Filed under book | Tags: · biosphere, cold war, computing, cybernetics, environment, governmentality, history of science, networks, politics, secrecy, soviet union, systems science, systems theory
“In The Power of Systems, Eglė Rindzevičiūtė introduces readers to one of the best-kept secrets of the Cold War: the International Institute of Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA), an international think tank established by the U.S. and Soviet governments to advance scientific collaboration. From 1972 until the late 1980s IIASA in Austria was one of the very few permanent platforms where policy scientists from both sides of the Cold War divide could work together to articulate and solve world problems. This think tank was a rare zone of freedom, communication, and negotiation, where leading Soviet scientists could try out their innovative ideas, benefit from access to Western literature, and develop social networks, thus paving the way for some of the key science and policy breakthroughs of the twentieth century.
Ambitious diplomatic, scientific, and organizational strategies were employed to make this arena for cooperation work for global change. Under the umbrella of the systems approach, East-West scientists co-produced computer simulations of the long-term world future and the anthropogenic impact on the environment, using global modeling to explore the possible effects of climate change and nuclear winter. Their concern with global issues also became a vehicle for transformation inside the Soviet Union. The book shows how computer modeling, cybernetics, and the systems approach challenged Soviet governance by undermining the linear notions of control on which Soviet governance was based and creating new objects and techniques of government.”
Publisher Cornell University Press, Ithaca, NY, 2016
Creative Commons BY-NC-ND 4.0 International License
ISBN 9781501703188, 1501703188
Reviews: Roundtable: Barbara Czarniawska, Jenny Andersson, Claudia Aradau, Paul Rubinson, author’s response (H-Diplo, 2019), Kristine C. Harper (Isis, 2018), Benjamin Peters (Slavic Review, 2019), Gerald Easter (American Historical Review, 2018), Jeanne Morefield (J History of Ideas, 2020), Laurent Coumel (Cahiers du monde russe, 2018, FR), Una Bergmane (Lithuanian Historical Studies, 2018), Christian Dayé (Serendipities, 2018).
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Filed under book | Tags: · biology, cellular automata, computation, mathematics, philosophy of science, physics, science, systems science
This long-awaited work from one of the world’s most respected scientists presents a series of dramatic discoveries never before made public. Starting from a collection of simple computer experiments–illustrated in the book by striking computer graphics–Stephen Wolfram shows how their unexpected results force a whole new way of looking at the operation of our universe.
Wolfram uses his approach to tackle a remarkable array of fundamental problems in science, from the origins of apparent randomness in physical systems, to the development of complexity in biology, the ultimate scope and limitations of mathematics, the possibility of a truly fundamental theory of physics, the interplay between free will and determinism, and the character of intelligence in the universe.
Written with exceptional clarity, and illustrated by nearly a thousand original pictures, this seminal book allows scientists and nonscientists alike to participate in what promises to be a major intellectual revolution.
Publisher Wolfram Media Inc, 2002
ISBN 1579550193, 9781579550196