Empirical Dynamic Modeling

“It is not the world that is mysterious,” Sugihara said. “Rather it is the way we view it that makes it mysterious.” from Quanta Magazine


Extract from: “A Twisted Path to Equation-Free Prediction

“Ecological modeling began almost 100 years ago, and from the start it was influenced heavily by physics and engineering, which had used differential equations to describe dynamic systems for the previous 200 years. The most commonly used fishery model, for example, is the Ricker model, developed by the Canadian biologist William Ricker in the 1950s to predict the number of new adults that an existing generation of fish is likely to produce the following year.

Sugihara’s team has developed an approach based on chaos theory that they call “empirical dynamic modeling,” which makes no assumptions about salmon biology and uses only raw data as input. In designing it, the scientists found that sea surface temperature can in fact help predict population fluctuations, even though the two are not correlated in a simple way. Empirical dynamic modeling, Sugihara said, can reveal hidden causal relationships that lurk in the complex systems that abound in nature.”

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