New book: Calling Bullshit

In their book, Calling Bullshit: The Art of Skepticism in a Data-Driven World, former SFI External Professor Carl T. Bergstrom and Jevin D. West unpack the ease with which misinformation has leached into every corner of society and call for a healthy dose of skepticism in science, media, and everyday life.

Read More

'Pandemic Pod' recreates SFI experience

This year, the annual postdocs’ gathering is a retreat not from SFI’s day-to-day calm, but to a recreation of it. Sheltered by strict safety protocols, the 'Pandemic Pod' is taking place in person.

Read More

Tiny worlds reveal fundamental drivers of abundance, diversity

Ecology is traditionally a data-poor discipline, but tiny microbial worlds offer the quantity of data needed to solve universal questions about abundance and diversity. New research by Jacopo Grilli reveals the fundamental relationship between the environment and the species present in a microbial community and can be used as a starting point for investigating bigger systems.

Read More

Size and sleep: New research reveals why little things sleep longer

Using data from humans and other mammals, a team of scientists including researchers from the Santa Fe Institute has developed one of the first quantitative models that explains why sleep times across species and during development decrease as brains get bigger. Crucially, the model identifies a sharp transition at around 2.4 years of age, where sleep patterns change in humans as the primary purpose of sleep shifts from reorganization to repair.

Read More

Aeon: Origin story

Recently, a number of SFI scientists have brought new research frames to bear on the origin of life puzzle. Their work, and that of other leading researchers in the field, is highlighted in a recent Aeon essay.

Read More

Aeon: Uncertain times

In an essay for Aeon magazine, SFI Professor Jessica Flack and SFI Davis Professor Melanie Mitchell describe how the COVID-19 pandemic prompts us to revisit the ways that complex systems retain stability in the biological world. By learning from biological systems, we can begin to shore up the vulnerability inherent in the complex systems that undergird human life.

Read More

New model shows how voting behavior can drive political parties apart

If voters gravitate toward the center of the political spectrum, why are the parties drifting farther apart? A new model by SFI's Vicky Chuqiao Yang and her collaborators reveals a mechanism for increased polarization in U.S. politics, guided by the idea of "satisficing"-- that people will settle for a candidate who is "good enough."

Read More

New book: Unsolved Problems in Ecology

A new collection of essays, co-curated by SFI External Professor Andy Dobson, consider unanswered questions about scaling, population biology, ecosystems and communities, collective behavior, and conservation, among other themes.

Read More

Research News Briefs, Summer 2020

Research News Briefs highlight new studies from the SFI community published in the last quarter. The following briefs appeared in SFI's Summer 2020 Parallax newsletter. 

Read More