Young Scientist Award 2007On behalf of the AKSOE, the
Young-Scientist Award for Socio- and Econophysics 2007
is awarded to
Dr. Katarzyna Sznajd-Weron (Wroclaw, Poland)
for her outstanding original contributions to a better understanding of open problems in socio-economic systems by means of physical methods.
Dr. Sznajd-Weron introduced a new model of social dynamics (known as the Sznajd-Weron model now) that explains characteristic properties of opinion formation in social groups. The model takes into account the fact that we are more easily changing our opinions when a new opinion is already represented by at least a pair of our friends or a larger group of people in our neigbourhood.
According to the Sznajd-Weron model, a collaborating pair of people can convince other group members to its opinion while a disagreement in such a pair will efficiently diminish its influence in the social group. On this basis, her model greatly advanced our understanding of collective opinion formation in social groups and society. Dr. Sznajd-Weron was able to adopt universal tools of statistical physics for analytical and numerical description of social systems and has shown how a new kinetic Ising model can be used for modeling opinion dynamics. Her model can be also applied to the analysis of price fluctuations at stock markets and provides a better understanding of correlations and large-scale fluctuations existing in these systems. Similar theoretical approaches allowed Dr. Sznajd-Weron to investigate the behaviour of consumers at duopoly-markets where two different firms compete with their products using appropriate advertising strategies.
Dr. Katarzyna Sznajd-Weron, through her original and unconventional concepts in statistical physics, fosters innovative bridges between physical methods and their application in social and economic studies.