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Bridging the gap:

from Individual Behavior to the Socio-tEchnical MaN


H2020 FET Open RIA 662725

Prof. Angel Snchez


IBSEN Project Coordinator
Grupo Interdisciplinar de Sistemas Complejos
Departamento de Matemticas
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid
http://www.anxosanchez.eu

Legans, Madrid, Spain, 22 March 2016

Re: Letter of support for FLAG-ERA Joint Transnational Call 2016


Proposal by Profs. Helbing and Conte
To whom it may concern:

IBSEN (http://www.ibsen-h2020.eu) is a FET Open project that started on 1 September


2015, and the first such project working on research at the intersection of complexity,
behavioral and computational social sciences. Our consortium consists of teams from the
universities Carlos III de Madrid (Spain), Zaragoza (Spain), Cambridge (UK), Oxford (UK),
Amsterdam (The Netherlands), Aalto (Finland) and Valncia (Spain), and involves physicists,
mathematicians, economists, anthropologists and computer scientists around the common
goal of unveiling human behavioral patterns in large, possibly ICT mediated, complex sociotechnological systems.
In this respect, we have just learned from distinguished researchers in the field of
computational social science such as Prof. Dirk Helbing and Prof. Rosaria Conte that they are
working on a proposal for the FLAG-ERA Joint Transnational Call 2016. The objective of the
proposal is to investigate and develop complex globally interactive data systems, with a focus
on smart societies and communities. The IBSEN team is very excited about this project, as it
nicely aligns with the project's long term vision, namely that, following IBSEN footprints,
researchers will build a human behavior simulator, i.e., a system of artificial human beings
capable of reacting and behaving as actual people, with variability related to cultural
specifities and other requirements. Such a technology would serve as a basis for economic
and socio-technogical simulations that would radically change many fields, from robotics to
economics, with major impacts, both technological and societal.
To make this vision come true, IBSEN intends to design a reliable experimental procedure,
suitable management and analysis tools and a first collection of behavioral rules focused on
cooperation, opinion diffusion, group and identity formation, and expectation-driven
phenomena in large, complex socio-technological systems. For the last few weeks, we have

Support for Flag-ERA proposal

Bridging the gap:


from Individual Behavior to the Socio-tEchnical MaN
H2020 FET Open RIA 662725

been in contact with Prof. Conte's group in order to explore the possibility that they can use
our platform to carry out experiments probing into different questions related to their FLAGERA proposal. We believe that this is indeed an excellent possibility to carry out world-class
research. One of the goals of IBSEN is to improve and enhance our experimental and
analytical platform through continued interaction with the best groups of researchers outside
our own team, and it is clear that for us it would be a great opportunity to have the input of
these highly qualified researchers. On the other hand, for the FLAG-ERA proposal itself,
having access to the IBSEN platform, with a volunteer database in excess of 10 000 subjects in
five European countries (at the time of writing) and able to carry out a wide variety
experiments involving 1 000+ subjects simultaneously means the possibility of putting their
ideas to test with large groups of people. The combination of the strengths of the two groups
can be very benefitial towards dramatically increasing the impact of IBSEN's research and the
transfer of the knowledge generated during the project to the society at large.
For the above reasons, I am happy to write this support letter for the FLAG-ERA proposal led
by Profs. Helbing and Conte in my capacity of Coordinator of the IBSEN project. Our team is
very enthusiastic by the above Proposal and looks forward to discussing possible opportunities
joint research with the FLAG-ERA team, as proposed activities are more fully developed. In
particular, we would be happy to work together with them in the design and analysis of
experiments intended to inform their research on complex global systems. We fully endorse
their proposal and hope it can be chosen for funding as it constitutes a great research
opportunity with potentially important societal consequences.

Best regards,

Prof. Angel Snchez


IBSEN Project Coordinator

Support for Flag-ERA proposal