Magda Osman, Queen Mary University of London


Magda Osman, Queen Mary University of London

SAGE 5101 - New Location

November 22, 2010 12:00 PM - 1:30 PM


Complex systems are commonly referred to as a network of multiple interconnected parts that are self regulatory and self organizing, and have the capacity to change over time. The scientific interest in complex systems is that they present a challenge because understanding the workings of the components of the system does not always ensure understanding the system as a whole; this is taken to refer to as the system possessing emergent properties. What makes complex systems important in general is that they are an integral part of our everyday lives and our encounters with them require us to manage and control them. Take for example driving a car. The complex system is the car itself, which has multiple components, which can operate autonomously (e.g., cruise control), but also requires our attention and control (e.g., steering in poor weather conditions). We might ask ourselves, what are the critical underlying mechanisms that enable us to exert control over complex systems? I will present a series of studies that provide insights into the fundamental psychological processes necessary for goal directed dynamic decision making in complex domains.

Controlling Uncertainty:  A Review of Human Behavior in Complex Dynamic Environments

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