.W. Axhausen: The influence of social contacts on leisure travel: A snowball sample of personal networks, paper presented at the 12th International Conference on Travel Behaviour Research, Jaipur (2009).

T. Kawasaki and K.W. Axhausen: Choice set generation from GPS data set for grocery shopping location choice modelling in canton Zurich: The comparison to Swiss Microcensus 2005, Arbeitsberichte Verkehrs- und Raumplanung, 595, IVT, ETH Zürich (2009).

J.W. Joubert and K.W. Axhausen: On the social networking of commercial vehicles, Working paper, 601, IVT, ETH Zurich (2009).

N.I.N. Elurui, C.R. Sener, R. Bhat, R. Pendyala and K.W. Axhausen: Understanding residential mobility: A joint model of the reason for residential reloaction and stay duration. Paper presented at the 88th Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C. (2009).

H. Kato, K.W. Axhausen and M. Imai: Value of travel time savings of urban private travel: comparison of Tokyo and Karlsruhe. Paper presented at the 86th Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board, Washington, D.C., January 2008. ith information overload through Trust-based networks. In: Managing Complexity: Insights, concepts, Applications (Ed. D. Helbing), 273-300 (Springer, Berlin, 2008).

K. W. Axhausen, Social networks, mobility biographies and travel: The survey challenges. Environment and Planning B, forthcoming (2007).

D. Charypar, K. Nagel, and K.W. Axhausen: An event-driven queue-based microsimulation of traffic flow. Transportation Research Record, forthcoming (2007).

M. Balmer, K.W. Axhausen, and K. Nagel: A demand generation framework for large scale micro-simulations. Transportation Research Record 1985, 125-134 (2007).

J. Larsen, J. Urry, and K.W. Axhausen: Mobilities, Networks, Geographies (Ashgate, Aldershot, 2006).

R. H. M. Emmerink, K.W. Axhausen, P. Nijkamp and P. Rietveld: Effects of information in road transport networks with recurrent congestion. Transportation 22 (1), 21-53 (1995).


Hans J. Herrmann

A.A. Moreira, J.S. Andrade Jr., H.J. Herrmann and J.O. Indekeu: How to make a fragile network robust and vice versa. Phys. Rev. Lett 102, 018701 (2009).

R.F.S. Andrade, J.S. Andrade Jr. and H.J. Herrmann: Ising model on the Apollonian network with node dependent interactions. Physical Review E, 79 (3), 036105 (2009).

C.M. Schneider, A.A. Moreira, J.S. Andrade Jr., S. Havlin and H.J. Herrmann: Enhancing Robustness to Malicious Attack of Complex Networks, forthcoming (2009).

E. Fehr, J.S. Andrade JR., S.D. Da Cunha, L.R. Da Silva, H.J. Herrmann, D. Kadau, C.F. Moukarzell and E.A. Oliveira: New efficient method to calculate watersheds, JSTAT, P09007 (2009).

J.S. Andrade, E.A. Oliveira, A.A. Moreira and H.J. Herrmann: Fracturing the optimal paths, Phys.Rev.Lett. 103, 225503 (2009).

K. Kovacs, I. Reiweger, H.J. Herrmann and J.Schweizer: Analytic study of snow failure using a fiber bindle model (2009).

P.G. Lind, H.J. Herrmann, J.S. Andrade JR. and L.R. da Silva: The spread of gossip in American schools, Europhys. Lett. 78, 68005 (2007).

M.C. Gonzalez, H.J. Herrmann, J. Kertész and T. Vicsek: Community structure and ethnic preferences in school friendship networks, Physica A 379, 307-316 (2007).

V. Schwämmle, M.C. Gonzalez, A.A. Moreira, J.S. Andrade JR. and H.J. Herrmann: Different topologies for a herding model of opinion, Phys. Rev. E 75, 066108 (2007).

P.G. Lind and H.J. Herrmann: New approaches to model and study social networks, New J. of Phys. 9, 228 (2007).

M.C. Gonzalez, P.G. Lind and H.J. Herrmann: Model of mobile agents for sexual interaction networks, Eur. Phys. J. B 49, 371-376 (2006).

M.C. Gonzalez, P.G. Lind and H.J. Herrmann: System of mobile agents to model social networks, Phys. Rev. Lett. 96, 088702 (2006).

M.C. Gonzalez, A.O. Sousa, H.J. Herrmann: Renormalizing Sznajd model on complex networks taking into account the effects of growth mechanisms, Eur. Phys. J. B 49, 253-257 (2006).

D.R. Paula, A.D. Aarujo, J.S. Andrade JR., H.J. Herrmann and J.A.C. Gallas: Periodic neural activity induced by network complexity, Phys. Rev. E 74, 017102 (2006).

C.H.A. Ferraz and H.J. Herrmann: The Kauffman model on small-world topology, Physica A 373, 770 (2006).

M.C. Gonzalez, P.G. Lind, H.J. Herrmann: Networks based on collisions among mobile agents, Physica D 224 , 137-148 (2006).

P.G. Lind, M.C. Gonzalez and H.J. Herrmann: Cycles and clustering in bipartite networks, Phys. Rev. E 72, 056127 (2005).

P.G. Lind, J.A.C. Gallas and H.J. Herrmann: Coherence in random and deterministic scale-free networks of chaotic maps, Phys. Rev. E 70, 056207 (2004).

M.C. González and H.J. Herrmann: Scaling of the propagation of epidemics in a system of mobile agents, Physica A 340, 741-748 (2004).

D. Helbing, H.J. Herrmann, M. Schreckenberg, and D. E. Wolf (eds.): Granular and Traffic Flow '99: Social, Traffic, and Granular Dynamics (Springer, Berlin, 2000).

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