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NIMBioS Investigative Workshop, Animal Social Networks

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Topic: The dynamics of small non-human social networks


Meeting dates: March 6-8, 2014


Location: NIMBioS at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville



David B. McDonald, Zoology & Physiology, Univ. of Wyoming

Tanya Berger-Wolf, Computer Science, Univ. of Illinois

Jennifer Fewell, Center for Social Dynamics and Complexity, Arizona State Univ.

Amiyaal Ilany, NIMBioS

Bryan Shader, Mathematics, Univ. of Wyoming

Tina Wey , Biology, New Mexico State Univ.


Objectives: The structure and functioning of social networks is of rapidly growing interest in evolutionary biology. While modern network analysis offers many sophisticated techniques, most were developed for extremely large networks, not for the smaller networks most commonly found in non-human social systems. Furthermore, biological systems change through time, and many questions of fundamental importance involve network dynamics. Thus there is currently a need for modern network analysis techniques that are specific to these systems and issues. This workshop will explore problems and opportunities raised by small (tens to hundreds of individuals) social networks as they develop over time, with special focus on three issues: 1) how temporal dynamics affect network function and emergent properties, 2) the response of the network to perturbations such as births, deaths, immigration and emigration from the social group, 3) the tension between a focus on network structure (e.g., importance of roles and network centrality) and process (e.g., flow of information, disease transmission). The group will bring together empiricists interested in a diversity of animal social groups (ants, fish, birds, mammals) and quantitative scientists (network scientists, mathematicians, computer scientists, physicists) interested in the special problems posed by the dynamics of small social networks.


Application Deadline: December 2, 2013


Descriptive Flyer: http://nimbios.org/ifiles/WS_socialnet_flyer.pdf


To Apply: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1cKwcO4lu2vCnsUd2aV1mk_9JrDCICFvAcOS0eleoxFU/viewform

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