9 posts · 6,071 views
About mathematical social science, the science of science, and anything else of interest to Samuel Arbesman.
Sexual selection, like many evolutionary concepts, was first anticipated by Charles Darwin and has since been elaborated in great detail. It is a powerful concept, explaining everything from the unwieldy nature of the peacock to the changing curves of Playboy centerfolds over the years. But this is all selection at the visual level. Just as [...]... Read more »
Apicella, C., Feinberg, D., & Marlowe, F. (2007) Voice pitch predicts reproductive success in male hunter-gatherers. Biology Letters, 3(6), 682-684. DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2007.0410
Apicella, C., & Feinberg, D. (2009) Voice pitch alters mate-choice-relevant perception in hunter–gatherers. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 276(1659), 1077-1082. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2008.1542
I recently published my first history article. Titled The Life-Spans of Empires, it’s published in the delightfully-named journal Historical Methods: A Journal of Quantitative and Interdisciplinary History. Using a fun dataset I unearthed from some articles in the Nineteen Seventies, I explore the lifespans of empires, and their similarities to other complex systems: The collapse [...]... Read more »
Samuel Arbesman. (2011) The Life-Spans of Empires. Historical Methods, 44(3), 127-129. info:/10.1080/01615440.2011.577733
I co-authored a perspective piece in the June issue of PLoS Computational Biology about a new subfield of scientometrics that Nicholas Christakis and I are calling eurekometrics: Until recently, the quantitative study of science has focused on studying patterns in publications, such as citation counts to discern impact, and in coauthorship networks to discern collaboration. [...]... Read more »
In evolutionary biology, there is a now-discredited idea that “ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny.” In other words, the development of an organism follows its evolutionary history. Human embryos look like they have gills because people evolved from fish, we have tails in utero because of the same origins, and so forth. In a recent paper in PLoS [...]... Read more »
Mesoudi A. (2011) Variable cultural acquisition costs constrain cumulative cultural evolution. PloS one, 6(3). PMID: 21479170
I co-authored a paper in PLoS ONE, published today, entitled Geographic Constraints on Social Network Groups. Essentially, we tried to understand the relationship between position in a social network and physical location by examining social networks at the level of the social group. Here’s a figure from the paper that shows the interplay between the [...]... Read more »
In a recent paper in Scientometrics, a group of scientists examined what the social properties are of the most highly cited scientists in the fields of environmental science and ecology. They asked highly cited scientists (determined using ISIHighlyCited.com) to complete an online survey, and collected a wide variety of information, from demographics to perspectives on [...]... Read more »
Parker, J., Lortie, C., & Allesina, S. (2010) Characterizing a scientific elite: the social characteristics of the most highly cited scientists in environmental science and ecology. Scientometrics, 85(1), 129-143. DOI: 10.1007/s11192-010-0234-4
A couple of years ago, two researchers at the Technion tested whether or not funnier scientific article titles yielded higher citations. Their article, Amusing titles in scientific journals and article citation, takes the titles of over 1000 articles and has them rated on two scales, pleasantness and how amusing they are. They then checked to [...]... Read more »
Sagi, I., & Yechiam, E. (2008) Amusing titles in scientific journals and article citation. Journal of Information Science, 34(5), 680-687. DOI: 10.1177/0165551507086261
With news of new extrasolar planets being released nearly weekly, there is a general feeling that we are in the midst of a singular moment in cosmic discovery. And the news a few weeks ago of a planet that is about the same size as Earth has provided the sense that the discovery of a [...]... Read more »
Samuel Arbesman, & Gregory Laughlin. (2010) A Scientometric Prediction of the Discovery of the First Potentially Habitable Planet with a Mass Similar to Earth. PLoS ONE (in press). arXiv: 1009.2212v1
Speaking of luck, we just released a paper onto SSRN about luck and skill entitled Differentiating Skill and Luck in Financial Markets with Streaks. This paper, which I worked on with Andrew Mauboussin (a brilliant high school student who worked in our lab this summer), examines the relationship between skill and luck using mutual fund [...]... Read more »
Andrew Mauboussin, & Samuel Arbesman. (2010) Differentiating Skill and Luck in Financial Markets with Streaks. SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract. info:/
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