This work provides a careful selection of extended contributions presented at the 2014 ECCS conference and its satellite meetings, reflecting the scope and diversity of both fundamental and applied research areas in the field. The ECCS meeting, held under the patronage of the Complex Systems Society, is an annual event that has become the leading European conference devoted to complexity science. It presents cutting-edge research and offers a unique opportunity to study novel scientific approaches in a multitude of application areas. ECCS'14, the eleventh annual event, took place in Lucca, Italy. It gathered some 650 scholars representing a wide range of topics related to complex systems research, with emphasis on interdisciplinary approaches. The editors are leading specialists in the area.The book is of great interest to scientists, researchers and graduate students in complexity, complex systems and networks.
The field of complex network exploded since the 1990s, the number of publications in a variety of different areas has grown exponentially and practically, and every discipline started to recognize the presence of these mathematical structures in its area of research. Actually almost any system from the nowadays traditional example of the Internet to complex patterns of metabolic reactions can be analyzed through the graph theory. In its simplest and non rigorous definition a graph is a mathematical object consisting of a set of elements (vertices) and a series of links between these vertices (edges). This is of course a very general description, and as any mathematical abstraction, the idea is to discard many of the particular properties of the phenomenon studied. Nevertheless, this modeling is remarkably accurate for a variety of situations. Vertices can be persons related by friendship or acquaintances relations. Vertices can be proteins connected with one another if they interact in the cell. Networks have always existed in Nature of course, but it is fair to say that given the present technological explosion, they became more and more important. Starting from the Internet the web of connections between computers we started to link and share our documents through web applications and we start to get connected with a number of persons larger than usual. It is this revolution in our daily habit that made natural thinking of networks in science and research. Once this has been realized it became natural to see the cell as a network of molecular events from chemical reactions to gene expressions. The point is to establish if this new perspective can help researchers in finding new results and by understanding the development of these phenomena and possibly control their evolution. We believe that this is the case and in the following we shall provide the evidence of that. Together with applications there are of course true scientific questions attached to network theory. Consider the various ways in which the edges are distributed among the vertices: even by keeping the number of edges and vertices constant we have many different patterns possible. Interestingly some features used to describe these shapes are not related to the particular example considered, but instead they are universal. That is to say they can be found in almost any network around.
In this book, we introduce the subject of complex networks and we present the structure of the associated topics that range from social science to biology and finance. We start by considering the mathematical foundations of networks and we then move to an overview of the various applications
From ecosystems to Facebook, from the Internet to the global financial market, some of the most important and familiar natural systems and social phenomena are based on a networked structure. It is impossible to understand the spread of an epidemic, a computer virus, large-scale blackouts, or massive extinctions without taking into account the network structure that underlies all these phenomena. In this Very Short Introduction, Guido Caldarelli and Michele Catanzaro discuss the nature and variety of networks, using everyday examples from society, technology, nature, and history to explain and understand the science of network theory. They show the ubiquitous role of networks; how networks self-organize; why the rich get richer; and how networks can spontaneously collapse. They conclude by highlighting how the findings of complex network theory have very wide and important applications in genetics, ecology, communications, economics, and sociology. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.
This book provides a comprehensive yet short description of the basic concepts of Complex Network theory. In contrast to other books the authors present these concepts through real case studies. The application topics span from Foodwebs, to the Internet, the World Wide Web and the Social Networks, passing through the International Trade Web and Financial time series. The final part is devoted to definition and implementation of the most important network models. The text provides information on the structure of the data and on the quality of available datasets. Furthermore it provides a series of codes to allow immediate implementation of what is theoretically described in the book. Readers already used to the concepts introduced in this book can learn the art of coding in Python by using the online material. To this purpose the authors have set up a dedicated web site where readers can download and test the codes. The whole project is aimed as a learning tool for scientists and practitioners, enabling them to begin working instantly in the field of Complex Networks.