The Rules of Contagion

Why do some ideas take off – and others fail to spread? Why are some diseases predictable, and others swamped in uncertainty? And what about the outbreaks that never happen at all? We live in a world that’s more connected than ever before. But even as we see our lives being shaped by the spread of ideas, trends – and even diseases – we sometimes struggle to grasp how it actually works. Outbreaks seem to be driven by randomness and hidden laws, and in order to understand them, we need to start thinking like mathematicians. Here, epidemiologist Adam Kucharski reveals how new mathematical approaches are transforming what we know about contagion – from the revolutionary initiatives that helped tackle gun violence in Chicago to the truth behind the spread of fake news.

£16.99

SKU: 9781788160193 Category: Tags: ,

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An Observer Book of the YearA Times Science Book of the YearA New Statesman Book of the YearA Financial Times Science Book of the Year'It is hard to imagine a more timely book ... much of the modern world will make more sense having read it.' The TimesA deadly virus suddenly explodes into the population. A political movement gathers pace, and then quickly vanishes. An idea takes off like wildfire, changing our world forever. We live in a world that's more interconnected than ever before. Our lives are shaped by outbreaks - of disease, of misinformation, even of violence - that appear, spread and fade away with bewildering speed.To understand them, we need to learn the hidden laws that govern them. From 'superspreaders' who might spark a pandemic or bring down a financial system to the social dynamics that make loneliness catch on, The Rules of Contagion offers compelling insights into human behaviour and explains how we can get better at predicting what happens next.Along the way, Adam Kucharski explores how innovations spread through friendship networks, what links computer viruses with folk stories - and why the most useful predictions aren't necessarily the ones that come true.

Additional information

Weight 535 g
Dimensions 225 × 140 × 25 mm
Author

Kucharski, Adam

Publisher

Wellcome Collection

Imprint

Wellcome Collection

Cover

Hardback

Pages

341

Language

English

Edition

0

Dewey

302.015118 (edition:23)

Readership

College – higher education / Code: F

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