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Wolfram Summer SchoolFounded in 2003

17th Annual Wolfram Summer School, held at Bentley University June 23–July 12, 2019


Pablo Sanchez

Class of 2014


I'm currently finishing my master's degree in economics at FLACSO (Facultad Latinoamericana de Ciencias Sociales) of Ecuador. Before this, I earned a bachelor's degree in biology, and my thesis' main subject was the relation of vocal communication with different moments of reproductive behavior of the tropical eagle. During this research in the Ecuadorian tropical rainforest (Yasuni), I became interested in biodiversity and how it works, but didn't find a definitive answer from ecology's literature. Also as an active member of the Galapagos hawk projects and because of my many survey visits to the islands, I noticed the profound difference in species richness and how diversity allows efficiency in resource exploitation in low productivity habitats. This and a permanent interest in economics led me to seek a possible reason for the negative relation between species richness and economic development, especially in the tropics. Thus the need of knowledge of economy and the social sciences. Here, I found that economists rather avoid the subject of diversity, and that between ecology and economy there is a radical difference in the way of focusing in this matter, although this could be related to economic stability and resilience as theorized in ecology, as functional diversity.

Project: Importance of Diversity in an Economic System

Niche as a way of measuring diversity

I try to understand how diversity acts in the economic processes, taking hints from ecology with many examples of the tropics. Since functional diversity has been a matter of constant attention in ecology, it is rare that this has been poorly observed in the economy. So relations among agents and the substrate could in some way benefit production, as observed in ecology where the total biomass increases with diversity, and also provide a way to analyze stability and resilience. As a first step, simulations are a different way to approach these complex systems. I think NKS could lead to a better understanding of economic systems. Thus as a first step, the objective is to model economic niches in order to analyze them and propose a simulation of the effects of diversity in economics.

Favorite Outer Totalistic r=1, k=2 2D Cellular Automaton

Rule 175166