The evolution of complexity (1999)
Edited by Francis Heylighen, Johan Bollen & Alexander Riegler
Kluwer, Dordrecht
The Evolution of Complexity is addressed to a broad audience of academics and researchers from different disciplines, who are interested in the picture of our world emerging from the new sciences of complexity. This book reviews the new concepts proposed by the diverse theories of evolution, self-organisation, general systems, cybernetics, and the ‘complex adaptive systems’ approach pioneered by the Santa Fe institute. The thread which holds everything together is the growth of complexity during the history of the universe: from elementary particles, via atoms, molecules, living cells, multicellular organisms, plants, and animals to human beings, and societies. The different sections of the book discuss the foundations and philosophy of complexity evolution, its mathematical and computer models, its explanation of self-organising and living systems, the insights it provides into the origin of mind, language and culture, and its practical applications in areas such as management and system design.
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