I am excited to say that a new paper that I have been involved in came out today in Frontiers in Physics about the role of speed variability in collective animal behaviour.
A number of agent-based models have been developed to help understand how coordinated collective behaviour can emerge from simple interaction rules. Thereby, a common, simplifying assumption is that individual agents move with a constant speed. In this paper together with the team of Pawel Romenczuk and colleagues in Berlin, we critically re-asses this assumption and provide new theoretical evidence that shows variability in the speed of individuals can have profound effects on the emergent collective patterns.
I have long been working on the role of individual heterogeneity in collective behaviour and was therefore excited to collaborate with Pawel and his team to run in-depth computer simulations to start better consider behavioural variability as a source of heterogeneity in animal groups. You can find the paper (open access) here.
Klamser, P. P., Gómez-Nava, L., Landgraf, T., Jolles, J. W., Bierbach, D., and Romanczuk, P. (2021). Impact of Variable Speed on Collective Movement of Animal Groups. Front. Phys. 9, 1–11. doi:10.3389/fphy.2021.715996.