**Ben Allen****
**

Boston University|
Department of Mathematics| New England Complex Systems Institute| PLEKTIX

I am a graduate student in mathematics at Boston University.
Before attending grad school, I taught math at public high schools in Chicago
and Boston though Teach for America. I hold a B.A. in mathematics from
Haverford College and a M.A in mathematics from Bryn Mawr College, both earned
in 2002. Though my master's thesis was in algebraic topology, I have since become
interested in evolutionary dynamics, diversity meausurement, information
theory, and complex systems.

**Evolutionary
dynamics** is the mathematical study of patterns that arise through
evolutionary processes. Evolving organisms,
behaviors, or ideas, can be modeled as agents who reproduce according to their
ability to compete with others. The
mathematical tools involved are game theory, dynamical systems, and stochastic
processes. I am specifically interested
in how cooperation can evolve through structured interactions between agents,
and in the evolution of mutation rates.

I am also interested in mathematical notions of **information **and **complexity.** These ideas are
very important for characterizing the behavior of complex systems in a
mathematically general way. I am
interested both in the abstract formality of these ideas and in their
application to specific system such as ecological communities, where ideas from
information theory can be used to quantify diversity.

Ben Allen, Mark Kon, Yaneer Bar-Yam. “A New Phylogenetic Diversity Measure Generlizing the Shannon Index
and Its Application to Phyllostomid Bats.” *American
Naturalist, *June 23, 2009. pdf

Benjamin Allen. "The Cateory-Theoretic
Arithmetic of Information." on the ArXiv.

I maintain PLEKTIX, an
expository blog on complex systems topics written for a general audience.

I taught a calculus course for social and life science majors at
Boston University, summer 2007. I have also taught both algebra and geometry at
the high school level, and assisted in calculus and applied math courses at
Boston University.

Boston University Department of Mathematics
and Statistics, 111 Cummington St, Boston, MA 02115.

Email: benallen (at) bu.edu