COMPUTATIONAL SOCIAL SCIENCE SEMINAR – Organizing Theories for Disaster Study in Computational Social Science – Burger
COMPUTATIONAL SOCIAL SCIENCE FRIDAY SEMINAR
Annetta Burger, PhD Candidate
Computational Social Science Program
Department of Computational and Data Sciences
George Mason University
Organizing Theories for Disaster Study in Computational Social Science
Friday, October 13, 3:00 p.m.
Center for Social Complexity Suite
3rd Floor, Research Hall
Based on evolving understandings of the complex, interconnected characteristics of disasters and social adaptations we propose to organize disaster theories in the interdisciplinary context of complex adaptive systems (CAS). Within this context disasters can be understood to consist of three sets of interacting systems, the socio-ecological system, the system of collective, social behavior, and the individual actor’s cognitive system. Ongoing dynamic forces within each set periodically build to disrupt events and cause failures in the overall system. In this talk, we will explore the dominant theory and frameworks in disaster studies from the perspective of these sets, demonstrate how they explain disasters, and discuss how Computational Social Science methodologies can support theory-building. By identifying evolving understandings and research questions co-located in disaster theory and CAS we find that the CAS features of heterogeneity, flows, interacting subsystems, emergence from self-organization and bottom-up processes, and adaptation and learning are integral to disaster studies.