Group Leader, Virtual Reality for Collective Behavior Group
Assistant Professor at the Department of Computer and Information Science and Centre for the Advanced Study of Collective Behaviour,
University of Konstanz.
Many social phenomena emerging in human (and non-human) collectives - from the interpersonal coordination of bodily movements and internal states (e.g. intentions, emotions, thoughts) to the evolution of social norms, culture or language, are not yet well understood and difficult to model. These social phenomena often emerge within a complex social context of a network of simultaneously interacting agents. In order to investigate how social phenomena emerge in collectives, we employ state of the art technologies, such as Virtual Reality (VR). VR allows us to manipulate how each agent perceives all other agents and to precisely measure the effect of this manipulation on collective behavioral patterns. This allows us to understand how individual agents operate in the context of other agents and how states in individual agents (e.g. decisions, emotions, stress) transmit to other agents in the collective.