An Overview of the New Frontiers of Economic Complexity

  • Cristelli M
  • Tacchella A
  • Pietronero L
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The fundamental idea developed throughout this short overview on Economic Complexity is that a revolution of the revolution of Economics is needed to turn this field into a mature discipline. The first revolution of Economic Complexity (Bouchaud in Nature 455:1181, 2008) led to a conceptual paradigm shift and agent-based models have shown, from a qualitative point of view, the crucial role played by concepts like agent heterogeneity and herding behavior to understand the non-trivial features of financial time series. The second revolution must lead the paradigm shift from a conceptual and qualitative level to a quantitative and effective description of economic systems. This can be achieved through the introduction of new metrics and quantitative methods in Social Sciences (Economics, Finance, opinion dynamics, etc.). In fact, the concept of metrics is usually neglected by mainstream theories of Economy and Finance. Only in that way Economic Complexity can concretely affect the thinking of Economic mainstream and, in this sense, become a mature discipline. The large availability of datasets (the so-called Big Data Science) has recently revealed new promising path towards such perspectives and, as an example, we briefly discuss how archival data about export flows can be turned into a concrete tool to assess the competitiveness of countries and the complexity of products.




Cristelli, M., Tacchella, A., & Pietronero, L. (2014). An Overview of the New Frontiers of Economic Complexity (pp. 147–159).

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