The Dynamical System Team Launches Attractor Software Website - Check it out!
By Juliette de WolfeOur main goal in developing the attractor software was to help conflict stakeholders, negotiators, and third parties understand and systematically map the complexity of various factors influencing a given conflict system, in order to better visualize possible intervention strategies and consider the multiple consequences and potential impact of their actions. (An overview and tutorial on the Attractor Software platform is available at: http://www.iccc.edu.pl/as/).
The Attractor Software is essentially a visualization tool. It prompts the user to specify the key factors influencing the conflict, the actions that can be undertaken, and to estimate the consequences of these actions with respect to three types of outcomes:
1. their influence on the current state of the conflict,
2. their influence on the potential for future conflict or negative interactions, and
3. their influence on the potential for positive social interactions and, ultimately, sustainable peace.
The user, by evaluating each factor, estimates the strength and the direction of the influence of each factor on the whole system. The software merely visualizes the understanding of the user, as a tool for encompassing and systematically describing what parties and interveners have identified, based on their own expertise and experience with a case. The software does not estimate the importance of each factor by itself, nor its influences. It is up to the user to
1. specify the case and the social relations to be analyzed (e.g., a marriage, an ethnic conflict),
2. generate the list of factors that are likely to influence the nature of the current and future relationship, and