RC51 is the research committee on sociocybernetics of the International Sociological Association.

We aim to promote the development of sociocybernetic theory and research within the social sciences. Sociocybernetics is broadly defined here as applications within the social sciences of first- and second-order cybernetics, general systems theory and the various combinations and variations of these that can be subsumed under the term “the emerging sciences of complexity”.

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13th Conference of Sociocybernetics | Deadline extended to 15th April

Dear members of RC51

We are on the road to our 13th Conference of Sociocybernetics. Due to some RC51 members request, the deadline has been extended to 15th April 2015.

All who submitted prior to March 15th will receive notification of acceptance as planned (30th of March).

New important dates

  • 15th April 2015 Deadline (extension) for submission of abstracts
  • 26th April 2015 Notification of acceptance, with possible request for revisions
  • 1st June 2015 Deadline for submission of full papers
  • 7th June 2015 Deadline for registration

An updated version of the CFP is now available.

Please, visit the Conference web page at http://eventos.unizar.es/go/sociocyber2015 for REGISTRATION and more information such as travel, accomodation and so on.

See you soon in Zaragoza!

Pedro J. Escriche
Head of the Local Organising Committee

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YOU STILL CAN SEND A SESSION PROPOSAL FOR THE 3rd ISA FORUM OF SOCIOLOGY (Deadline is 15 March, 2015 24:00 GMT)

The Third ISA Forum will be convened in Vienna, Austria, 10-14 July 2016 on the theme “The Futures We Want: Global Sociology and the Struggles for a Better World.” This theme encourages a forward-orientation in empirical, theoretical, and normative research to tackle the problems and opportunities that often cut across borders.

As RC51 we are preparing sessions to discuss Sociocybernetic issues in a range of sociological topics from the tiny worlds of micro situations to the broad macro dynamics.

Session proposals must be submitted in English, French or Spanish.

If you are interested in participate please register your session proposal: https://isaconf.confex.com/isaconf/forum2016/cfp.cgi

Call for Proposal for RC51 2015 Conference is out

We are pleased to announce that the call for proposal for the 13th conference of sociocybernetics is now out.

Sociocybernetics Facing Turbulent Times: Media, Politics and Societies” [CFP DOWNLOAD]
28th to 3rd July, University of Zaragoza, Spain.

Please submit your proposals before 15th March 2015.

Abstracts should be sent in English. Please submit a regular abstract of 200-300 word together with an extended abstract of 750-1000 words (including references) for review purposes. The former will be published in the RC51 Newsletter, included in the abstracts booklet made available to conference participants and published as part of the conference programme on the RC51 website. The regular abstract only should include information about the author(s): names, affiliations, email addresses and three keywords. Both abstracts should be sent to the Head of the Abstracts Committee José A. Amozurrutia (j.amoz@yahoo.com), with copy to the RC51 Secretary Patricia E. Almaguer Kalixto (endev.research@gmail.com).

Journal of Sociocybernetics Vol 12 (2014) is out

We are pleased to announce that the Vol. 12 (2014) of JOURNAL  OF SOCIOCYBERNETICS is out.

You can view it here: http://papiro.unizar.es/ojs/index.php/rc51-jos/index (please note the new sever-address)

The present issue of the JOURNAL OF SOCIOCYBERNETICS is the last edition under the  responsibility of Michael Paetau from the “Center for Sociocybernetics” Studies (http://www.socio- cybernetics.eu). In January 2015, the quite recently elected board of the ISA-Research Committee 51 will take up its work and Fabio Giglietto, Professor at the Department of Communication and Human Studies of the University of Urbino “Carlo Bo” (http://www.mendeley.com/profiles/fabio-giglietto/) and research fellow of the “Center for Sociocybernetics” Studies (http://www.socio- cybernetics.eu), will commence as the new journal editor. During the last four years Fabio Giglietto, already was a member of the editorial board of our Journal. We wish him and the new board continued success and all the best for the upcoming period.

The current edition includes articles applying several theoretical aspects of complexity analysis on different empirical cases. In their article “Reflections on the Complexity of Ancient Social Heterarchies: Toward New Models of Social Self-Organization in Pre-Hispanic Colombia” Nathalie Mezza-Garcia, Tom Froese and Nelson Fernández face the limitations which hierarchical and centrally controlled systems have in their information processes with respect to manage large-scale crisis and challenges. With reference to historical examples in pre-Hispanic Colombia, specifically the cultures of the Zenú, the Muiscas and the Tayronas, the authors propose that creating and analyzing computer models of their heterarchically and decentralized processes of management could provide a broader perspective on the possibilities of self-organized political systems.

