AAAI Fall Symposium; Arlington, VA; November 4 - 6, 2011

Complex Adaptive Systems:
    Energy, Information, and Intelligence 

This symposium’s theme addresses fundamental issues for understanding complex phenomena: Energy, Information, and Intelligence.  This theme builds upon the previous years’ focus of Threshold Effects and Resilience, Robustness, and Evolvability. 

As in previous years, we will have invited talks from leaders in the field, as well as paper presentations on both completed and speculative work.  Additionally, we will hold panel discussions and smaller break-out groups to allow for a spirited interaction among participants. 

Energy: All complex systems require energy to develop and persist, but energy as a concept in CAS is often more than merely physical energy; it is anything that drives and constrains the system.  Agents must cooperate and/or compete for limited resources, whether these resources are “energy,” “power,” “food,” or “money.”  The success or failure of various agent strategies depends on how effective the agents are in acquiring and utilizing these resources.

Information: In the quest for resources, the implementation of various agent strategies is enabled by the collection of local information by these agents.  But information, too, encompasses more than just words, ideas, or memes; it also includes many forms of non-verbal or non-human communication systems.  We broadly define communication to be any information passing to an agent, from other agents or from its environment.  Such flows of information may, in their own right, be the focus of CAS modeling, such as in models of political dissent, social contagion, or the dynamical flows across networks.

Intelligence: Agents in a CAS acquire information from a limited communication radius, interpret what they see, hear, feel, or otherwise sense, and then act based on this knowledge.  These actions and reactions spread through a CAS in patterns of correlated feedback.  This process leads to the emergence of system level properties, including global patterns of intelligence that no individual agent within that system possesses.  Such system-level intelligence can arise even from simple agents, or agents with only limited knowledge or abilities.  Therefore, these agents cannot be studied in isolation; understanding these complex systems requires an understanding of the agents in conjunction with their interactions.

This symposium will bring together researchers from diverse fields who study complex systems using the tools and techniques of CAS.  We will explore phenomena related to Energy, Information, and Intelligence across various disciplines as one avenue towards exposing common dynamics that are found in these disparate domains.  By bringing together scholars who study these phenomena, we can leverage a deep knowledge of one domain to gain insight into others.

For examples of how our theme may apply to your work, please see the CFP page.

Registration, hotel, and other travel information can be found here on the AAAI website.  Registration is now open for all attendees, including invited participants.  Please note the following deadlines:
  • October 10th: Hotel reservation deadline (at the AAAI special rate).
  • October 14th: General registration deadline.
  • October 21st: Registration refund request deadline.
If you would like to be added to our interest list, please click here.


Complex Adaptive Systems: Energy, Information, and Intelligence is being hosted and sponsored by the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) as part of the 2011 Fall Symposia Series. Funding in support of this symposium has been provided by the National Science Foundation, award ID #0948424 and #1952901.  Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.