Information passing and collective animal behavior

Tuesday, October 11, 2011 - 3:30pm - 4:30pm
Lind 305
Naomi Leonard (Princeton University)
Information passing through social interactions in moving animal groups, such as bird flocks and fish schools, is credited both with improving group responsiveness to external environmental stimuli and with maintaining group cohesiveness in the presence of uncertainty. Agent-based dynamical models with interaction terms that enable information diffusion have been used successfully to reproduce a range of observed collective motions. I will discuss analytic approaches for examining group decision making and exploring group robustness to uncertainty. Of particular interest is the role of the topology of the interconnections among individuals on the emergent outcomes and performance at the level of the group.