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Systems 2017, 5(2), 30; doi:10.3390/systems5020030

Reaction Networks as a Language for Systemic Modeling: On the Study of Structural Changes

Center Leo Apostel, Brussels Free University, 1050 Brussels, Belgium;
Insituto de Filosofía y Ciencias de la Complejidad, Los Alerces 3024, Ñuñoa, Chile;
Vicerrectoría Acadm´ ica, Universidad Diego Portales, Manuel Rodrg´uez Sur 415, Santiago, Chile
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 November 2016 / Revised: 22 March 2017 / Accepted: 23 March 2017 / Published: 31 March 2017
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Reaction Networks have been recently proposed as a framework for systems modeling due to its capability to describe many entities interacting in contextual ways and leading to the emergence of meta-structures. Since systems can be subjected to structural changes that not only alter their inner functioning, but also their underlying ontological features, a crucial issue is how to address these structural changes within a formal representational framework. When modeling systems using reaction networks, we find that three fundamentally different types of structural change are possible. The first corresponds to the usual notion of perturbation in dynamical systems, i.e., change in system’s state. The second corresponds to behavioral changes, i.e., changes not in the state of the system but on the properties of its behavioral rules. The third corresponds to radical structural changes, i.e., changes in the state-set structure and/or in reaction-set structure. In this article, we describe in detail the three types of structural changes that can occur in a reaction network, and how these changes relate to changes in the systems observable within this reaction network. In particular, we develop a decomposition theorem to partition a reaction network as a collection of dynamically independent modules, and show how such decomposition allows for precisely identifying the parts of the reaction network that are affected by a structural change. View Full-Text
Keywords: reaction networks; chemical organization theory; system theory; emergence; structural change reaction networks; chemical organization theory; system theory; emergence; structural change

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Veloz, T.; Razeto-Barry, P. Reaction Networks as a Language for Systemic Modeling: On the Study of Structural Changes. Systems 2017, 5, 30.

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