Broadway scene

Report: The future of urban science: integrating the social and natural sciences

Jan. 13, 2020

In a new report submitted to the National Science Foundation, a large group of collaborators from many fields, led by Jose Lobo, spell out a vision for the future of urban science. From the preface: "Urban science seeks to understand the fundamental processes that drive, shape and sustain cities and...

Expanding Archaeology's Relevance

Oct. 25, 2019

Increasing numbers of archaeologists are arguing that archaeological evidence should be included in discussions of contemporary issues, but what would it take for archaeological evidence to play a larger role? In a recent paper , Social Reactors Project researcher Scott Ortman argues the main stumbling block is the intellectual history...

How the past was NOT different

Oct. 25, 2019

It is not difficult to come up with ways in which settlements of the past were different from contemporary cities. What is harder to do, but much more interesting, is identify ways in which they were the same. In a recent post on the Urban Studies Journal blog, Social Reactors...

Debating settlement scaling

June 13, 2019

Front: Celine Rozenblat, Vicky Chao, Michael Price, Luis Bettencourt; Back: Scott Ortman, Mike Smith, Debbie Strumsky, Elsa Arcaute, Devin White, Jose Lobo, Chris Kempes, Diego Rybski, Jeff West, Marcus Hamilton A recent meeting at the Santa Fe Institute brought together researchers with a variety of perspectives on urban and settlement...

Social Reactors Project Preprints now available

June 13, 2019

Preprints of publications in progress by Social Reactors Project collaborators are now available through the Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation's Publications page . The site contains links to preprints of studies of contemporary as well as ethnographic and archaeological data that are currently under review for publication, including studies of...

Street life: infrastructure in Roman cities

June 13, 2019

In the latest issue of the journal Antiquity , Social Reactors Project collaborators Jack Hanson, Scott Ortman, Luis Bettencourt and Liam Mazur present evidence that the street networks of Imperial Roman cities exhibit an even stronger economy of scale than is characteristic of contemporary urban street networks. The authors argue...

Anthro paper cover

Scaling up the Prehispanic Pueblo economy

April 23, 2019

In a recently-published edited volume, Social Reactors Project researchers Scott Ortman, Kaitlyn Davis, Jose Lobo and others argue that the economic history of the Rio Grande Pueblos of New Mexico provides a useful illustration of "Smithian Growth," a form of economic development first developed by Adam Smith in "The Wealth...

SRP collaborator moves to the University of Reading

Nov. 6, 2018

Social Reactors Project postdoc Jack Hanson recently received a fellowship from the British Academy to continue his studies of ancient Roman urbanism at the University of Reading in the United Kingdom. At Reading, he will collaborate with Michael Fulford, Annalisa Marzano and others to continue exploring applications of settlement scaling...

Participants in the working group meeting on low-density urbanism at SFI

Meeting on the Challenge of Low-Density Urbanism

Aug. 27, 2018

Recent research has identified a form of low-density urbanism, exemplified by settlement patterns in the Maya lowlands of Central America and the Angkor region of Cambodia, in which larger cities appear to be less dense overall than smaller ones. This distinctive type of settlement pattern provides an opportunity to deepen...

Video: Human Networks, Past and Present

April 9, 2018

Social Reactors Project researchers Scott Ortman and Mike Smith recently gave an update on the project at the Santa Fe Institute. You can read about the event and watch a video of the presentation here .