Managing mutual information & transfer entropy in synthetic ecologies

Simon Reay Atkinson, Seyedamir Tavakoli Taba, Mike Harre, Terence Bossomaier, Liaquat Hossain

Research output: Book chapter/Published conference paperConference paperpeer-review


In this paper we consider transfer entropy and mutual information in terms of their application in the emerging highly interconnected and dynamic synthetic ecologies underpinned by the Cyber. We consider existing models relating to the management of learning and change within organizations and as they may relate to mutual information (MI) and transfer entropy (TE) within socio and info/techno settings, based upon a Mech-Organic perspective. A premise of this paper is that change is costly and that it needs to be seen through a social as well as an info/techno lens. We identify potential improvements to existing models and applications applied to the management of change by considering alternative models and how they may be applied collaboratively within a learning organization.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUK Academy for Information Systems Conference Proceedings 2014
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
PublisherUK Academy for Information Systems
Number of pages24
Publication statusPublished - 2014
EventUK Academy for Information Systems Conference 2014: UKAIS 2014 - University of Oxford, Oxford, United Kingdom
Duration: 07 Apr 201409 Apr 2014 (Archived page)


ConferenceUK Academy for Information Systems Conference 2014
Abbreviated titleUsing Information Systems to make the world a better place: from ideals to action
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
OtherThe exhortation to bend more of our scholarly effort to improving the lot of the less privileged and underserved is not new; the call has gone forth in recent years from distinguished IS scholars such as Walsham, Watson, DeSouza and Galliers, amongst others. But the translation of “lofty ideals” into “actionable proposals”, and most important of all action itself, is still more honoured in the breach than the observance. So much of our research and teaching continues to be geared to the interests of commercial enterprises, and the more global the better. This inevitably conflates development narrowly with economic and material development, rather than forms of freedom and emancipation envisaged by humanist thinkers, such as Amartya Sen. Shifting the moral agenda requires radical changes in the way we teach, how we carry out our research, how we engage with underserved communities, how we nurture the next generation of researchers, where we publish. Accomplishing profound reform to the over-arching institutional structures and incentive systems of the Academy, which ultimately shape the behaviour and practices of its denizens, is no easy task. But this is no reason for demurring; the time is ripe. The theme of this year’s conference is a natural continuance of that of 2013, “Social Information Systems” which called for a broadening of our research to embrace the social sphere: health, social care, public services and community development. With the growing imperative to demonstrate “research impact”, this broadening is vital, lest our work continues to benefit only those who need it least. All forms of research addressing the theme will be welcome: empirical projects (especially “action research”), innovative teaching developments, philosophical essays. As ever, papers addressing any aspect of our field are invited as well as those focused specifically on the Conference theme. Again, we are seeking to widen the community of engagement and would like to hear from social and information scientists, moral philosophers, social media researchers, systems thinkers, software engineers, as well as those already committed to the field of Information Systems.
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