In Ecology, systems where the interactions between two given actors amount to a benefit for both, are called mutualistic. This is the case of plant-pollinator, or plantseed-dispersers systems. They can be described in terms of a particular kind of complex network, called bipartite, which consists of two well defined kind of vertices (representing the animal and the plant species) such that the edges that stand for the interactions, only connect vertices of different kind. It has been found that networks describing real systems of this kind, are not random but display instead a high degree of internal organisation called “nestedness”.
Interestingly, this representation may also be useful to describe some economic systems, like import-export markets, product-country or buyers-sellers networks.
In this talk I will first introduce different parameters that are commonly used to measure the degree of order of a mutualist ecosystem, and I will show how this order is related to the robustness of the system.
Then I will discuss how these notions may be useful to understand and predict the behaviour of different economic systems, in particular, I will show how to apply them
to the study of the structural differences between auction and negotiated markets.


Laura Hernandez Associate Professor, Physics Department

Invited Talk e-session

Photos by : Ivan