In his article “The Paradox of Social Ties after the ICT Revolution: A Second-Order Observation” Saburo Akahori explores what kinds of distinctions are used when the change of social systems is observed. His analysis refers on the question of significance of social ties in Japan, which has repeatedly been emphasized in recent years. One example is the frequency of use of the Japanese word kizuna which means bond. It sounds odd be- cause conventionally kizuna indicates intimate, continuous relationships, not temporary relationships. Even though the word kizuna means strong ties, now it also implies weak ties. Here the author asks for the reason why the strange usage of the word kizuna has become acceptable.

Patricia E. Almaguer-Kalixto, José A. Amozurrutia, Chaime Marcuello Servós present in their paper “Policy Processes as Complex Systems: The case of Mesoamerican Sus- tainable Development Initiative” a research methodology for analyzing policy processes that are defined at the global level but implemented locally. The interrelations between these two levels pose great conceptual challenges in explaining the changes, transformations and continuations occurring in this complex process based on empirical information. Understanding the policy process as a complex system, the paper proposes analyzing macro, meso and micro levels as subsystems of the total process, identifying the interrelations between policy action, actors and discourses. The paper
takes the example of the Mesoamerican Sustainable Development Initiative (MSDI) of the Puebla Panama Plan (PPP), a regional integration plan for a new ‘Mesoamerica’ that originally included the seven Central American countries and the southern states of Mexico.

In her paper “Sustainable Technology Assessment and Sustainable Scenarios of Techno Social Phenomena” Michiko Amemiya-Ramírez desribes sustainable technology as a technological subsystem with marginal or no negative impacts on other technological systems, as well as the environment, the society and the economy. To identify such technologies it is necessary to describe their behavior and their present and future interactions with those systems. Due to social dynamics, a complete assessment to identify sustainable technologies requires a hard systems analysis and a soft system analysis. A hard system analysis is useful to assess the interactions, behavior and characteristics of the technology quantitatively. A soft system analysis is convenient to describe other characteristics and interactions through qualitative and non measurable characteristics.

For further issues of the JOURNAL OF SOCIOCYBERNETICS (the peer-reviewed open access journal of RC51 on Sociocybernetics), we invite scholars who have their background in the field of systems theory, sociocybernetics, information & communication science and who apply this for studying various social phenomena regarding their complexity and dynamics, to submit articles for publication in the JOURNAL OF SOCIOCYBERNETICS. For submitting articles authors need to register with the journal prior to submitting. People who want to register have the option to register as a reader or as an author. Every reader or author can register by themselves using the journal’s web- site. After clicking the register item they will be guided through the registration process. After registration they will be able to login by username and password and then authors may submit their papers. The system will immediately confirm the submission and will automatically trigger the review process. Authors will get an email with a URL that will enable them to track its progress through the editorial process once they are logged in. We recommend to review the “About the Journal” page for the journal’s policies, as well as the “Author Guidelines“.

New Board 2014-2018

Following the call for candidates and afterwards the mail-ballot among our members, there it is the RC51 Board 2014-2018:

  • President: Chaime Marcuello‐Servós, Universidad de Zaragoza (Spain)
  • Vice‐President: José A. Amozurrutia, National University Autonomous of México (México)
  • Secretary: Patricia E. Almaguer Kalixto, Centro de Estudios y Agricultura Internacional (CERAI) / Universidad de Zaragoza (Spain)
  • Treasurer: Saburo Akahori, Tokyo Woman’s Christian University (Japan)
  • Newsletter Editor: Juan Carlos Barrón Pastor, Center for Research on North America (CISAN) / National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM)
  • Journal Editor: Fabio Giglietto, University of Urbino “Carlo Bo”, Italy

We had 27 votes out of which 23 are valid ‐ members in good standing (i.e. being a registered member and having paid fees – so for those who forgot, please do renew your membership :-D). All candidates have received the same number of votes.

We also take the chance to thanks all the members of the previous board with special thank you to our past president Eva Buchinger.