IRMACS Day: Mathematical models: Uses, abuses, and non-uses

April 12, 2013

Dr. Andrew Odlyzko,
School of Mathematics, University of Minnesota

Abstract: Models are indispensable, but have to be used with caution. Some early quantitative models, drawn from the early history of British railways and related to the ubiquitous gravity models of transportation, urban planning, spacial economics, and related areas, will be presented. They demonstrate how even clearly false models can be useful, and how sometimes they are misused or tragically not used.

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